Il presepe di S. Agostino

The neapolitan style of Nativity scene is distinguished from other similar manifestations by its rich and spectacular setting achieved through the participation of an extremely wide range of artists and crafts, men who, with their imagination and skill, were able to riproduce the daily life of ordinary people in the cities of the south of Italy as the main yarn with which to weave the religious event of the birth of Jesus.
The crib in St. Agostino’s church, born from the desire to share a great passion, continues to be a point of contact between different generations. It was made originally modelled on the Neapolitan crib of the eighteenth century and placed on the side altar of the same church. It has acquired over the years a characteristic that distinguishes it in the outline of Salerno’s artistic cribs by inserting the original structure, various faithful reproductions of monuments and historical places of the city centre.
As a result of the many subsequent fitting in was needed a new arrangement in the contiguous room called St. Antonio de’ Nobili. The growing approach between the sacredness of the crib and our territorial reality has not upset the features of the eighteen century neapolitan crib from which it has originated.
The neapolitan tradition wants to highlight the transition from the decadent Paganism to the new Christian faith, placing the Holy Family on the ruins of pagan buildings instead of franciscan cave.

To keep faith this feature and draw inspiration from our urban reality, we have placed the Nativity in the seventeenth – century portal of Palazzo Ruggi d’Aragona, with the poetic background of the Nettuno fountain. Other typical elements of the eighteenth – century neapolitan crib are the details about the gastronomic specialities, whose opulence contrasts with the humility of the sacred family. Moreover the continuous reminder to water and its slow flow, creates a striking background to the extraordinariness of the Event.