Hidden treasures

The Abbey of Santa Maria delle Carceri

Unknown places & works

The Abbey of Santa Maria delle Carceri

In the heart of the Euganean Hills, near the ancient city of Este, there is a religious complex of incredible charm: the Abbey of Santa Maria delle Carceri.

Founded in the 12th century as a hospice for pilgrims headed to Rome, it was enlarged from the 15th to the 17th century by the Camaldolese monks. It lay abandoned from 1690, when the Carminati family put it up for sale to finance the wars of the Republic of Venice against the Ottoman Empire, until the middle of the 20th century.

Today the whole complex can be visited and you can admire the entrance portico, dating back to the period of the Camaldolese monks; the portico, built by the Augustinians with a rectangular plan; the Foresteria, consisting of two floors; the ground floor, built by the Augustinians around 1200 and a first floor built instead by the Camaldolese.

Then there is the church, a medieval building remodeled by the Camaldolese in 1686, with the rectory palace next to it, where the superior father of the Augustinians lived. When the complex was turned into a farm, the building became the residence of the Carminati family.

Next to the rectory palace, there is an ancient tower, the only one left of the Romanesque cloister, now used as a Baptistery.

In addition to the Romanesque cloister built by the Augustinians, there is also a Renaissance cloister, built by the Camaldolese in the middle of the 16th century.

In the buildings adjacent to the cloisters, you can admire the Library with frescoes by the Scuola del Salviati (early '600s).

Don’t miss the opportunity to combine your holiday in the Veneto region with a visit to this little gem of art and spirituality!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

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