Abbazia San Galgano
The Eremo di Montesiepi and the imposing ruins of the Abbey of Saint Galgano in Valdimerse, is more than a religious-monumental complex important to the Commune of Chiusdino and of the local ecumenical community, it's one of the most important examples of the Romanesque and Gothic-Cistercense architecture in Italy.
Well conserved, the Eremo di Montesiepi guards the skeleton of the Abbey: solitary and silent, rising at fascinating angles from the earth and itself. The Eremo rises on the top of the knoll where the young Chiusdinese knight Galgano di Guidotto rose to ecumenical fame in December 1180 and where he died the successive year.
The Eremo was completed in 1185, the year of the canonization of Saint Galgano by Pope Lucio III. It was built as a mausoleum to guard the tomb of the Saint and as precious guard to the rock with the sword. In the nave is in fact the sword of Saint Galgano, testimony to the dark ages and of the conversion (to Sainthood?) of the young Chiusdinese man. The Eremo di Montesiepi flows from one nave to the central Rotunda, only interrupted by one small apse. The nave is sormontata from a dared semispherical cupola that, formed from concentric rings, creates the lllusion of the infinite. Worthy of note are frescoes of Ambrogio Lorenzetti, which can be seen in the small oratory adjacent to the Rotunda.
During the last decade of XII the century and the first years of the successive century, the monastic community that had grown up around the knight-hermit joined to the Cistercense Order, a lot had grown that sit rovò in the circumstance to transfer the own center in new and a more wide one cenobio, from the high of the hill was necessary to come down in the panorama below.
The imposing work was begun in 1218, and finished in the 1288. Known as the Abbey of Saint Galgano in Valdimerse it constitutes one of the more interesting examples of Gothic-Cistercense style and one of the more important doors that they concurred with the gotica art its income in Italy.
The Abbey was in splendor during the XIII and XIV centuries but, by the end of the XV century had slowly and inexorably decayed. The loss culminated in 1781 with the collapse of the roof of the Abbey's church, in 1786 with the ruin of the bell tower, in 1789 with the ecclesiastical retirement.
The Abbey complex continued to be celebrated as the church "without roof" and from a poderoso building was built along the strong and graceful arm of the transetto and now constitutes what remains of the Abbey. In this building they housed the Sacristy, the archives, the room to capitolare, the parlor and the scriptorium and, to the far side, the dormitory and the nail head. Gannet skillful side of the abbaziale church extended the chiostro, completely scomparso.
For its great historical and artistic importance, the Abbey of Saint Galgano greatly deserves it's place in history, favorite from the incuria of the men. The grand majesty of the ruins of the monumental Abbey; Hush the solemn one in which the gigantic remainders they are left they same; the sword in the rock knows to meraviglaire the visitor, to speak to its mind, to provoke in its heart an intimate communion and in its intelletto fantasiose images.
Chiusdino /////// Siena