What (maybe) you don’t know about the Basilica of San Petronio in Bologna.
It is the sixth largest church in Christianity, but it should have been the largest. This is not a defect because it exalts the uniqueness of the basilica, given that it was built without any economic contribution from the papacy and the Church, but thanks to the Bolognese and the patrician families who financed the work.
From the original project that involved the construction of the largest basilica in the world, the funds raised by the Bolognese civil society did not allow to reach the result, leaving however a beautiful church symbol of faith but also of independence.
The idea of completing the Basilica resurfaced many years later, precisely in 1933, when a new competition was launched, once again blocked by the Minister of Education Pietro Fedele because he did not share the project.
Since then, no one has proposed to complete the San Petronio project.
Only in 1954, on October 3rd, the Basilica of San Petronio was consecrated by Cardinal Giacomo Lercaro, declaring the “end of the works”: the construction of the church was definitively finished, also with regard to the facade. Exactly 564 years after the laying of the first stone.