Benghazi Cathedral

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A view of the Cathedral in the 1960s, along the city's corniche

Benghazi Cathedral is a former Roman Catholic cathedral in the city of Benghazi, Libya. It is located in the city center and is currently[when?] disused and undergoing renovation work.


Benghazi Cathedral was built between 1929 and 1939, and was one of the largest churches in North Africa.[1] The building was later used as a headquarters for the Arab Socialist Union.[2]

It later became vacant and derelict. As of 2009, the cathedral and its entire site are currently under renovation by an Italian company.

Architectural features

The building is an example of neo-classical architecture, and was designed by Italian architects Guido Ottavo and Cabiati Ferrazza. The cathedral's architecture is based on that of a basilica. The entrance has a portico with six Doric columns. Its two characteristic domes cover both spans of the nave, while a series of oculi provide the cathedral's lighting. The building is heavily inspired by Italian religious architecture. Original plans show that the cathedral was not completed as planned; the drawings included a three story bell tower which was never built. It is nevertheless one of the largest churches in North Africa.

See also


  1. BENGHAZI:Former cathedral.
  2. Eljahmi, Mohamed, (Winter 2006), Libya and the U.S.: Qadhafi Unrepentant, pp. 11-20, Middle East Quarterly , Accessed 16 June 2009.

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