July 5, 2013

Church of “Sant’ Amanzio”

Chiesa-di-Sant-AmanzioAncient documents call this church “a rural one”. It is on the Via Francigena. The first information about it date back to 1630.

It seems it was built by the inhabitants of Canepina who dedicated it to the Virgin Mother of God and to Saint Amanzio, as written on the front of the church, inside a geometric decoration ( DEIPARAE VIRGINI ET AMANTIO M DICATUM). The saint is known for healing the sufferings of the sick people and for his miraculous powers in fighting snakes. Charities helped to maintain the church, but when it needed a complete restoration, the Chiatti family, who owned the land close to the church, took care of it . Afterwards all the Chiatti properties passed to the Rem Picci family, who did their best to restore and make the small church more attractive. In 1975 Matilde Rem Picci reproduced on a canvas the image of Saint Lucia, whose original portrait had been stolen. The painting, in an ancient frame, is on the altar. The church is a small, square plant temple, built according to the architecture of the late 1600. Inside it, above the altar, there is a tempera on canvas (1.30 by 0.80 metres) by Tommaso De Vivo 1849,representing Saint Amanzio while receiving the palm of martyrdom by the Christ Child, sat on his Mother’s knees. On the right side is a painting of the Madonna della Pace with the Christ Child and an olive branch; nearby in a small urn are the ashes of the engineer Giorgio Rem Picci who died in 1989. He is remembered by his family in a small tombstone. The bell, (that bears the date of 1102, but is considered to be an imitation made in the 19th century) has a small hole due to German fire: in fact it seems it was placed on the roof of the Rem Picci’s house during world war II. Now, for safety reasons, it is on the left side of the church, in an iron armour. On the same side there is a beautiful painting of the Neapolitan school, representing Saint Anna, Saint Gioacchino and the little Maria.

 

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S. Amazio