According to Gian Galeazzo Visconti, the first Duke of Milan, the stunning building should be a temple capable of reflecting an aspiration to greatness as a nation within the context of Europe. But, above all, it should exude both human and spiritual peace. Just a brief look at the records of the Veneranda Fabbrica, dating back to 1386, in order to see the enormous financial and professional contributions made by the inhabitants of Milan in building their temple. While its construction took 630 years, its giant gothic style with 135 spires, its “forest” of pinnacles linked between each other by flying buttresses, shows no sign of discontinuity, since its builders remained faithful to its original vision. Since 1386, the year in which the first stone was placed, countless contributions were made by “gothic” artists from Germany, France and Hungary. The work on the new facade was, for instance, only begun in 1791. It was Napoleone Bonaparte, on the eve of his coronation in 1805, that really pushed for the work on the structure to be rapidly completed. The Veneranda Fabbrica - engaged in caring for and promoting the Duomo for over six centuries - is also the owner of the Candoglia marble quarry, a wondrous yet fragile material, used by sculptors to reproduce the statues, spires and the stones that decorate the church which eventually suffer the trials of time.