The Monumental Cemetery of Staglieno


Staglieno owes its popularity and historic value not only to the fame of the great personalities who rest there but, avove all, to its many sculptural and architectural monuments which share the same area creating a variegated harmony. Althought still unfinished, the cemetery was officially inaugurated on January 1, 1851. Giovanni Battista Resasco was entrusted to continue the original project of his master, the architect Carlo Barabino (1768-1835). The architecture of the cemetery reveals the same Neoclassic style of many representative Genoese buildings of that period, such as the Carlo Felice Theatre and the Palazzo dell'Accademia. The plant of the original nucleus is quadrangular; in the run of the years the cemetery spread up to include the surrounding vegetation, creating a very picturesque fusion with the natural environment. The artistic languages of over a century, from Neoclassicism to Realism, up to Symbolism, Art Nouveau, Art Deco and on, are here displayed and they find their interpreters in a school of sculptors whose works are known far beyond the regional and national borders. Nietzsche, Guy de Maupassant, Mark Twain and Elisabeth of Austria (the famous Empress Sissi) are some of the many great historic and literary scholars, travellers, artists and philosophers who were deeply fascinated by Staglieno and left written testimonies of their impressions.


Campodonico Tomb (1881) 

Sculptor  Lorenzo Orengo (1838-1909)
The tomb of Caterina Campodonico, the “nut seller”, is certainly the best-known monument, the one which more than any other has a place in the collective memory and imagination. She was a very popular character in fairs and traditional feasts; while she was still alive, she commissioned her own funeral monument and paid it with the money she earned throught her assiduous trade. The sculpture reproduces the features and traditional clothing of the hawker, who –with the same pride that prodded entrepreneurs and professional men on having themselves depicted surrounded by the concrete symbols of their wealth and social position – has had herself represented with the objects of her trade (the necklace of nuts, the twisted loaves, the doughnuts). It was not by chance that Caterina Campodonico wanted Lorenzo Orengo (1838-1909) to portray her, as he was the most successful sculptor among the Genoese bourgeoisie.

Campodonico  tomb (1881)

Sculptor Lorenzo Orengo (1838-1909)




Valente Celle Tomb  (1893)

Sculptor: Giulio Monteverde (Bistagno, Alessandria, 1837 - Roma 1917)
The funeral monument called "Eternal Drama" represents a real Dans macabre, the futile attempt of life to escape the inevitable embrace of death. 
The sculptor Giulio Monteverde underlines, in this sculpture, the contrast between the sensuality of the beautiful young woman who personifies Life (caught in the moment in which , wearied by the vain struggle, she is about to surrender herself to the terrible spectre who has chosen her as his prey) and the rigid impassiveness of Death which seizes her.



Valente Celle tomb (1893) 
Sculptor: Giulio Monteverde (Bistagno, Alessandria, 1837 - Roma 1917)

Oneto tomb (1882)

Sculptor: Giulio Monteverde (Bistagno, Alessandria, 1837 - Roma 1917)

This tomb was commissioned by Francesco Oneto, a rich merchant and President of the "Banca Generale". The angel, holding the trumpet of the Universal Judgment with its right hand, offers no consolatory gesture, but seems distant and imperturbable. The sensuality of this statue deeply shocked the contemporaries but enijoyed a greet success as well: it was replicated countless times, both by the artist himself and by his imitators; it can be found in various versions in many cemiteries in Italy, France, Germany, England and in North and South America.

Oneto tomb(1882),

Sculptor: Giulo Monteverde (Bistagno, Alessandria, 1837 - Roma 1917) 




Tomb Pienovi (1879)

Sculptor: Giovanni Battista Villa (Genoa 1832 - 1899)

This monument was commissioned by Virginia Aprile, the widow of Raffaele Pienovi. Only an inscription commemorates the social role of the deceased, a merchant of  "prosperous and celebrated virtue". The widow wished her hausband to be remembered in a private, domestic dimension: and indeed the sculptured group, arranged over the sarcophagus, shows the wife bent over her hausband death bed, as she lifts the sheet to look at him for a last time. Villa's realistic language, his search for details - evident in this case both in the clothing and the setting of a bourgeois interior - is exalted here by the highly dramatic composition of the scene, which places the observer squarely in front of the tragic mystery of death, without any simbolic mediation or consolatory message. Indeed, during the 1870s and 1880s, rapresentations of the deceased on the deathbed , less and less filtered by the classic repertoire of the form of "rest" or "sleep", progressively take on the concrete meaning of the "presence of death for itself" 

Pignone Tomb (1867)

Sculptor: Giuseppe Benetti (Genoa 1825 – 1914) 

This crudely realistic and severe work by Benetti offers perhaps the first example of the representation of “death for itself”, which recurs in the bourgeois Realism of the 1870s and 1880s: the young woman, portrayed on her deathbed, bears cleary on her face – wich is left uncovered by the lifted veil – evident signs of a long illness. She is observed from the wall by the bust of her husband, Giuseppe Pignone. He was a rich businessman well known as one of the foundersin 1871 of Lloyd Italia, a large shipping company, and for his various public offices. However, the memory of the classic funerary apparatus is still present in the upper section of the monument, with the front of the gabled sarcophagus surmounted by a cross ad franked by two angels representing the allegories of Prayer (the one to the left) and Resurrection (the one to the right).


Ester Piaggio Tomb (1885)

sculptor: Giovanni Scanzi.

Giovanni Scanzi (Genoa 1840/1915) artist appreciated from the city upper middle class client-protagonist of monumental toms in the cemetery of Staglieno and Director of the School of Sculpture in the Ligustica from 1879 to 1892.



Raggio tomb (1872)

Sculptor: Augusto Rivalta (Alessandria 1837 – Florence 1925) 

The tomb represents the grief of the relatives gathered at the bedside of the elderly paterfamilias Carlo.



Gilberto Govi tomb (details) - 1966

Gilberto Govi (born Amerigo Armando Gilberto Govi, Genoa 22 October 1885; died 28 April 1966) was an Italian actor, founder of the Genoese Dialectal Theatre.
His greatest successes were "I manezzi pe majâ na figgia" (I maneggi per maritare una figlia, The handlings for make a daughter married), "Pignasecca e Pignaverde" (Dry-Pinecone and Green-Pinecone) and "Colpi di Timone" (Rudder Blows). Also famous in Italy, especially Genoa and Liguria, are Quello buonanima, Gildo Peragallo, ingegnere (Gildo Peragallo, engineer), I Gustavino e i Passalacqua (The Gustavinos and the Passalacquas) and Sotto a chi tocca (Who's the next?).



Commonwealth burials of the First World War.

The Italians entered the war on the Allied side, declaring war on Austria, in May 1915. Commonwealth forces were at the Italian front between November 1917 and November 1918, and rest camps and medical units were established at various locations in northern Italy behind the front, some of them remaining until 1919. From November 1917 to the end of the war, Genoa was a base for commonwealth forces and the 11th General, and 38th and 51st Stationary Hospitals, were posted in the city. Staglieno Cemetery contains 230 Commonwealth burials of the First World War.

Commonwealth burials of the Second World War.

Staglieno Cemetery contains 122 Commonwealth graves of the Second World War,
most of them garrison burials, other brought in from the surrounding country



Delmas Tomb 1909

Sculptor: Luigi Orengo  (Genoa 1865-1940)

The inscription of the Delmas tomb says: “Et rose, elle a vecu ce que vivent les roses, l’espace d’un matin” (She, a rose, has lived like roses the breath of a morning). Maria Francesca Delmas, the young girl buried here, died in a car accident when she was only 25 years old on March 1908 and Luigi Orengo treated the theme of the broken young life in a very novel way creating this sculpture of a young man, sitting on the sarcophagus, holds up and embraces the lifeless body of the girl, kissing her for the last time. Really a masterpiece.
The title by the sculptor was “The last kiss”. This work was well accepted by the public and critics, who admired the rough and strong performance.

Italino Iacomelli  Tomb, 1925

Sculptor: Adolph Lucarini (Genoa 1890-1959) 
This is  the grave of Italino Iacomelli, a child dead 16 August 1925 five years old, victim of a mad killer while it played in the publics garden with its hoop. Its mother already was died. The father, Donatello Iacomelli (1889/1976) has been buried in this grave where the mother rests also.
The scultor Adolph Lucarini (Genoa 1890-1959) is a famous Genoese artist present in Staglieno with other works.


Raggio tomb (1872)

Sculptor: Augusto Rivalta (Alessandria 1837 – Florence 1925

The tomb represents the grief of the relatives gathered at the bedside of the elderly paterfamilias Carlo.




The Venzano Tomb (1880)

Sculptor:  Paolo Domenico Valle,



Burial monument of the Ribaudo Family - Angel - 1910

Sculptor: Onorato Toso

Parodi Tomb (1910)

Sculptor:  E. Rigacci 



Burial sculpture Monument of the Salvetti Family - detail (1939)

Sculptor: De Albertis Edoardo

Ammirato  Tomb (1917)

Sculptor: E. De Albertis

Burial monument of the Varagnolo Family - Detail  (1921)

Sculptor: E. Rigacci


Queirolo Tomb (1903)

Sculptor V. Lavezzari. 



Bonini Tomb ( 1909)

Sculptor:  L. Belli



Burrano tomb

Sculptor Piero da Verona

Burial monument of the CALCAGNO Family (1904)

Sculptor: Adolfo Apolloni
Winged feminine figure

Olivari Tomb (1909)

Sculptor:  Gastaldi.




Molinari tomb 



Rolla Tomb  (1865)

Sculptor:  Giovanni Isola 

The Rolla family was among the largest textile entrepreneurs since the 1840s and owned numerous cotton mills in the land around Genoa. The female figure rests on a sarcophagus decorated with phytomorphic motifs and classic funerary symbols, such as the winged hourglass (symbol of flying time) and the owl.

Giuseppe Benedetto Badaracco Tomb (1878)

Sculptor: Giacomo Moreno (Ceriale 1835 - 1910)



Amerigo Tomb  (1890)

Sculptor:  G. Moreno 


Pietro Badaracco Tomb (1876)

Sculptor: G.B. Cevasco 



Lavarello-Anselmi Tomb (1926)

Sculptor:  L. Brizzolara
Another tomb representing the grief of the family gathered at the bedside of the loved one. 

Lavarello-Anselmi Tomb (1926)

Sculptor:  L. Brizzolara





Erba tomb (1883)

Sculptor: Santo Saccomanno (Genoa 1833 -1914)

The female figure – seated on the sarcophagus, her eyes closet and with poppy seeds in her hand, pagan symbol of eternal oblivion – shocked the contemporaries – also because of the air of sensuality emanated by the woman’s bare shoulder – so much that an American publisher, in 1901, commercialised it as a stereoscopic image. The sculpture was repeated in the following years in various replicas, particulary in North and South America.



Sepulchral Monument of the Scorza Family   (1929) 

Sculptor: De Albertis Edoardo
Last Leave (commiato supremo)

Burial monument of  DELL'ACQUA Family

Sculptor: Domenico Fossati
Feminine figure, detail. XX Century second quarter

Burial monument of  ACQUARONE Family - (1899)

Sculptor: S. Saccomanno


Burial monument of  Lavarello Family - 1914

Sculptor: Demetrio Paernio
Detail of the last work of the sculptor Demetrio Paernio

Burial sculpture Monument of  Salvetti Family  (1939)

Sculptor: De Albertis Edoardo


Group burial Monument of  Danero Family (XX Century second quarter)

Sculptor: Noris Amedeo

Olivari Tomb (1909)

Sculptor:  Gastaldi





 Amerigo Tomb (1890)

Sculptor:  G. Moreno 





Piaggio Tomb (1873)

Sculptor:  Giuseppe Benetti (Genoa 1825-1914)

The widow coming out of the chapel with a prayer-book in her hand.





Burial monument of Manzi-Bernocco Family

Sculptor: A. Scotto



Olivari Tomb (1909)

Sculptor:  Gastaldi



Fassio Tomb