Church of Santo Stefano


Church of Santo Stefano

The “pieve” (Parish) of Novellara was probably established in the 5th century. 

Although the reconstruction of the church began in 1512, it was soon interrupted and only resumed in 1567, when Alfonso I Gonzaga decided to entrust the project to Lelio Orsi. In the same year, Pope Pius V conferred the title of collegiate church. It was only in 1582 when the religious building was completed. The bell tower was built between 1616 and 1620, and later, in 1642, important renovations carried out by Niccolò Sebregondi gave the church the appearance it still retains. The facade – designed by Gian Battista Cattani Cavallari – was built in 1753. The four statues that still adorn the facade were sculpted by Antonio Ilarioni in 1858, while later, in 1866, the church became part of the diocese of Guastalla. The consecration took place on June 27, 1902. In the second half of the 20th century, several renovation works brought the church to its former glory.