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Magnifica Comunità
di Fiemme

Il Palazzo, Museo Pinacoteca

Magnifica Comunità
di Fiemme

Il Palazzo, Museo Pinacoteca

History

The parish church

In the religious organization of the land, parish churches ruled all the devoted people and every holy building on their territory. This is a Middle Ages structure; in Fiemme valley and in many other valleys it even goes back to the late Longobardic period.

In the Avisio valleys there are three parish churches: St. John in Vigo di Fassa, Holy Mary in Cavalese and Holy Mary in Cembra.

The parish church of Holy Mary in Cavalese was the largest and ruled over the whole community, Stramentizzo, Valfloriana and Capriana (these three villages belonged to the Tyrolean jurisdiction of Castello) and Anterivo (jurisdiction of Aldino and Redagno).

Not only the construction and upkeep of churches witnessed the devotion of the populace. The valley is scattered with roadside shrines and frescoes representing above all the Holy Lady. Deep piousness is also proved by many bequests to charities, by the relevance of religious festivities and the processions.

In past centuries, however, ignorance and the need to find an answer to many existential problems caused superstition to be widespread. At the beginning of the 16th century Fiemme valley was hit by a series of negative situations which endangered harvests and cattle. The population itself was threatened by starvation and plagues. Trying to find an explanation, the populace believed God was displeased for somebody’s malicious behavior thus provoking this misery. Strange or simply peculiar people, women who practiced herbal medicine, rich women without relations to protect them were put to trial on the basis of witchcraft and sentenced to the stake.

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