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This medieval church is one of our favorites in Campania. Its unique design singles it out as an architectural marvel and shows the intermingling of Longobard and Christian cultures. Begun in 762 by the Longobard Arechi II when he became Duke of Benevento, the church's star-shaped structure is a central hexagon, covered by a dome, and supported by six powerful columns; around this are eight square pillars and two columns topped by Corinthian capitals. The pillars are aligned with the surrounding walls, which are part circle and part star, creating a strange perspective. In the apse are fragments of a great cycle of frescoes from the 8th century, representing, among other things, scenes of the life of Saint Zaccaria; the surrounding walls are decorated with representations of nature and symbols derived from the Longobard religion. The bell tower stands alone, isolated from the church; it was redone in 1703. Attached to the church is the monastery, now housing the Museo del Sannio. It was actually a Benedictine convent founded in conjunction with the church. It became one of the most powerful monasteries in Italy during the 12th century, famous for its type of writing, "scriptorium Beneventanum." Note: The church was undergoing restoration at presstime, with no date announced for the reopening.