Piazza del Gesù Nuovo

sights / Squares & plazas

Piazza del Gesù Nuovo information

Naples , Italy
Getting there
Metro: Dante
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Flanked by the spiky Chiesa del Gesù Nuovo and the Basilica di Santa Chiara, this lively square is one of Naples' most beautiful. For hundreds of years it was the principal western entrance to the city. But it wasn't until two major modifications in the 16th century that the piazza took on its current proportions.

Firstly, Ferrante Sanseverino knocked down the houses that were blocking his beautiful 15th-century palazzo (later to become the Chiesa del Gesù Nuovo) and in one fell swoop cleared the square's northern flank. Some years later, Spanish viceroy Don Pedro de Toledo demolished the Angevin city gate and once again moved the city walls westwards.

At its centre soars Giuseppe Genuino's ornate Guglia dell'Immacolata, built between 1747 and 1750. On 8 December, the feast of the Immacolata , firemen scramble up to the top to place a wreath of flowers at the Virgin Mary's feet.