Treasures of the Convent of St Dominic Major in Naples

Documents from the XIII to XVI centuries.
Convent of St Dominic Major in Naples

From 1 April to 30 June 2017, an exhibition titled, “Treasures of documents of St Dominic Major” will hold at the Convent of St Dominic Major in Naples. The exhibition, which is a strong desire of the Dominican friars, is organized by fr Gerardo Imbriani, OP who is in-charge of the Dominican library in collaboration with the following organizations: l’Opera San Domenico Maggiore Onlus and l’Associazione culturale San Bonaventura.

The exhibition aims to bring to the attention of scholars and the general public an interesting collection of very important paper documents produced in Naples by the Dominican brothers between the 13th and the 15th centuries, of about 800 years of their existence in the city (1231).

From the early years, the existence of these documents have played a decisive role in the evolution of the thoughts and culture of Naples. It is worth recalling that one of the oldest seats of the University of Naples was hosted in the Convent of St Dominic Major where about 5,000 students have studied. Also, in the 13th century, St Thomas Aquinas already found a particularly conducive cultural climate in the Convent of St Dominic Major where he was first a student and later a teacher.

The exhibition, which is part of the existing museum of the convent, is hosted in the charming “Corridor of St Thomas” on the first floor of the 17th century convent which is still inhabited by the Dominican friars.

It will be a rare and extraordinarily opportunity to admire the incunabula, choral and rare documents, some of which have never been shown in public because of their sensitive and fragile nature and the type of enclosure and protection they would require. Among the documents that will be on display is; the Bull of the proclamation of St Thomas Aquinas as “Doctor of the Church” with the signature of the Dominican Pope St Pius V and St Charles Borromeo, a page of the Breviary of St Dominic from the Dominican Archive and Library in Rome, and also rare and precious samples of 15th century documents specifically selected from the rich collection of the library.

These precious documents offer the possibility of an unfiltered access to a new and interesting perspective of the cultural views of the people of Naples, representing an important “sign” of history, not only of the Dominicans in Naples. 

Archives and libraries have the mandate to; “preserve” a perishable wealth, “show” the most significant examples of its own history, “teach” through the signs of the past and “trace” a new path for the future. 

For schools, there are planned educational workshops led by art historians specializing in teaching and communication.

For more information and for bookings:

 DOMA - Opera San Domenico Maggiore Onlus
 Piazza San Domenico Maggiore 8/A, Napoli



(05 April 2017)