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Church of St. Eusebius

Church of St. Eusebius

The vicinity of Ronciglione to Lake Vico and the Comini hills has made the town a popular place for summer residents. The town consists of a mediaeval central section, the original "borgo", which is flanked by wider roads and aristocratic dwellings built from the 1500s to the 1700s. The Rovere Castle, known as the "Torrioni" (the Towers) was erected in the late Middle Ages to serve as part of the town defences. The castle used to belong to the Vico Prefects and later passed into the ownership of the Anguillara, the Della Rovere and, finally, the Farnese families. There is a very interesting sculpture work: the Fountain of the Unicorns (1581) which some believe to be the work of Vignola and others attribute to Antonio Gentili of Faenza. Ronciglione also boasts a very old church which dates back to the 11-12th centuries: Santa Maria della Provvidenza. The inside of the church, which has a single nave, includes a painting of Christ surrounded by angels and cherubs and giving His blessing, a work belonging to 1400. The main town church is baroque and built after a plan by Pietro da Cortona. It contains a number of interesting artistic works, most notably a triptych of St Salvador by Gabriele di Francesco of Viterbo (second half of 15th century). The "borgo" area also contains the remains of the Church of St Andrew whose columns, capitals and belfry are still standing. The old church was built in 1463 by Galasso of Como. Out in the countryside, three kilometres beyond the mediaeval buildings huddled on the tufa-rock of the town, is the church of St Eusebius, one of the most important early Christian monuments in the whole area. Built in the 7-8th centuries by Basilian monks who had fled Palestine, the church contains graffiti left behind by pilgrims in tangible proof of their devotion. Nearby, lie the ruins of the old cenoby (monastic house) and the belfry. Another significant monument is the Porta Romana gateway designed by Vignola. A particularly important festivity for tourists is the Carnival during which a riderless horserace takes place through the streets of the town. Another important date is 25 August, the feat of St Bartholomew.

 

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