The construction of the building is closely related to the birth of the Dominican monastery dedicated to Vincenzo Ferrer, who, through the work of Sister Caterina de’ Ricci, had a significant impact on that century. The church built in 1500 was modified in 1700 when Sister Caterina was canonized and became a strong religious example for the Florentine and Tuscan community. Once her body was buried under the main altar, the church was made a minor basilica. The artistic style is classified as late Baroque and boasts frescoes, altars, stucco work and extraordinary tapestries. The marble altar boasts a bas relief of Saint Catherine embracing the crucifix; the silver urn with the saint’s body is below.
The church also houses a 16th century Nativity by Michele delle Colombe, canvases by Pucci, a 15th century relief of Madonna and Child by Matteo Civitali, and the Martyrdom of Saint Catherine of Alessandria by Vincenzo Meucci. On the side of the church is the cloistered monastery founded in 1503 and later enlarged during the life of Caterina de’ Ricci. The atrium leads to the Papalini Madonna Chapel which houses the 16th century majolica bust that stopped the Spanish from destroying the convent during the 1512 Sack of Prato. The altar boasts works by Michele delle Colombe including two panels with the Assumption and Scenes from the Passion; it also houses precious paintings by Pignoni, Lorenzo Lippi, Ridolfo and Ghirlandaio. There is a beautiful altarpiece by Michele Tosini in the garden of the Chapel of Madonna di Loreto.