Taken within the entrance cloister at Monte Cassino Abbey, Italy.
The Abbey on Monte Cassino was originally founded by Saint Benedict in 529, making it one of Europe's oldest monasteries. The abbey was built on remnants of Roman fortifications near the Temple of Apollo. Monte Cassino Abbey was destroyed by the Longobards around 577, rebuilt, and again destroyed in 833 by the Saracens. In the tenth century the monastery was again opened and was filled with beautiful manuscripts, mosaics, and works of enamel and gold. After being destroyed by an earthquake in 1349, it was reconstructed again with many additions.
During World War II the monastery became a refuge for civilians. On February 15, 1944, the monastery was bombed and largely destroyed, killing many civilians. The abbey was carefully reconstructed following the original plan and today it is hard to tell that it has been destroyed and rebuilt four times.
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Monte cassino abbey
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