The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

Pianifica, racconta, condividi

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  CREA IL TUO ITINERARIO

90 km
26 h
Medium
16 stages
3

Scenic route of naturalistic, historical and cultural interest, to cover in several days.

According to an ancient legend, Charlemagne conquered Valle Camonica going through it with a valiant army, defeating the local pagan lords and forcing them to embrace the Christian faith, celebrating their own victories by the erection of a series of churches to which the bishops and the Pope attributed a large dowry of indulgences. The legend says that the Frank army, coming from Bergamo, allegedly came to Lovere where, meeting and defeating on Mt. Cala the Jewish Alloro, had a church built in honour of St. Giovanni. According to some versions, from here he left and arrived to Pian Camuno, where maybe the daughter of the duke of Lovere was residing. To him she gave the whole valley, and as she became a “monaca” (nun), the Valley took the name Ca Monica. Later, he went toward Valgrigna, forcing the surrender of the castle lords of Esine, Cividate Camuno and Berzo Inferiore, where he had more churches built respectively to the Holy Trinity, to St. Stefano and to St. Lorenzo, to which he added that of St. Pietro in Such in Bienno. Arrived in Capo di Ponte, he founded the church of St. Salvatore, then proceeded northbound and, above a hillock, he consecrated the church of St. Clemente (maybe
in Edolo). When he arrived in Monno, he had a clash with an army of Jewish and pagans, whom he defeated after a bloody battle on the Mortirolo, deciding to have a church erected to St. Brizio and, a little later, near Davena of Vezza d’Oglio, the one dedicated to the saints Michele and Giorgio. Entering the ancient territory of Dalegno, in upper Valle Camonica, he founded two more churches: St. Alessandro, at the foot of Vione in
the Temù territory, and the Holy Trinity in Ponte di Legno.

start /stop : Lovere - Tonale Pass (about 90 km, 26 h)
Trail mark: VV Trail number: 691 – 191


Suggested STOPS:

BOARIO TERME m. 230 m.a.s.l.
CAPO DI PONTE m. 375 m.a.s.l. (31 km, 9,30 h)

CAPO DI PONTE m. 375
EDOLO m. 699 m.a.s.l. (29 km, 8,30 h)

EDOLO m. 699
TONALE PASS m. 1.883 m.a.s.l. (31 km, 9,30 h)

 


www.vallecamonicacultura.it/carlomagno/

Bergamo: Chiese di Bergamo - La leggenda di Carlo Magno nel cuore delle Alpi

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I racconti del ciclo carolingio ricordano alcune chiese di Bergamo : - L'antica cattedrale, secondo la tradizione di epoca paleocristiana, citata sin dal 774,...

I racconti del ciclo carolingio ricordano alcune chiese di Bergamo:

- L'antica cattedrale, secondo la tradizione di epoca paleocristiana, citata sin dal 774, che fu distrutta per la costruzione delle mura venete nel 1561. Il suo nome rimase alla porta Sant'Alessandro delle nuove mura e vicino al luogo in cui sorgeva venne eretta una colonna ancor'oggi esistente.
- San Matteo (nell'attuale via Seminarino), San Pietro (situata davanti alla cattedrale distrutta e pure essa demolita), San Salvatore (sul colle presso il palazzo vescovile, con resti anche romani), San Michele del Pozzo Bianco (di origine altomedioevale e con opere dal XIII secolo ad oggi), Sant'Andrea (in via Porta Dipinta), Sant'Alessandro alla Morla (oggi dei Padri Cappuccini), San Giovanni in Arena (distrutta).

Lovere: Chiesa di San Giovanni in Cala - La leggenda di Carlo Magno nel cuore delle Alpi

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La chiesa di San Giovanni in Cala sorge sulla sommità del monte che sovrasta Lovere, in una posizione estremamente panoramica sfruttata in passato come...

La chiesa di San Giovanni in Cala sorge sulla sommità del monte che sovrasta Lovere, in una posizione estremamente panoramica sfruttata in passato come postazione militarmente strategica affacciata sul lago di Iseo e sulla bassa Valle Camonica, sulla Val Cavallina e sulla Val Borlezza.
La presenza di una fortezza, evocata nella leggenda, è testimoniata da documenti e da resti materiali che non consentono tuttavia una sua datazione all'VIII secolo.

IAT Alto Sebino

Skype: Ufficio IAT Alto Sebino Facebook: Ufficio Turistico Alto Sebino - Alto...

Piancamuno - La leggenda di Carlo Magno nel cuore delle Alpi

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Secondo la leggenda il signore del castello di San Giovanni in Cala, per compiacere Carlo Magno, inviò al potente duca di Monno un'ambasciata per convincerlo a...

Secondo la leggenda il signore del castello di San Giovanni in Cala, per compiacere Carlo Magno, inviò al potente duca di Monno un'ambasciata per convincerlo a non opporsi all'avanzata dell'esercito franco. Padre Gregorio Brunelli riporta alcune opinioni "circa la qualità del soggetto incaricato": un sacerdote amico, una monaca, o la figlia stessa del duca di Lovere, poi fattasi monaca a Brescia. Alla donzella re Carlo, per gratitudine, avrebbe donato la Valle, che da lei avrebbe assunto il nome di Ca Monica, e il giuspatronato "della Chiesa Parocchiale di Piano da lei eretta".

Gorzone: Castello Federici - La leggenda di Carlo Magno nel cuore delle Alpi

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Fra le importanti testimonianze del ricco patrimonio del Museo della Città in Santa Giulia a Brescia si segnalano i sei riquadri affrescati che decoravano casa...

Fra le importanti testimonianze del ricco patrimonio del Museo della Città in Santa Giulia a Brescia si segnalano i sei riquadri affrescati che decoravano casa Caffi-Vezzoli, un tempo pertinenza del medioevale castello dei Federici a Gorzone.
Nei Curiosj Trattenimenti, pubblicati alla fine del Seicento da padre Gregorio Brunelli, il ciclo viene menzionato per la prima volta e collegato al tema della leggenda di Carlo Magno e della giovane di nome Monica, fattasi poi monaca nel convento di Santa Giulia di Brescia. Le scene figurate si sviluppano con una certa varietà compositiva, benchè ormai scarsamente leggibili a causa degli irrimediabili danni patiti dalla pellicola pittorica, tanto che le indagini più recenti sembrano escludere riferimenti precisi alla figura e alle imprese del sacro romano imperatore.

Gorzone Castle

Home of the powerful Federici family, the Gorzone castle, placed on a sheer...

Cividate Camuno - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps Church of St. Stefano Cividate Camuno In 774, Charlemagne defeated the Longobards in Italy, becoming the...

The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps Church of St. Stefano Cividate Camuno
In 774, Charlemagne defeated the Longobards in Italy, becoming the most powerful king of Europe. In the same year, he donated Valle Camonica to the monks of St. Martin of Tours in France.
Starting from the 15th century, some manuscripts report the legendary journey made by Charlemagne through the Alps, with the aim of conquering and converting the mountain people not yet Christianized.
«And Charlemagne arrived at the port of Blasia where there was a lord of a castle called the Jewish who didn’t want to believe in the catholic faith: so Charles fought against him and defeated him. In that place he had a church built dedicated to St. Stefano»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)
The legend tells that Charlemagne, after going up along Valle Camonica with his army, arrived at the mysterious «Blasia port or bridge» and here, having defeated the local lord of the castle, had a church erected, dedicated to St. Stefano.
The Blasia area has been identified with Cividate Camuno, where there is an ancient church dedicated to St. Stefano, built right between the ancient quarter of the Roman Theatre and Amphitheatre and the one where the Forum must have been.
Nestled on top of a crag and reachable by a stairway built in the 18th century, the building could once be reached from the northern slope by a path that linked it directly to the bridge over the Oglio River.
Observing the church one can clearly notice the interventions that brought about the present-day structure: from the early medieval foundations, to the Romanesque apse from the 12th-13th century, to the extension works and the opening of doors and windows in the 18th century. The bell tower itself, subjected to several restorations, obtained its present shape only in the 18th century, with the addition of an onion-shaped steeple on the top. Inside the church, below a gridded floor, one can see the remains of ancient wall structures which belong to the first cult place.
WHAT TO SEE
The Romanesque apse, the frescoed presbytery, the ancient structures below the gridded floor.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
The archaeological Park of the Roman Theatre and Amphitheatre; the Archaeological National Museum of Valle Camonica, the Palace area, the medieval tower, Villa Malaguzzi, the parish church.
 

ESINE Church of the Holy Trinity - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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«And Charles came to Oriola Valley and arrived at a castle which was called Iesen, in which resided a Jewish lord called Ercole, whom Charles killed, because...

«And Charles came to Oriola Valley and arrived at a castle which was called Iesen, in which resided a Jewish lord called Ercole, whom Charles killed, because he didn’t want to be converted to the Christian faith, and there he had a church built in honour of the Holy Trinity»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)

Following the legend, Charlemagne, once entered in Valle Camonica (Vallem Oriola, probably Valley of the Oglio River), arrived at Isen (Iesen), where there was a Jewish lord named Ercole. After defeating him, Charles ordered the construction of a church on the hilltop, dedicated to the Holy Trinity.
The building, documented at least since 1154, probably has a much more ancient history. Some documents now discarded by the Parish Archives had the foundation of the church date back to 771, when however Charlemagne had not yet arrived in Italy and Valle Camonica was still subjugated to the Longobard reign.
The current shape of the church reflects Romanesque standards, also remarkably remodeled in the 16th century, when the structure’s front was raised, taking up today’s form similar to a turret.
The interior displays numerous paintings from the early Venetian period (15th-16th centuries), among which we must point out the important chapel of St. Rocco, positioned on the northern side, containing frescoes by the artist Giovanni Pietro da Cemmo.
Near the building there are some remains of an ancient fortification dating to the 12th-13th century, many centuries later than the age of the Charlemagne legend.
WHAT TO SEE
The chapel of St. Rocco, the presbytery, the turret-like face.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
The church of Santa Maria Assunta (Our Lady of the Assumption),
the San Paolo (St. Paul) parish, the Federici tower, Barberino Park.

Esine

Il comune di Esine si trova posizionato alla fine della Valgrigna Da vedere:...

BERZO INFERIORE Church of St. Lorenzo - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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««And Charlemagne came to a land called Bercium: there was acastle, called ancient castle. The lord of that stronghold was acertain Pagan Count who was...

««And Charlemagne came to a land called Bercium: there was acastle, called ancient castle. The lord of that stronghold was acertain Pagan Count who was converted to the Christian faith»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)

The archaeological data make it possible to date the building of the St. Lorenzo church to the 12th century, even though its present shape is the result of a 15th-century extension work. At first it was the ancient parish of the community, but later it was substituted by the more useful Santa Maria church, located at the foot of the hill. A few elements are left reminding of the great St. Cristofo that decorated the external face, while inside some valuable paintings of the 15th-16th centuries are preserved. Among the decorations the most important ones are in the presbytery, dedicated to St. Lorenzo’s life, and in the St. Rocco and Sebastiano chapel, fully frescoed by Giovanni Pietro da Cemmo. Among the figures represented St. Glisente appears more times, as he was particularly worshipped in this part of the Valley: on the external south face, following the tradition, there is a tomb that allegedly contains the
clothes of this Saint. The legend tells that Glisente was a soldier in the Charlemagne army, together with the brother Fermo and the sister Cristina, but, tired of the horrors of war, they decided to retreat in hermitage on some mountains of Valle Camonica: Glisente above Esine, Fermo above Borno and Cristina above Lozio. On the hilltop, on a panoramic site over Valgrigna, is found the small chapel of St. Michele, ancient witness of a broad stronghold that girded this summit area between the 12th and the 13th century.
WHAT TO SEE
The chapel of St. Rocco and Sebastiano, the presbytery.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
The church of Santa Maria Nascente, the church of St. Michele, the church of St. Glisente and the House Museum of Beato Innocenzo.

Berzo Inferiore

Il paese di Berzo Inferiore si trova nella parte inferiore della Valgrigna,...

BIENNO Church of St. Pietro in Vincoli - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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«And Charles went up a hillock, together with bishop Trupino, who brought a banner; planted the flag on the hilltop, Charles arranged to have a church built in...

«And Charles went up a hillock, together with bishop Trupino,  who brought a banner; planted the flag on the hilltop, Charles arranged to have a church built in honour of St. Pietro Zucco»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)

The church of St. Pietro in Vincoli is located on the old path that linked Bienno to Breno, probably the site of an ancient hospice for travellers and surely built over a pre-existing structure, possibly a tower, which is still noticeable in the waste material visible among the walls. To the name of the building is often added the term Zucco, or Süch in dialect, whose meaning is still uncertain. Pastoral visits of the 16th and 17th centuries attest to its poor conditions, so much so that it was repaired in the course of the  18th century. The arcade is already documented in 1578, while in 1692 it was pointed out that “the images painted on the wall inside the choir must be painted again or be completely erased”. Today there are no traces of the ancient paintings and also the leather frontal that decorated the altar has been moved to the town hall. Father Gregorio of Valcamonica (1698) states that in the church
there was a chart which certified the unquestionable truths of all the indulgences granted by the bishops following Charlemagne and the foundation of the selfsame building. The custody of the church was entrusted to the hermits who resided on the Maddalena hill, whereas today the structure is used
for artistic and cultural activities.
WHAT TO SEE
The arcade, the walls with waste material.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
Valle dei Magli (Valley of the Hammers) with the etnographic Museum of iron, arts and popular traditions, the Smithy Recreation Centre and the Smithy Laboratory; the medieval town of Bienno, with the towers, the churches and the palaces, the House of the Artists, the Watermill Museum; the Maddalena hill with the homonymous sanctuary and the Monument to Christ the King.

Bienno

Bienno (Bién in dialetto camuno) è un comune italiano di 3 958 abitanti, della...

Breno: il castello - La leggenda di Carlo Magno nel cuore delle Alpi

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Nella versione della leggenda narrata da padre Gregorio Brunelli, il castello di Breno "era provvisto di coraggio e di gente" poiché alle milizie del signore...

Nella versione della leggenda narrata da padre Gregorio Brunelli, il castello di Breno "era provvisto di coraggio e di gente" poiché alle milizie del signore locale si erano aggiunti i longobardi fuggiti e sconfitti, intenzionati a resistere alle armate franche.
Il castello, "fortissimo, e quasi insuperabile per la natura del sito inaccessibile", conserva ancor oggi l'aspetto incombente e inespugnabile, dominando uno sperone roccioso a strapiombo sull'abitato di Breno.
La sua struttura è il risultato di una lunga storia di revisioni costruttive e funzionali, che trasformarono l'insediamento fortificato medievale, formato da palazzi e torri recintati, in una roccaforte militare sede, sotto il dominio veneto, della guarnigione locale.

Breno Castle

The Breno castle rises on a hill overlooking the town: the building was erected...

CAPO DI PONTE Church of St. Salvatore - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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«Then Charlemagne arrived at a place called Cemmo: there he had a church built in honour of St. Salvatore» (Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice,...

«Then Charlemagne arrived at a place called Cemmo: there he had a church built in honour of St. Salvatore»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)

The ancient town of Cemmo, in the municipality of Capo di Ponte, was once the site of the parish district headed by the church of St. Siro. On the opposite side of the Oglio river there was an ancient Cluniac monastery of which today only the church of St. Salvatore remains.
This complex structure is known to exist since 1095, when it was cited in a papal bull by Pope Urban II addressed to the abbot Ugo from Cluny. At that time the monastery of Capo di Ponte, called de Valle Camonica or de Teziis, was headed by the priorate of San Paolo d’Argon near Bergamo.
The convent, while keeping some benefits, was already in decline about the end of the 13th century. Its goods were collected in 1538 by the property of the Duomo of Brescia, it gradually lost importance all the way to the Napoleonic reforms of the early 19th century: the whole structure was expropriated by the domain and later sold to private owners.
After barely avoiding transformation into a spinning factory, the remaining buildings of the ex monastery were purchased in 1879 by the learned man Fortunato Rizzi (1880-1965) who worked for their restoration.
The church of St. Salvatore is arranged in three naves ending each in an elegant apse, with the presbytery surmounted by an octagonal dome cladding with eight twin lancet windows. Inside the structure there are still some ancient wall paintings, beside powerful pillars ending with capitals decorated with human figures, animals and mythological elements.
WHAT TO SEE
The garden, the Roman epigraph of gladiator Rutumanna, the apses.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
The three Rock Art Parks - UNESCO site n. 94, the National Museum of Prehistory of Valle Camonica, the parish of St. Siro, the historic

Parish of St. Siro

The first parish church of the Valley, St. Siro dates back to the 6th-7th...

EDOLO Church of St. Clemente - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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«And then Charles went up a hillock and there he had a church built in honour of St. Clemente» (Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum,...

«And then Charles went up a hillock and there he had a church built in honour of St. Clemente»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)

The legend goes that Charlemagne, after leaving Cemmo, headed for upper Valle Camonica, and he paused on a hillock to found a church dedicated to St. Clemente. It is identified by scholars with the little homonymous oratory on the Edolo slope, although Father Gregorio in 1698 thought it was instead the church of St. Clemente located above Vezza d’Oglio.  In the 18th century rumour spread, in particular due to the writings by Gianmaria Biemmi and Stefano Togni Marrotta, that in Longobard times, around 660, there was in this site a pagan temple dedicated to Saturn. As the Camunians didn’t stop worshipping him, king Ariberto ordered to destroy it. The name Idulo (Idol) remained anyway linked to the locality: Edolo, so much so that the ancient town coat of arms showed an idol placed on top of a pillar. The popular tradition added another version, according to which in the area where St. Clemente stands today a golden calf was also worshipped, and it was then buried and still now it is hidden underground. Later chronicles recall that in the 15th century near the church a fortress was built and it was entrusted to Giacomino Oldofredi from Iseo, Capitan of Valtellina during the clashes between Milan
and Venice. Remains of this stronghold are still evident in the walls that surround the hill of St. Clemente.
WHAT TO SEE
The St. Clemente fresco in the presbytery, the remains of the ancient wall structures.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
The church of St. Giovanni Battista (John the Baptist), the church of St. Fabiano and Sebastiano, the parish of Santa Maria Nascente, Casa Zuelli, anient home of the Federici family, the historical centre.
 

Edolo

« Edolo dunque è terra grande, situata al piano, tutta borgata, ornata di...

MONNO E IL MORTIROLO Church of St. Brizio - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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«And Charlemagne went up a mountain: there the Christians fought a great battle against Jews and pagans. Many believers died, but more unbelievers also died...

«And Charlemagne went up a mountain: there the Christians fought a great battle against Jews and pagans. Many believers died, but more unbelievers also died. And Charles named that place Mortarolo […] And farther on Charles came to a land called Amon where he had a church built in honour of St. Brizio»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)

The origin of the name Mortirolo is to be attributed, according to the legend, to the numerous dead caused by the battle that was fought in that place between Charlemagne’s Christian troops and the opposing formations of Jews and pagans. The church of St. Brizio is located at the foot of the town of
Monno (Amon) along a country road heading towards Edolo. Formerly it was Monno’s parish, whose rectors are already cited since 1284; later it was substituted by the church of St. Pietro and Paolo. The structure was rebuilt in 1470 and remodeled in 1657, as statedin the tombstone walled up outside the northern wall. In this same inscription are remembered also the numerous indulgences granted to the church by the bishops following Charlemagne. In 1580, during Carlo Borromeo’s visit, the structure was described as «remote» from the town and in poor conditions. The inside of the church is decorated with paintings from the 18th century, while the presbytery contains a sumptuous wooden altar piece made by Giovanni Battista Zotti. The sanctuary was very rich of votive offerings, which however were burned after the pastoral visit of Brescia bishop, monsignor Giacinto Tredici.
WHAT TO SEE
The epigraph in memory of Charlemagne, the interior wooden arcade placed in the counter-front.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
The parish of St. Pietro and Paolo, the church of St. Sebastiano and Fabiano, the little church of St. Giacomo; the Mortirolo Pass, one of the great climbs of the Tour of Italy.

Monno

Monno sorge lungo la strada che dalla Valle Camonica sale al Passo del...

Vezza d'Oglio: Church of St. Michele and Giorgio - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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«And then Charles went to a land called Adavena: and there he had a church built in honour of the Saints Michele and Giorgio» (Translation from the manuscript...

«And then Charles went to a land called Adavena: and there he had a church built in honour of the Saints Michele and Giorgio»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)

The legend tells that Charlemagne, arrived near Vezza d’Oglio, passed by Davena (Adavena), where he decided to found a new church and to consecrate it to the cult of the Saints Michele and Giorgio. The origins of this church remain uncertain, but it has a strong
link with Charlemagne’s legend, thanks to the presence, inside the structure, of a painted medallion reminiscent of the indulgences granted by the passage of the king of the Franks. The Camunian writer Father Gregorio of Valcamonica, born in Cané, in 1698 maintained that Charlemagne came also to Davena, where at that time there was a remarkable stronghold, but, since nobody resisted him, he with his usual generous pity contributed for the church of St. Michele e Giorgio, and the bishops following the king left some very rich indulgences, as in other places. In 1567 the Brescia Bishop Domenico Bollani reported the little church restructured but not yet finished, while at the time of Carlo Borromeo’s visit in 1580 it was described as in poor shape, subordinated to the Vezza d’Oglio rector and the point of arrival of the third day of rogations. Beside the building, sheltered by a slate roof, there is the bell
tower datable to the 17th century. Inside, in the presbytery’s vault, there are frescoes datable to the 19th century.
WHAT TO SEE
The painting that recalls the indulgences granted by Charlemagne, the painting showing Davena among the patron Saints.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
The Federici tower and the church of St. Clemente; the quarry of white marble, dating back to Roman times (now closed); the handiwork from the Great War.

Vezza d'Oglio

Vezza d'Oglio è posto sulla riva destra del fiume Oglio, lungo la strada...

Vione Temù: Church of St. Alessandro - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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.«Following that he had a church built, dedicated to St. Alessandro» (Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505) The legend...

.«Following that he had a church built, dedicated to St. Alessandro»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)

The legend tells that Charlemagne, entering the territories of Dalegno, the ancient municipality which included Temù and Ponte di Legno, ordered to build the church of St. Alessandro. The time of its foundation is not known: even though the building could be of Romanesque origin, as can be seen from the bell tower datable to the 13th century, the present-day structure dates at least to the 16th century. The church, which rises on the road between Vione and Temù, is very simple and it presents a hut-like face decorated by a marble portal and two small windows. At the time of Carlo Borromeo’s pastoral visit in 1580 it was described as a «country oratory», subordinate to Villa Dalegno’s parish and the place of arrival of the third day of rogations. The church underwent a slow deterioration until the 1930s, during which period it was repaired, as testified by an inscription preserved in the interior: «in honour of Almighty God and St. Martyr Alessandro, the decaying sanctuary was restructured and embellished in memory of dr. Italo Tognali late Battista in the year 1939».
Popular tradition has it that St. Carlo Borromeo stopped by St. Alessandro: getting off his horse, he allegedly left the print of his foot carved on a rock. St. Carlo also is said to have reclaimed a fountain that was considered harmful in the area.
WHAT TO SEE
The remains of the Romanesque bell tower, the decorated ceiling.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
Temù: the Museum of Guerra Bianca (White War – w.w. I) on Mt. Adamello, the church of St. Bartolomeo.
Vione: the ethnographic Museum ‘l Zuf; the parish church of St. Remigio; the ancient medieval centre, with the remains of six tower-houses defending the Polagra castle; the ancient Venetian
sawmill; the parish churches of nearby towns; Dosso Bergino; the Tòr di Paga’ in Val Canè (2240 metres a.s.l.), with the ruins of ancient Longobard towers.
 

PONTE DI LEGNO Church of the Holy Trinity - The legend of Charlemagne in the heart of the alps

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«Reaching the head of the Valley he ordered to build a church in honour of the Holy Trinity» (Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum,...

«Reaching the head of the Valley he ordered to build a church in honour of the Holy Trinity»
(Translation from the manuscript kept in Venice, Correr Museum, year 1505)

After founding the church of St. Alessandro in Temù, according to the legend, Charlemagne decided on building the church of the Holy Trinity in Ponte di Legno. The origin of the structure is uncertain, but certainly more ancient than the baroque style that characterizes it today. The high battlemented bell tower in fact shows some architectural elements typical of at least the 16th century. During the pastoral visit of 1580, Carlo Borromeo suggested to widen the presbytery and the nave, as the structure was not capacious enough; he also asked that the presbytery was closed with a gate, which exceptionally, as the community was very poor, could have been built in wood and not in iron. The building was restored in 1685 and so it is described by Father Gregorio of Valcamonica, born in Cané (1698): «all stucco worked and decorated with paintings». In the early 20th century the access stairway to the parvis was created, employing waste material from some houses that were damaged by fire.  The only internal nave appears particularly luminous thanks to the ornament of the numerous 18th-century stuccos. At the end of the presbytery the high altar stands out in its magnificence. It is attributed to members of the Ramus family (Domenico, but maybe the father Giovan Battista) and turns out to be one of the best examples of wooden sculpture in upper Valle Camonica.
WHAT TO SEE
The wooden altars, the ex voto painted by the Scarsi family in the 17th century.
IN THE SURROUNDINGS
The chapel of the dead of Zoanno; the church of St. Apollonio, near Pezzo; the castle of Castelpoggio in the Poia area, at the western entrance of Ponte di Legno.

Ponte di Legno

Ponte di Legno (Pònt Dalègn in dialetto camuno) è un comune italiano di 1.746...

Val di Scalve - La leggenda di Carlo Magno nel cuore delle Alpi

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L'episodio è narrato soltanto nella colorita versione di padre Gregorio Brunelli. Il signore di Breno, Cornelio Alano, fugge nottetempo dal castello assediato...

L'episodio è narrato soltanto nella colorita versione di padre Gregorio Brunelli. Il signore di Breno, Cornelio Alano, fugge nottetempo dal castello assediato. Di buon passo "con grandissima diligenza, e con secretezza per l'amico silentio delle stelle" risale la Val di Scalve attraversando Angolo e Gorzone; quindi "per strade erte, e malagevoli" raggiunge Colere e la Presolana. Carlo Magno lo rincorre, indirizzato dagli abitanti di un villaggio posto accanto a un ponte di pietra dai quali è "meglio, e più interamente informato del viaggio" del nemico e del luogo dove era nascosto.
Lo trova "tutt'intrepido, e ben in arme, che squadronate le sue genti era disposto per combattere, e difendersi" e soltanto grazie al Cielo, dopo "fiera, e atroce battaglia, dove molti d'ambo le parti morirono", lo sconfigge. Secondo una delle fantasiose etimologie di padre Gregorio, da tale episodio "in memoria d'essere ivi stato preso Cornelio Alano" deriverebbe il nome Presolana.
Riscendendo Carlo Magno si sofferma "a rimirare la Valle" accanto al fiume Decio "dove anco al presente si veggono alcune Torri sopra d'un gran scoglio erette"; lo raggiunge il signore della Valle che, temendo la stessa sorte dell'Alano, spontaneamente si sottomette e si converte.
Per celebrare la vittoria Carlo Magno fonda la chiesa di Santa Maria Maddalena di Dezzo.