Restoration is underway of the altar of the Assumption

Works of the restoration of the stone apparatus of the main altar of the Basilica dei Frari has begun.

The complete installation of the scaffolding will not allow to see neither the altar nor the altarpiece until the end of the restoration works, scheduled for the beginning of summer 2021.
A photographic copy of the same size of the Titian’s Assumption was prepared and we hope will make up for, at least in part, the lack to see the original.

We are sorry for the inconvenience that this will bring, in particular, to visitors from all over the world, but we have to be satisfied to finally proceed with the beginning of the work, which will be financed by Save Venice Inc.

Fortunately, many other masterpieces of art in the Basilica dei Frari are awaiting you to be admired in all their beauty!

Frari: Minor Basilica

Today the Franciscan and parish community is reminiscent of a happy event: on February 1, 1926, the Basilica S.Maria Gloriosa dei Frari was given the title of Minor Basilica by Pius XI. In that year the Franciscan Friars remebered the 7th centenary of the death of St. Francis of Assisi (1182-1226) and the Friars Minor Conventual had recently returned (in 1922) to officiate in the Church they had founded (1230 1st construction, 1250 2nd construction, 1330 3rd construction) and from where they had been hunted by the Napoleonic suppressions in 1810.

Below you can find the extract of the text from the Acta Apostolicae Sedis of 1926 which elevates the Franciscan Church with the title of Minor Basilica.

Haec animo repetentes, cum dilectus filius Minister provincialis hodiernus Regularis Provinciae Patavinae S. Antonii, Ordinis Fratrum Minorum Conventualium, qui in ipsa aede divino cultui inserviunt et digne ac devote ibi sacra implent officia, Nos supplicibus votis deprecatus sit, ut dictum templum S. Mariae Gloriosae ad titulum atque honorem Basilicae minoris evehere dignaremur, hasque preces cumulent atque ornent gravissima commendationis officia tam Procuratoris generalis Ordinis Minorum Conventualium, quam dilecti filii Nostri Petri S. R. E. Cardinalis La Fontaine, ex dispensatione Apostolica Patriarchae Venetiarum, Nos optatis his annuendum ultro libenterque existimavimus.


On the occasion of the 500th anniversary of the Assunta altarpiece – painted by Titian in just 2 years and placed in the presbytery of the Baslica dei Frari on 19 May 1518 – the community of Franciscan friars and the parish community want to celebrate this event with cultural, musical and spiritual initiatives . Here are the most significant events in the program:

04.05 Opening concert
9.00 pm Choir Cantori Veneziani
“Visioni Sonore”
Director: Diana D’Alessio

16.05 Opening event
8:30 pm Paola Marini, director of the Gallerie dell’Accademia, tells the story of the Assumption of Titian

19.05 Birthday of the Assumption by Titian
All day: open day with free guided tours
– Poste Italiane philatelic service with special cancellation
6.30 pm Solemn Eucharistic Mass presided over by Mons. Francesco Moraglia, Patriarch of Venice

04.07 Choral concert
9.00 pm Choir of the Teatro La Fenice in Venice
Director: Claudio Marino Moretti

15.08 Concert on the Feast of the Assumption
4.00 pm Soloists of the Cappella Marciana
Vespers of the Assumption by Claudio Monteverdi
Director: Marco Gemmani

Gold Medal for Civil Valour to fr. Placido Cortese

It is with joy and gratitude that we, Franciscans Friars of the Frari, want to share the important award of the Italian Republic, the Gold Medal for Civil Valour, conferred by President Sergio Mattarella to our Father Placido Cortese (1907-1944), FranciscanConventual, who during the Second World War helped prisoners interned in concentration camps and succeeded in making many Jews escape. Then he was barbarously killed in Trieste in 1944 and now the process of canonization is under way.

We remember him here because Father Placido Cortese is also linked to our Basilica dei Frari: he stayed in Venice from September to October 1927 after leaving Cres, his native land. In few words he described the Basiica dei Frari in a letter addressed to his sister (who lived in Cres): “Our Church (dei Frari) is magnificent. A purity of lines that surprises, a divine apse where the Assumption of Titian stands out, the whole Basilica is a jewel of art and beauty “. In other letters written in this short period in Venice, he recalls the solemn liturgical celebrations where he participated.