Church of Santa Maria della Vittoria


Staiti Chiesa.......1(Enzo Galluccio)

The present th ree-aisled Baroque church dedicated to Santa Maria della Vittoria [Our Lady of Victory] was developed from an older two-aisled late-Renaissance church built towards the end of the sixteenth century. About a century later the original building was enlarged and embellished to better cater for the increasing spiritual needs of a growing community. Work began during the last decade of the seventeenth century and ended in 1699 as the epigraph over the portal recalls: VICTRIX VIRGO TUIS / VICTRICIA SUGGERE TELA / NIGRAS QUEIS DITIS / VERTERE CASTRA DATUR / CIVIUM PIETAS A FUNDAMENTIS / AUXIT ET ORNAVIT / SINDICO DIDACO LEOCANI / ANNO DOMINI 1699. [The Victorious Virgin to your inhabitants will concede victorious weapons, so as to destroy the bastions of Satan. The piety of the citizens enlarged and adorned from the foundations. Mayor Didaco Leocani in the Year of the Lord, 1699].

During the seventeenth century the church contained the Chapels of Saint Blaise, of Mount Carmel, of the Souls in Purgatory, of the Rosary and of the Most Blessed Sacrament. Those of Jesus and Mary, Saints Vincent and Francis of Paola were added later and much more recently those of St. Joseph, Our Lady of Good Succour and the Sacred Heart. Until the first half of the twentieth century a noteworthy painting of the Allegoria della Battaglia di Lepanto [Allegory of the Battle of Lepanto] with Saints Nicholas and Francis was on the main altar; the same sector contains an altar in white Carrara and polychrome marble, dating from 1763, which once stood in the side chapel now dedicated to Saint Joseph.

Principal works of art 

At the end of the left-hand aisle stands the beautiful statue in white Carrara marble of the Madonna and Child by Martino Regi, dated 1622. The grandiose belltower with its characteristic steepled roof and weight-driven clock (dated 1911) was built during the first half of the eighteenth century. It also contains three bells: the largest from 1722, the medium one from 1684 and the small one cast in1967.

In the right-hand aisle of the church we find two splendid Baroque altars dedicated to Saints Vincent and Anthony built in 1704. In this same area we find the epigraph from the tomb of the priests commissioned by archpriests Leocani and Carneri in 1711. Supported by two wooden columns, and situated above the main entrance, is the choir loft with its pipe organ, unserviceable since the first half of the twentieth century; beside the columns one can still admire what remains of the archpriest, Lorenzo Musitano’s (1848 – 1849) holy water font.

The 1783, an earthquake caused only some slight damage to the building. However, those of 1907 and 1908 damaged it seriously, bringing down the ceilings of the three aisles which shared the same architectural features as those we are fortunate enough to be able to admire today in the half dome over the main altar in the central nave and in the chapel of St. Joseph at the end of the left-hand aisle.The church contains ancient vestments and sacred objects including a silver chalice and monstrance from the eighteenth century.

Text by Professor Fortunato Stelitano

Tipo Risorsachiese

how to reach us

Da Reggio Calabria percorre la SS 106. Una volta giunti a Brancaleone, al bivio, imboccare la strada che indica Staiti.


Comune di Staiti -