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The Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi after the September 1997 Earthquake

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The Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi was hit by the strong earthquake that struck central Italy in the night of 26 September 1997, and a second, stronger quake again shook the Basilica at 11:42 a.m. resulting in the collapse of two frescoed vaults of the upper Basilica, and considerable damage to the tympanum, a masonry wall of cavity construction, at a transept. Cracks, partial collapses and permanent deformations were initiated throughout the Convent. This paper reports on the activities of the first structural experts summoned to the scene, and on the urgent measures that were carried out to stabilize this monument.

Keywords: Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi (Italy); Gothic cathedrals; Restoration; Tympanums; Vaults

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 1998-02-01

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    Structural Engineering International (SEI), the quarterly Journal of IABSE, published since 1991, is the leading international journal of structural engineering dealing with all types of structures and materials. SEI offers its readers a unique blend of short profiles on recent structures, and longer, in-depth technical articles on research, development, design, construction and maintenance. Articles are written by practicing engineers and academia from around the world and reflect the high standards of IABSE. IABSE Peer Review stamps are given to papers that have passed through a highly selective review process and demonstrate a significant contribution to the state of structural engineering knowledge.To recognise contributions of the highest quality, an Outstanding Paper Award is presented each year.

    SEI is printed in Switzerland; ISSN 1016-8664; E-ISSN 1683-0350
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