The Basilica di Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, usually just called the Frari, is a church located in the Campo dei Frari at the heart of the San Polo district of Venice, Italy. One of the most prominent churches in the city, it has the status of a minor basilica. The church is dedicated to the Assumption of Mary.
The imposing edifice is built of brick, and is one of the city's three notable churches still mostly retaining their Venetian Gothic appearance. In common with many Franciscan churches, the exterior is rather plain, even on the front facade. The interior is notable for a large number of very grand wall monuments to distinguished Venetians buried in the church, including a number of Doges and the painter Titian. Many of these are important works in the history of Venetian sculpture, and the many paintings include two large and important altarpieces by Titian, the Assumption of the Virgin on the high altar and the Pesaro Madonna. It also contains the only rood screen still in place in Venice.
In 1231, under Doge Jacopo Tiepolo, the city donated land at this site to establish a monastery and church belonging to the Franciscan Order of Friars Minor. This edifice proved too small and a three nave church was begun in 1250, and not completed until 1338. Work almost immediately began on its much larger replacement, the current church, which took over a century to build. The new church inverted the original orientation, thus placing the facade facing the plaza and small canal. The work was started under Jacopo Celega, but completed by his son Pier Paolo. The campanile, the second tallest in the city after that of San Marco, was completed in 1396. Under the patronage of Giovanni Corner, the Chapel of San Marco was added in 1420. In 1432-1434 the bishop Vicenza Pietro Miani built the chapel of San Pietro next to the bell-tower. The facade was not completed until 1440, with the cornice is surmounted by three statues (1516) by Lorenzo Bregno The main altar was consecrated in 1469. In 1478, the Pesaro family commissioned a chapel in the apse. On 27 May 1492, the church was consecrated with the name of Santa Maria Gloriosa.
The Frari is a parish church of the Vicariate of San Polo-Santa Croce-Dorsoduro. Other churches of the parish are San Barnaba, San Ludovico Vescovo, Santa Maria del Soccorso and Santa Margherita. The Franciscans had been expelled from the church during the 19th century, the church was restored to the order in 1922.
Titian, the most prominent 16th-century Venetian painter, is interred in the Frari.
Giambattista Pittoni, Hagar in the desert
Bartolomeo Bon the Virgin and St. Francis on the west front
Lorenzo Bregno tomb of Benedetto Pésaro
Girolamo Campagna,St Anthony of Padua
Girolamo Campagna, St Agnes
Donatello, St. John the Baptist
Tullio Lombardo, tomb of Pietro Bernardo
Antonio Rizzo, tomb of Doge Niccolò Tron
Jacopo Sansovino, St. John the Baptist
High altar showing Assumption of the Virgin by Titian
Paolo Veneziano, Doge Francesco Dandolo and His Wife Presented to the Virgin by Ss. Francis and Elizabeth
Alessandro Vittoria The Risen Christ
Alessandro Vittoria St. Jerome
Alvise Vivarini St. Ambrose and other Saints
Bartolomeo Vivarini St. Mark Enthroned
Bartolomeo Vivarini Madonna and Child with Saints