Medieval Gaeta

The quarter of Medieval Gaeta is steeped in history and rich in ancient monuments.  During the Middle Ages Gaeta was a fortified settlement, and flourishing port which carried out trade with countries in the eastern Mediterranean.  It was built on the rocky peninsular of Monte Orlando. Gaeta went on to evolve into an autonomous maritime Duchy ruled by Giovanni I of Gaeta and then the Docibile family for several generations. The young king of Naples, Ladislao di Durazzo took refuge at Gaeta and here in 1381 he  married his young bride Costanza Chiaramonte. Indeed many of the street names of the medieval quarter reflect Gaeta’s eventful history.

Let’s start our photo tour in the lower section of Medieval Gaeta.

Punta Stendardo The Sea Front and Via Bausan

Harbour and Punta Stendardo in Old Gaeta Italy

Gaeta Harbour and Scuola Nautica – Punta Stendardo

The Harbour in Old Medieval Gaeta Italy

   Gaeta Harbour and Scuola Nautica – Punta Stendardo

Dome of the Church of San Giovanni in Gaeta Italy

   Guardia di Finanza Training Ship – Punta Stendardo

Via Bausan in Gaeta Italy

Via Bausan

Ruins Behind Church of San Giovanni A Mare in Gaeta

  Ruins Behind Via Bausan

Street in Old Gaeta Italy

  Old House in Medieval Gaeta

Church of San Giovanni in Old Gaeta Italy

Church of San Giovanni A Mare – Via Bausan

Bell Tower of the Church of San Giovanni in Gaeta Italy

  Bell Tower – Church of San Giovanni A Mare

Dome of the Church of San Giovanni in Gaeta Italy

  Byzantine Dome – Church of San Giovanni A Mare

Doorway of the Church of San Giovanni in Gaeta Italy

Doorway of Church San Giovanni A Mare

Dome of the Church of San Giovanni in Gaeta Italy

 Roman Column – Alley off  Via Bausan

The Harbour in Old Medieval Gaeta Italy

   Alleyway off Via Bausan

Via Bausan in Gaeta Italy

Church of San Giovanni A Mare – Via Bausan

The Harbour in Old Medieval Gaeta Italy

  Gaeta Harbour – Via Bausan

Harbour and Cathedral Bell Tower in Old Medieval Gaeta Italy

  Seafront and Bell Tower – Via Docibile

Porta Domnica – Piazza Cavallo

Piazza Cavallo Gaeta Italy

Gaeta Cathedral Bell Tower – Piazza Cavallo

Medieval Town Gate Porta Domnica In Gaeta Italy

            Old Medieval Gate of Porta Domnica

            Pufui PcPifpef   CC BY-SA 4.0

Medieval Town Gate Porta Domnica In Gaeta Italy

  Old Medieval Gate of Porta Domnica

The Byzantine Bell Tower of the Cathedral of Gaeta

The Byzantine bell tower of Gaeta Cathedral dominates the historic district, not forgetting the mightly Castle.

Bell Tower of Cathedral of Saint Erasmus Gaeta Italy
Byzantine Bell Tower of the Cathedral of Gaeta Italy
Byzantine Tower Cathedral of Gaeta Italy
Byzantine Bell Tower of the Cathedral of Gaeta Italy
Stone Carving on Bell tower of Cathedral of Gaeta Italy

Bas-Relief of Jonah & the Whale – Gaeta Cathedral

Stone Carving on Bell tower of Cathedral of Gaeta Italy

  Bas-Relief and Roman Sarcophagus – Gaeta Cathedral

Roman Capital Bell Tower of the Cathedral of St Erasmus Gaeta Italy

  Roman Capital – Bell Tower of Gaeta Cathedral

Bell Tower Cathedral of St Erasmus Gaeta Italy

                Bell Tower – Gaeta Cathedral

Roman Columns Bell Tower of Cathedral of Gaeta Italy

Porch of Bell Tower – Gaeta Cathedral

Facade of the Cathedral of St Erasmus in Gaeta Italy

Archbishop’s Palace – Piazza Archivescovato

Houses built on a Rock Cliff in Gaeta Italy

  MaiolicaMadonna & Child on Archbishop’s Palace

Via Docibile

Houses built on a Rock Cliff in Gaeta Italy

The Archbishops Palace – Via Docibile

Harbour and Cathedral Bell Tower in Old Medieval Gaeta Italy

  The Harbour and Sea Front- Via Docibile

Harbour in Old Medieval Gaeta Italy

   The Harbour and Sea Front – Via Docibile

Houses built on a Rock Cliff in Gaeta Italy

Old Apartments – Via Docibile

Remains of the Old 10th Century Town Walls in Gaeta Italy

  Small Fountain – Via Docibile

Facade of the Cathedral of St Erasmus in Gaeta Italy

  Old Building – Via Docibile

Facade of the Cathedral of St Erasmus in Gaeta Italy

Old Buildings – Via Docibile

Facade of the Cathedral of St Erasmus in Gaeta Italy

  Shops and Old Buildings – Via Docibile

Houses built on a Rock Cliff in Gaeta Italy

   Old Building – Via Docibile

Remains of the Old 10th Century Town Walls in Gaeta Italy

Via Docibile

Houses built on a Rock Cliff in Gaeta Italy

  Square off Via Docibile

Houses built on a Rock Cliff in Gaeta Italy

   Square off Via Docibile and the Archbishops Palace

Vico Gaetani and the Porta Posterola

Close to the Cathedral are some ancient narrow streets and alleys that date back to the Medieval age.  During the 9th century Duke Docibile I of Gaeta enlarged the city’s fortified walls. There were the gates of the Porta del Molo and the Porta Domnica in the area of the present Piazza Cavallo. Another gate was called Porta Nuova, that was situated near the church of San Teodoro. There was also a watchtower known as Torre Giorgia or Torre Longa. This was listed in the will and testament of Duke Docibile I, dated February 906, in which he bequeaths to his daughter Bona “gold, silver, silk clothes, male and female servants ………….  together with the house and tower near to the city gate”.  

Later in the Will of Docibile II, of May 994, the gate is once again cited, being named as Porta Posterola. This was the main gateway leading into the town square. The watchtower was a lookout post to give warning of the approach of Saracen ships. The remains of this tower can still be seen today in Vico Gaetani. Its remains were incorporated into the Palazzo de Vio. The ruined the Church of San Salvatore can also be seen in this alley.  Sadly it was destroyed during the allied bombardments of Gaeta in 1943.

Destroyed Church of San Salvatore in Gaeta Italy

Remains of the destroyed Church of San Sebastiano

Arches in Vicolo Caetani in Gaeta Italy

  Arches in Vicolo Gaetani

The Old Gateway the Posterola Gaeta Italy

  The Old Porta Posterola

Vicolo Caetani in Gaeta Italia

Vicolo Gaetani

Torre Giorgia in Gaeta Italy
Vicolo Gaetani
Torre Giorgia Vicolo Caetani in Gaeta Italy

 Tower – Vicolo Gaetani

Alley Vicolo Caetani in Gaeta Italy

   Ancient Column – Vicolo Gaetani

Vicolo Gaetani in Gaeta Italy

Vicolo Gaetani

Vicolo Caetani in Gaeta Italy

  Vicolo Gaetani

Alleyway Vicolo Caetani in Gaeta Italy

  Vicolo Gaetani

Alley in Gaeta Italy

   Vicolo Gaetani

Arches in Vicolo Caetani in Gaeta Italy

Arches in Vicolo Gaetani

Alley in Old Gaeta Italy

  Vicolo Gaetani

Holy Shrine in Vicoli Gaetani in Old Gaeta Italy

   Shrine – Vicolo Gaetani

The Medieval Town Wall

Remains of the Old 10th Century Town Walls in Gaeta Italy

Section of 10th Century Town Wall

Remains of the Old 10th Century Town Walls in Gaeta Italy

  Section of 10th Century Town Wall

There are many more characteristic buildings and monuments to be seen as you wander up to the higher reaches of Medieval quarter of Gaeta. There is a fascinating warren of narrow winding streets and alleyways with steep stairways that lead upwards towards the castle. The ancient houses are randomly clustered together, some linked or supported by arches.  Some of the houses have beautiful roof gardens with spectacular views of the Bay of Gaeta.

The Docibile Palace in Via Rosmini

Steps Near Via Rosmini in Old Medieval Italy

Steps Leading up from Via Duomo to Via Rosmini

Remains of Docibile Palace in Via Rosmini in Gaeta Italy

  Remains of the Docibile Palace – Via Rosmini

Ancient Archway in Medieval Gaeta Italy

   Remains of the Docibile Palace – Via Rosmini

Archway in Old Gaeta Italy

Remains of Docibile Palace – Via Rosmini

Remains of the Dukes Palace of the Docibile Family in Gaeta Italy

Remains of Docibile Palace – Via Rosmini

Stairs and Narrow Alley in Gaeta Italy

  Alley – Via Rosmini

Alley in Old Gaeta Italy

  Alley Near Via Rosmini

Via Rosmini in Old Gaeta Italy

Alley – Via Rosmini

Via Rosmini in Old Gaeta Italy

 Alley – Via Rosmini

Holy Shrine in Old Gaeta Italy

  Shrine – Via Rosmini

Via Ladislao

Old Church Tower in Gaeta Italy

Church of Santa Barbara- Via Ladislao

Alley in Old Gaeta in Italy

  Staircase – Via Ladislao

Via Ladislao in Medieval Gaeta Italy

  Church of Santa Lucia – Via Ladislao

Old Window in Medieval Gaeta Italy

  Old Window – Via Ladislao

Church of Santa Lucia in Gaeta Italy

Church of Santa Lucia – Via Ladislao

Old Church Tower in Gaeta Italy

  Church of Santa Lucia – Via Ladislao

Old Doorway in Gaeta Italy

  Old Doorway – Via Ladislao

Via Ladislao in Medieval Gaeta Italy

    Church of Santa Lucia – Via Ladislao

Old Tower in Medieval Gaeta Italy

Tower – Via Ladislao

Church of Santa Lucia in Gaeta Italy

  Church of Santa Lucia – Via Ladislao

Church of Santa Lucia Via Ladislao Gaeta Italy

  Church of Santa Lucia – Via Ladislao

Old Stairway in Gaeta Italy

Alleyway off Via Ladislao

Ancient Alley in Medieval Gaeta Italy

  Alleyway off Via Ladislao

Doorway of Church of San Benedetto in Gaeta Italy

    Remains of Church of San Benedetto

Via Papa Pio IX

Old Tower in Gaeta Italy

Old Tower – Via Papa Pio IX

Old Window in a deserted House in Gaeta Italy

  Abandoned House – Via Papa Pio IX

View From Upper Medieval Gaeta in Italy

  Sea View off Via Papa Pio IX

Former Church of Santa Catarina in Gaeta Italy

Church of Santa Caterina

Door of the Church of Santa Caterina in Gaeta Italy

   Doorway of the Church of Santa Caterina

Church of Santa Caterina in Medieval Gaeta Italy

     Church of Santa Caterina – Via Papa Pio IX

Sea View From Upper Medieval Gaeta Italy

Church of Santa Caterina – Via Papa Pio IX

Dome of the Church of San Domenico in Gaeta Italy

  Bell Tower of the Church of San Domenico

Roof of the Church of San Domenico in Gaeta Italy

 Roof of the Church of San Domenico

Chiesa di San Domenico in Gaeta Italy

Church of San Domenico – Via Aragonese

Bell Tower of Church of San Domenico in Gaeta Italy

  Bell Tower – Church of San Domenico

Bell Tower of the Church of San Domenico in Gaeta Italy

  Bell Tower – Church of San Domenico

Doorway of Church of San Domenico in Medieval Gaeta Italy

    Doorway – Church of San Domenico

Small square off Via Aragonese in Medieval Gaeta Italy

Door of Monastery Santa Maria di Maina

Old Doorway in Medieval Gaeta Italy

 Door of Monastery Santa Maria di Maina

Old Stairway in Gaeta Italy

  Old Stairway Leading Up To The Castle

Tower of the Castle of Gaeta Italy

   One of the Towers of the Anjou Castle

Via Aragonese

Gaeta Castle in Italy

The Castle – Via Aragonese

Gaeta Castle in Italy

                      The Castle – Via Aragonese

Rocky Coastline of Gaeta Italy

           Sea View near the Castle

Tower of the Castle of Gaeta Italy

One of the Towers of the Anjou Castle

Shrine on the Exterior of the Castle of Gaeta Italy

 Shrine Beneath the Castle

Shrine below the Castle of Gaeta Italy

  Shrine Beneath the Castle

The Old Medieval Quarter of Gaeta in Italy

 One of the Towers of the Anjou Castle

View of the Medieval Old Town of Gaeta in Italy

View of the Medieval Old Town of Gaeta and Castle

View of the Medieval Old Town of Gaeta in Italy

 View of the Medieval Old Town of Gaeta

View of Medieval Gaeta in Italy

   View of the Medieval Old Town of Gaeta

Via Angioina

Old Gaeta in Italy

 View of the Medieval Old Town of Gaeta

Garden in Medieval Gaeta Italy

  Garden in the Medieval Old Town – Via Angioina

Old Roof and Church of San Francesco in Gaeta Italy

   Old Roof Top and the Church of San Francesco

Chiesa Dell'Ulivo o Della Nativita in Gaeta Italy

Chiesa dell’Ulivo o della Natività

Doorway of the Church

 Doorway of Chiesa dell’Ulivo o della Natività

Pinoteca Comunale Gaeta Italy

    Pinacoteca Comunale – Via Angioina

Chiesa Dell'Ulivo o Della Nativita in Gaeta Italy

Side View of the Chiesa dell’Ulivo o della Natività

Inscription by the Chiesa Dell'Ulivo o Della Nativita in Gaeta Italy

 Epigraph outside the Chiesa dell’Ulivo o della Natività

Doorway of the Pinacoteca Comunale in Gaeta Italy

    Doorway of the Pinacoteca Comunale – Via Angioina

Morning Glory Vine in Gaeta Italy

Garden with Ipomea or Morning Glory

View From Old Town Gaeta in Italy

  Terrace With Sea View – Via Angioina

Bougainvillea In Gaeta Italy

  Garden With Bougainvillea & Sea View – Via Angioina

Bell Tower of the Church Santissima Annunzia in Gaeta Italy

Sea View and Bell tower of the SS Annunziata

Bell Tower of the Church Santissima Annunzia in Gaeta Italy

Sea View and Bell tower of the Church of SS Annunziata

Church of San Francesco in Gaeta Italy

  Church of San Francesco

Church of San Francesco in Gaeta Italy

Staircase up to the Church of San Francesco

Church of San Francesco in Gaeta Italy

   Facade of the Church of San Francesco 

Statue by the Church of San Francesco in Gaeta Italy

  Statue of the Religion

Statue Outside the Church of San Francesco in Gaeta Italy

   Statue of Church of San Francesco 

MorView of the Medieval Old Town of Gaeta Italy

 View of Old Gaeta from the Church of San Francesco

View of the Medieval Old Town of Gaeta Italy

 View of Old Gaeta from the Church of San Francesco

View of the Old Medieval Gaeta Italy

   View of Old Gaeta from the Church of San Francesco

Piazza Commestibili

Remains of the Tower of Giovanni I in Gaeta Italy

  Tower of  the Palace of Giovanni I

Remains of the Tower of Giovanni I in Gaeta Italy

  Remains of Tower of  Palace of Giovanni I

Piazza Traniello

 Piazza Traniello

Piazza Traniello in Gaeta Italy

Castle from Piazza Traniello

Piazzale Giovanni Caboto Gaeta Italy

Piazzale Caboto

Portico of the Gran Guardia – Piazza Traniello

Old Window in Medieval Gaeta Italy

The Old Palazzo Comunale – Piazza Traniello

 Portico of Gran Guardia  – Piazza Traniello

   Statue Gran Guardia – Piazza  Traniello

   Gran Guardia – Piazza Traniello

Ancient Archway in Medieval Gaeta Italy

Gran Guardia ex Circolo Ufficiali –  Piazza Traniello

The Gran Guardia is a building in a neoclassical style. It was a military barracks commissioned by the Bourbon King Charles III of Spain, Naples and Sicily.  It was designed by Pietro Paolo Ferrari, and was constructed in 1786 during the reign of King Ferdinand IV.  It has a long elegant portico. Above this is a sundial which dates from 1852 and two sculptures of miliary arms and trophies. The building is soon to undergo much need restoration

Piazza Traniello

  Piazza Traniello

Church of Santa Maria Sorresca in Gaeta Italy

  Church of Santa Maria Sorresca – Piazza Traniello

Via Duomo

Stone Inscription in Gaeta Italy

Inscription – Via Duomo

Old Courtyard in Gaeta Italy

  Old Courtyard – Via Duomo

Palazzo De Meo

Palazzo de Veo – Museo Diocesano

Houses built on a Rock Cliff Via Duomo Gaeta Italy

Rock Cliff – Via Duomo

Facade of the Cathedral of St Erasmus in Gaeta Italy

  Facade of Gaeta Cathedral – Via Duomo

The Palazzo De Vio and the Archbishop’s Seminary was built on the remains of an earlier buildings dating from the Renaissance era. The palace belonged to Cardinal Tommaso De Veo. The building has been refurbished many times over the centuries. It is now the Diocesan Museum and houses many works of art from many of the old Churches of Gaeta.  the building has been repeatedly refurbished, changing its appearance to its origins. The facade that we see today is the work of Federico Traveglini.