Sanctuary of St. Ann of Montrigone

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The Sanctuary of St. Ann must be considered part of the system of pre-Alpine Sacri Monti, which characterised the religious spirit of Piedmont and Lombardy especially in the 16th and 17th centuries.

The Sacro Monte of the Sanctuary of St. Ann of Montrigone is a religious architectural complex located in the town of Borgosesia, on the hill of Mount Rigone, framed by the mighty Mount Fenera in the background. The Montrigone high ground, which is now part of Borgosesia’s territory, was once known as Mount Rigone. A castle of the Counts of Biandrate stood there in the 14th century. It was later destroyed by a people’s revolt against the feudal lords.

Walking up the slope through the pines to the Sanctuary, you will encounter the 13 shrines with the Stations of the Cross painted by Lorenzo Peracino and built by 1763. The church is at the top of the hill. The inside features six chapels, each dedicated to an episode from the Life of the Blessed Virgin, and populated by some 150 polychrome terracotta statues. The chapels are then joined, as in a sort of chapel of Paradise, by the decoration of the dome with the Assumption of Mary.

The Sanctuary is supposed to have been built around 1648 as the fulfilment of a vow made to the Blessed Virgin who is said to have graced the citizens during a plague epidemic that spread throughout Europe and reached Valsesia as well. The construction seems to have been strongly driven by the organisational and financial commitment of Gian Battista Daij known as ‘Paniga’, a miller from the village. He is portrayed on the façade of the church.



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