SAN VITALE (ST. VITALIS)

04 NovemberFaçade Spire-G18
Symbol: Palm

San Vitale is closely associated with Sant’Agricola. Both saints and martyrs lived in Bologna in the 3rd century AD. Vitale was Agricola’s servant, and despite the difference in social status, the two men were united by the same faith, the Christian one, a calling that led them to a common tragic fate. Having professed his faith, Vitale was taken prisoner and then thrown into the arena, where he suffered indescribable torture after refusing to abjure the Christian faith. Agricola, who powerlessly witnessed the scene, was deeply impressed by his servant’s courage, and he too chose to face the same tragic fate: he is a martyr who died by crucifixion. San Vitale’s original statue was sculpted in 1809 by artist Donato Carabelli. It was destroyed during the bombing of Milan in 1943, and was later replaced by a copy. The latter, made by Mario Bassetti in the mid-1900s, can be discerned crowning a spire of the façade, near the statue of Sant’Agricola, as evidence of the special perpetual bond between the two saints.

This spire was adopted by: