Santuario di Maria SS del Monte

Another church situated in the square and built in XVIII century, with a polygonal dome and greek cross insides, with some important paintings and the main one that is the protagonist of the church.

The sanctuary closes the south-west side of the square and rises up in a space obtained from the demolition of another previous church of XV century. The building was planned by the architect Augustoni and it was opened in 1780. The face of the church is developed in two floors divided by a jutting beam. The front door is framed by four pillers on which rests an architrave. The bell tower echoes the design of the face. The interior is on a Greek Cross plan, the dome gives harmony and light. In the beginning there were twelve doors, which symbolised the 12 apostles, but later changes modified the original project. Behind the high altar is a painting by Lorenzo d’Alessandro covered by flying golden angels. In the painting over the right altar “San Pietro battezza il Centurione” (oil on canvas 120x180cm) the scene represents a room with many subjects highlighted by a game of lights coming from the window, and the main character is the Holy Spirit. On the left-altar is a wooden crucifix from the XVII century. According to legend it was gifted to the confraternity around the year 1666 by a pilgrim. Hung on the walls we can see 10 canvas representing scenes from the life of the Virgin, and 4 canvas representing 4 different Saints.
All the complex was inspired by the Umbrian culture on renaissance models, and it is considered of a certain high level. In the big canvas the ability to paint crowded scenes full of details can be clearly appreciated, whereas in the smaller ones it is more typical to use fresh and blended brushstrokes. Another peculiarity: in the sacristy is a huge closet from the XVIII century filled by all the gifts for the confraternity accumulated over the years.
The painting “Madonna del Monte” was commissioned by Francesco Piani and executed in 1491. On the painting is a long bandage with written “Sub Ergo Maria Confraternitate sue idem esse tego”. The words do not give us a real sense but it was probably a way to evoke protection. On the golden bottom is the Virgin who with her right arm holds up her son; a white veil frames the oval face of the Virgin. The woman is covered by a turquoise cloak, and her dress is red, while her son’s is yellow as well as his hair, and below them we can see 4 groups of Saints with 4 Saints in each group. We can recognise Saint Peter, Saint John the Baptist, Saint Dominic and Saint Roque. In front of the Virgin’s knees are two big boards sustained by Saint Francis, Saint Anthony of Padua, Saint Martin, Saint Gregory and other gentlemen from that period. On the board from the left is painted the Caldarola of that year, surrounded by walls, a closed box with “conserva” written on it and a mug full of coins. On the other board we can see a few monks and nuns on their knees, a box with the same word as the other and another one with the words “Mons Virginis”. All the scene sums up the work of the committant who was dreaming of the spiritual and material wellness of the town. The painting was crowned in 1814 by Pius VII.


Nome della tabella
Address Piazza Vittorio Emanuele
Construction (around) 1780

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