Piazza Inferiore di San Francesco (Lower Square of St Francis), Assisi

Piazza Inferiore di San Francesco (Lower Square of St Francis), Assisi

In the 16th century Fra Ludovico da Pietralunga wrote about the Lower Square of Saint Francis, "It is longer than wide..." He also pointed out the square was lined with arcades sheltering 75 shops which "served merchants." Pope Gregory XI wanted to head off the unseemly stampede of small business into the square by setting up stall space.

The arcade stalls were handy in August during the feast of St Francis. From the beginning the square was a sociable place, serving crowds of visitors coming to and from the Basilica. The square was originally laid out in 1253. It is framed by 15th century porticos with access to San Bernardino Oratory and the Lower Basilica.

The Piazza is an enclosed area, as the good brother said, "...longer than wide..." On the north side of the square there is a steep staircase and a slope leading to the upper square. The lower square is bounded on three sides by arcades and columns. The shape of the square is reminiscent of a Renaissance version of a medieval cloister.

The square is in front of and on a side of the Basilica. It is the best place to view the Basilica and the stunning sight of the Umbrian fields below. For the best first view of the square, enter from the arch over the via Frate Elia.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Assisi. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Piazza Inferiore di San Francesco (Lower Square of St Francis) on Map

Sight Name: Piazza Inferiore di San Francesco (Lower Square of St Francis)
Sight Location: Assisi, Italy (See walking tours in Assisi)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Assisi, Italy

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Create Your Own Walk in Assisi

Creating your own self-guided walk in Assisi is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Assisi Introduction Walking Tour

Assisi Introduction Walking Tour

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Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.9 Km or 1.2 Miles
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Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.2 Km or 2 Miles