Friday, October 26, 2018

A Northern Italian Romanesque Monastery

The Italian town of Capo di Ponte, in the province of Bergamo in Lombardy, is the home of a very ancient monastery dedicated to the Savior (San Salvatore), founded as a daughter house of the French Abbey of Marmoutier near Tours in the days of Charlemagne, soon after he was crowned King of the Lombards in 774. By the end of the 11th century, it had become a dependency of the Cluniac monastery of San Paolo d’Argon near Bergamo, but it was apparently abandoned before the end of the 13th century; of the original monastic complex, today there remains only the church. The irregular stonework seen in the second photo is typical of Romanesque architecture in Burgundy, where Cluny is located. The capitals of the church’s massive columns still preserve their very elaborate, classically Romanesque carvings, but there are only the barest traces of fresco on the walls. Thanks to Mr Francesco Sala for his permission to share these photos.

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