Trino and “il Bosco della Partecipanza” 1
Trino and “il Bosco della Partecipanza” 2

Trino and “il Bosco della Partecipanza”

In past centuries, Trino has been at the center of important political and military events several times and in the 17th century, under the Savoys, it was also elevated to the rank of Province. Despite being a small centre, it boasts a large number of religious buildings of some interest, testimony to the importance andwealth of Trino over the centuries. Don't miss a visit to the Romanesque San Michele in Insula, located outside the town of Trino, on a site still called Insula today, as it was surrounded by two branches of the Po. In Trino, among others, don't miss the Parish Church of San Bartolomeo and the church of Santa Caterina d'Alessandria. In Piazza Garibaldi there is the Palazzo Paleologo, built starting from 1152 by William the Elder of Monferrato. Between the beginning of the 14th century and the end of the 15th century, it was the seat of the Palaiologi court. The visit to Trino is completed by the small Irico Museum, created by Vittorio Viale, a true jewel full of treasures that allow us to reconstruct the ancient history of the region, inhabited since the Paleolithic. There are prehistoric, Roman and medieval artefacts and finds, as well as works of pictorial art, incunabula and "sixteenth century", rare editions of typographical works from the 16th century, art in which Trino distinguished himself in the world. The vast territory of Trino is home to the Partecipanza dei Boschi Natural Park, a rare Italian example of a plain forest and the only evidence of how the Po Valley looked before the reclamation works carried out by the Cistercians in order to make these lands cultivable. Since 1200, the forest has been used by those who were called Participants, who were such because they participated in the enjoyment of the wood produced by the forest. The only beneficiaries of a donation received from the owner of the territory of Trino at that time, as compensation to the families who had rendered particular services to the city, they could and still can today pass on their rights solely by succession. Since 1991, the Partecipanza forest has been a Natural Park, as well as an extraordinary example of conservation of a historical asset.

Trino is about 4 kilometers from Borgo Ramezzana.

Origins:  the first settlement was probably Celtic. From the 2nd century BC, Rigomagus (this is the original toponym, which in Celtic means "king's market") was the site of a Roman station of a certain importance, as it was strategically positioned at the crossroads between the military roads that linked the Civitas Taurini (Turin) with Ticinum (Pavia) and, later, Augusta Praetoria (Aosta) with Civitas Asta (Asti). Around the 15th century, the Cistercians introduced for the first time, in Trino and the adjacent territory, the cultivation of rice, which still today has a fundamental importance in the economy of the entire region. Among the illustrious people who characterized the life and history of this town, in this regard, Camillo Benso, Count of Cavour, should certainly be mentioned, who owned an agricultural company in Trino - the Leri estate, today the Leri Cavour hamlet. – where he loved to spend part of his time; let's not forget that this important historical figure, defined on several occasions as "the greatest Italian statesman", was also a municipal councilor of Trino, in the year 1859.

Among the sixteen churches in Trino, we highlight the most significant.

San Michele in Insula: it is a Romanesque church located outside the town of Trino, on a site still called Insula today, as it was surrounded by two branches of the Po. It can be hypothesized that the origins of this parish church date back to the early Middle Ages, and that it was built on a previous sacred building, a small wooden chapel. Despite multiple interventions, the church maintains the sober Romanesque style assumed in the 12th century. Its importance decreased when the town concentrated in the area where the thirteenth-century Parish Church of San Bartolomeo is located. From an artistic point of view, we remember some fragments of 12th century frescoes of great importance, located in the presbytery: a Crucifixion and Scenes from the life of Saint Michael are visible. Furthermore, the shape of the hair on the Crucifix preserved there is curious, the oldest in Trino.

Parish Church of San Bartolomeo: the Parish Church, dedicated to the patron saint of Trino, was built as a three-nave church at the beginning of the 13th century, when the use of the church of San Michele in Insula began to decline. The church was almost completely rebuilt in the years 1634-1642, as a single-nave building, with a Latin cross plan. The façade, characterized by a sober and classical style, is the result of the renovations that took place in 1839. Inside we can observe important works from both an artistic and historical point of view: we remember the fourteenth-century icon of the Madonna with child (called Madonna of San Luca) with still Byzantine features, which was donated to the church by the Paleologi; a triptych placed in the left transept dedicated to the Immaculate Conception, a work by Gerolamo Giovenone, dating back to 1516; a panel by Boniforte Oldoni the Younger, the Coronation of the Virgin and saints, from 1587, coming from the nearby church of San Pietro Martire; a canvas by Guglielmo Tabacchetti depicting the infant Jesus with Saint Joseph and the Madonna, significant as it is the only known work by the author; the canvas Presentation of Jesus at the Temple (1648), by Orsola Caccia; the canvas San Bartolomeo baptises the royals of Armenia, located in the choir, by the Casalese Pier Francesco Guala (1733-1734); finally, the 16th century wooden crucifix, located in the chapel of the B. V. of Lourdes.

Santa Caterina d'Alessandria: it is a church - also known as the church of San Domenico - with three naves with cross vaults and an austere Gothic bell tower; it is part of the complex of the former convent of the Dominican friars, which today houses the civic library and the municipal historical archive. The Gothic structure of the church was modified by a neoclassical facade and, inside, by the addition of chapels. One of them is dedicated to the blessed Maddalena Panatieri (1443-1503), who came here to pray, whose relics are venerated. A few steps from the church we can admire the evocative remains of the ancient fifteenth-century cloister, also belonging to the Dominican convent.

San Lorenzo: this church, also called "of the Confraternity of Angels", is a building characterized by baroque lines, with an eighteenth-century façade in exposed brick. Completed in 1749, it was reduced to a barn during the French Revolution; it was only in 1802 that it returned to its former splendor, with the transfer of the remains of the Blessed Arcangela Girlani from Trini, a Carmelite (1460-1495). In San Lorenzo we can observe a panel by Guala: Virgin with Saints Luigi Gonzaga and Antonio Abate.

San Giovanni Battista: the church dates back to the 17th century and offers us a beautiful exposed brick side. In 1672 it was renovated due to the damage suffered during the demolition of the city walls. In the past it was the property of the oldest Confraternity attested in Trino, that of the Disciplinants of Santa Caterina who, to appease divine wrath, used to flagellate themselves in public.

San Pietro Martire: recently reopened by members of the Confraternity of Santa Croce, this church preserves a Crowned Virgin and Saints by Boniforte Oldoni (1578) on the main altar. On the opposite wall, a simple wooden crucifix has its lower end conspicuously worn by the age-old touch of pilgrims. Inside the church there is the crypt in which the remains of the Blessed Maddalena Panatieri were discovered. The entire block on the left constituted the convent of San Domenico.

The church of Misericordia or All Saints: it was built in 1585 by the Archconfraternity of Oration and Death, which had the task of accompanying those condemned to death to the gallows

Santa Maria della Neve or dell'Addolorata: it is a small church with a very simple facade; what is particularly notable is the decoration of the portal. Inside we can observe a polychrome wooden statue of Our Lady of Sorrows, the work of Severino Felice Cassini, dating back to the first half of the 18th century. Every Good Friday a solemn procession starts from the church with the statues of Our Lady of Sorrows and the dead Christ, accompanied by the Confraternity of the Humiliate.

Madonna del Buon Consiglio: it was built in 1763. The interior, dominated by the central polygonal dome, is entirely frescoed with a beautiful illusionistic effect. Church of Divine Providence: built entirely at the expense of Canon Pietro Irico, the small church called "del bric" was blessed in 1910.

Sacro Cuore (Sacred Heart): this church, designed by the engineer Felice Lucca, was blessed and opened for worship in 1881. Starting from 1890, the church was linked to the Salesian Family, which thus began its excellent insertion into the history of Trino. The church of Mary Help of Christians, where the first mass was celebrated in 1945, is today closed; it is part of the complex (currently privately owned) in which the Salesian Sisters, or rather the daughters of Mary Help of Christians, carried out their mission as educators until the end of the 1980s

Madonna delle Vigne: this sanctuary was built between 1696 and 1713. It was active until the end of the 1960s, when human neglect led to a notable decline. Today we are trying to recover it and return it to worship, as a monument of particular artistic and historical value.

Palazzo Biandrà di Reaglie: it is a splendid eighteenth-century building located in the heart of the ancient Fusa district, the popular neighborhood of the city. Inside, on the right, we can admire an ancient altar which was used privately by the Biandrà family. Currently owned by the municipality, the resulting accommodation is intended as a residence for the Trini elderly. Palazzo Ara or Torta: dates back to the 18th century. Particularly notable is the portal, finely decorated in the center. At the beginning of the 19th century, Napoleon I was hosted there.

Palazzo Pugiella: located at the beginning of via Gennaro (the "rua di S. Bartolomeo"), the complex was owned by the Pugiella family, who lived there until 1676. The first floor is still embellished with coffered ceilings with painted tiles.

The Paleologo Palace (Piazza Garibaldi): it was built starting from 1152 by William the Elder of Monferrato. Between the beginning of the 14th century and the end of the 15th century, it was the seat of the Palaiologi court. The castle hosted popes (Martin V in 1417) and emperors (Sigismund). The construction features decorative elements of a Moorish character, rare of their kind in Piedmont. Part of the frescoes detached from inside the castle are today preserved in the Town Hall and in the Civic Library.

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