The Monastic Mirror


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Norcia continued

Norcia is one of the few cities of Umbria whose ancient city walls are still totally preserved.  One part is from the time of the Romans, another part from the Middle Ages, and a part was reconstructed around 1800. 

One of the two large Porta's to enter the city with the insignia of a lion.

Cities built these walls as a means of protection during addition, they built on top of the mountain.  The term fortified city takes on a new meaning.

The Piazza or the market place is on the same site as it was in the time of the Romans.  The statue of St. Benedict was placed in the square at the time of the 1400th anniversary (1880).  From this focal point, you can make your way down the streets of shops to the Catellina.  This is the site of an ancient Temple of Fortuna.  It was built in the 16th century as a fortress and a palace.  It now house the museum 

This statue of Saint Benedict is probably the most notable one for everyone.  It is one many postcards, in books and overseas the whole town.

The Church of St. Benedict.  Tradition says that here stood the house where Benedict and Scholastica were born.  To the right and left of the portal are statues of the Saints. 

The church and abbey were suppressed in 1810 and in 2000 a new community of Benedictine monks came to Norcia per the request of then Abbot Primate Marcel Rooney.  The founding prior Father Cassian is from St. Mienrad's Archabbey  and started out with three and now have 13.  The monks are currently trying to restore much of the fresco's, crypt and Basicalla that was largely left unattended for so many years. 

Must go to class so I will post some more pictures later...have a great day...

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