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The Sacra di San Michele - Turin, Italy

April 12, 2016

The Sacra di San Michele, or Saint Michael's Abbey, was a unique church on Mount Pirchiriano in the province of Turin. It had an awesome view of the Susa valley, even though it was slightly cloudy.

 

 Taken from the walk up to the Sacra di San Michele

 

 

Little model of the Sacra di San Michele 

 

 

 

My favorite part of the visit was the Monastery ruins that were built between the twelfth and fourteenth century. Next to the ruins is also the “Tower of Beautiful Alda” which is named after the legend of Alda the peasant girl. It is said that Alda came to Sacra to pray against the evils of the war but was unluckily ambushed by enemy soldiers. When she tried to liberate herself from the assault she was trapped in the top of tower, so she threw herself into the ravine while praying to St. Michael and the Virgin. Miraculously un hurt she survived the fall, but out of vanity and monetary gain she thought she could do a second jump to prove to unbelieving civilians, but she jumped to her death despite her prior miraculous salvation. 

 

The view of the valley and the Monastery Ruins, the tower of Beautiful Alda is the far right

 

 

There is a brief 10 minute walk to the church from the parking lot which was peaceful and relaxing. The church seems way bigger from the outside but is nicely kept. Every visitor gets an informational pamphlet that talks about the significant parts and architecture of the church. Some other highlights were the staircase of the dead, Michael the Archangel and the church which is occupied with tombs of departed monks. 

 

 

 Inside the church

 

One of the tombs 

 

 

 

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