Santa Maria Nuova

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Santa Maria Nuova, Ancona, Italy

Santa Maria Nuova is in the centre of the province of Ancona. It lies behind a hill and its origins date back to prehistoric times. This town settled in its present location only after the fifteenth century.
Suggestive evidence relating to the past of this town was found in various archaeological sites; in Pietrolone, the remains of a funerary shrine and of a villa, which were both decorated with elements that date back the Roman times, were found.
The whole territory of Santa Maria Nuova is blessed with an excellent climate and an enviable panorama due to its position on the hills that gently run down from the Apennines to the Adriatic, on the ridge dividing the valleys of the Esino and Musone rivers.
On a clear day you can see from Monte Catria to Gran Sasso; the view of the Monti Sibillini (Leonardi's "azure mountains") standing out against the sky to the south, is particularly stunning.
The church of Sant'Antonio of Padova in the central square is well known for its basilica altar with multicoloured ceramics realised by Vitali from Foligno (the first example of an altar facing the congregation after the reforms of the Vatican Council II) and a mechanical organ from the 18th century.
With its masonry facade, the church of San Giuseppe is a classic example of 18th century architecture.
The inside, is adorned with rich stucco decoration, late-baroque altars, a wooden 18th century crucifix, and a number of paintings, one of which is from the 17th century and has been attributed to Aquilini.