The CHURCH OF SANTA BARBARA is a small building located next to the Basilica of Sant’Apollinare Nuovo, one of the eight monuments that make up the Unesco World Heritage site in Ravenna.
According to some sources, the church was built at the beginning of the 9th century AD, when it was owned by the Benedictine monks living in the convent adjacent to the nearby Theodoric-age Basilica.
The church is closely related to the events concerning the Church of San Salvatore ad Calchis – the religious building built on the ruins of Theodoric’s Palace – and reached its maximum splendour between 1513 and 1821, when it became a parish.
As a consequence of Napoleon’s suppressions, which imposed the reduction of the number of parishes and churches, at the beginning of the 19th century the Church of Santa Barbara was closed and then merged with the Basilica of Santa Maria in Porto.
The building was deconsecrated and sold, the canvas hanging on the main altar was transferred in the corridor near the sacristy of Santa Maria in Porto and the big painting depicting the Madonna of Loreto was placed above the altar of San Lorenzo.
After the bombings of World War II, the former Church of Santa Barbara became a private residence and was then converted into a workshop in the 70s.
The church has been recently acquired by a private who is financing renovation works on the whole complex.