avour, with its thousand-year history and environmental peculiarities, can to all intents and purposes be considered an ’open-air museum’. The Abbey of Santa Maria and the Rocca are its main components and have been an integral part of Piedmont’s protected areas since 1980.

The foundation of the Abbey dedicated to Santa Maria dates back to 1307, at the behest of the Bishop of Turin Landolfo, built on the same site at the foot of the Rocca where the Forum Vibii Caburrum stood.

Governed by over forty abbots, mainly Benedictines, the Abbey lived for centuries in glory, also contributing to the growth and development of the urban agglomeration of Cavour. On the threshold of the 14th century, a slow decline began, culminating with its destruction by the French of Lesdiguieres in 1592. The reconstruction begun in the 18th century followed Baroque canons, with the insertion of stuccoes and decorations almost completely lost, and entailed a considerable reduction of the building compared to the original: in fact, the church was originally divided into three naves and also included the present-day portico.

After decades of neglect, the Abbey currently represents a splendid testimony to the artistic and functional recovery of a building that is a fundamental part of Cavour’s historical and monumental heritage and is distinguished by the presence in the crypt of the church of the oldest preserved altar in the Piedmontese panorama.

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From 02/03/2024 to 31/12/2024

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