"San Vivaldo" San Vivaldo by grimbolero
San Vivaldo Travel Guide: 0 reviews and 4 photos
San Vivaldo, a small village north west of Sienna in the Montaione district of Florence, also boasts one of the more curious religious sites of Tuscany.
A monastery was started here in the 14th century to commemorate an old Franciscan hermit, Vivaldo Stricchi who died on the site. It was extended in the ealry part of the 16th century by the Franciscans. Many tiny chapels were added, scattered through the woods, placed in geographical superposition with the pilgrimage sites of Jerusalem. The chapels represented major points in the life of Jesus andwere decorated with story-telling paintings.
During the 16th and 17th centuries, when Turks ruled the Holy Land and passage there for the devout and poor Christians of the area was denied, the design of San Vivaldo by Brother Tommaso di Firenze was recognised by the Pope as a valid alternative pilgrimage.
Now the site is quiet, managed by two Friars who can be seen tending the gardens. There is also a resturant with a good reputation, next to the church.
Of the 25 original, and occasional replacements made over the centuries, only 18 of the chapels remain.
All are maintained, and renovated in the 1970's. To understand them, it is best to visit the exhibition in the old hayloft at the rear of the monastery, next to which is a large map showing the correspondance between the chapels and the sites of Jerusalem.
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