The church of St Clare and
the Chapel of the Cross

THE CHURCH OF ST CLARE, from chapel of the Norman castle, under the title of Saints Peter and Paul (12th century), became the church of the monastery of the Poor Clares, founded in 1333 by Sveva de Bethsan, countess of Tricarico and wife to Tommaso Sanseverino, earl of Marsico and by King Roberto d'Angiò. It was one of the first foundations of the Second Franciscan Order in Basilicata. In 1931, it became the church of the monastery of the "Disciples of Eucharistic Jesus" nuns, who succeeded the Poor Clares and held it until 2009. With its single nave, in the Gothic manner, it underwent modifications to adapt it to the needs of the enclosure. The annexed chapel of the Crucifix, so named after the precious Crucifix wanted in 1696 by abbess Cecilia Gaeta, presents a splendid cycle of frescos by Pietro Antonio Ferro, completed in 1611 under the abbatial tenure of Eleonora Damiano and the episcopacy of Settimio De Robertis. The single panels of the paintings bear the names of about 27 Poor Clares, coming from the local nobility who commissioned them and testify to the "religious culture" and the spirituality of the Franciscan monastery. The present aspect of the church, decorated with stuccos with pure gold and with canvases from the 16th and 17th centuries, is the result of the restorations in 1852 wished for by abbess Luisa Ippolito. Closed as a result of the damage caused by the earthquake of 1980, it was reopened for worship by the Bishop of Tricarico, Monsignor Vincenzo Carmine Orofino, on 22nd April 2012.


  1. Entrance
  2. Commemorative plaque of the restoration of 1852
  3. Coat of arms of the Franciscan Order
  4. Upper floor, Choir of the Poor Clares: large iron grate (1849), wooden stalls (1849), wall painting representing "St Anthony" attributed to A. Stabile (1551)
  5. Remains of frescos (before 17th century) discovered during the restoration of 2012
  6. "The Immaculate", canvas by F. Jacob (fra' Giacomo from San Vito) 17th century
  7. "Portiuncula", canvas by F. Jacob (fra' Giacomo from San Vito) 17th century
  8. Statue of St Clare
  9. Statue of St Francis
  10. "Our Lady of the Assumption between Saints Peter and Paul", artist of the Venetian school - 16th century (wooden coffered ceiling)
  11. Wooden pulpit 18th century with painting of St Thomas Aquinas
  12. Pipe organ in painted wood, 18th century
  13. Commemorative plaque of the restoration of 2012
  14. Tomb of the priest Francesco Grassi
  15. "Adoration of the Magi" 19th century
  16. Entrance to the sacristy for the cloistered nuns
  17. Entrance to the sacristy for the believers
  18. Gratings for the cloistered nuns


  1. Frescos by Pietro Antonio Ferro, 1611 (walls and vault)
  2. Crypt for the burial of the Poor Clares (1733)
  3. Wooden Crucifix (1696) surrounded by wooden panels representing the Sorrowful Glorious and Joyful Mysteries below, the martyrdom of St Erasmus
  4. Grating with hatch for the communion
  5. Space for the "wheel"
  6. Entrance to the convent
Plan of the church of St Clare
Project implemented by:

Arch. Sabrina Lauria Membro Commissione per i Beni Culturali e l'Arte sacra della Diocesi di Tricarico (Coordinamento del progetto ed elaborati grafici), Prof.ssa Carmela Biscaglia Rerefente scientifico Beni storici, archivistici e librari della Diocesi di Tricarico (testi e consulenza storica), Don Nicola Soldo Direttore Ufficio per l'Arte Sacra e i Beni Culturali della Diocesi di Tricarico (consulenza teologica), Carla Coppa Dott.ssa in Storia dell'Arte (supervisore alle riprese e audio), MELDESIGNER.IT di Domenico Di Nobile (Curatore e realizzazione grafica), NAMIAS di Paolo Fedele (Autori scatti fotografici), Prof. Vito Sacco (Traduzioni e audio), FOTO LUX di Franco Ficazzola (Gestione amministrativa e attrezzatura fotografica)

Logo Comune di Tricarico Logo Diocesi di Tricarico
Loghi Finanziatori del Progetto