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Italy’s Best Museums: 10 Highlights You Can’t Miss

Treasury Museum of San Gennaro, Naples

The Treasury Museum of San Gennaro is a special destination, essential for understanding a key aspect of Neapolitan culture: the deep devotion to the city's patron saint. It houses an extraordinary collection of silverware and jewelry, considered one of the most precious in the world, having been gifted over the centuries by monarchs, popes and celebrities in honor of the saint.

These pieces are not only of economic value but also of artistic importance and were produced by renowned craftsmen from the famous Neapolitan school of goldsmiths. FYI, between the 1600s and 1800s, Naples goldsmith workshops produced approximately 70% of all silver in Europe!

Highlights of the museum include the gilded silver tiara set with 3,692 rubies, emeralds and diamonds, and the San Gennaro Necklace, a large gold chain set with sapphires and emeralds and decorated with jewels donated over the years. These include the precious cross presented by Napoleon's brothers. The saint's treasures also include donations from ordinary citizens, such as a pair of pearl earrings donated by survivors of the 1884 cholera epidemic.

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