Madonna della Corona, a sanctuary overlooking the Adige valley
- Category What to do Lake Garda and Verona
Presentation and history
The Sanctuary of the Madonna della Corona is the ideal destination for those who want to combine moments of prayer and inner serenity with opportunities to relax and enjoy in complete tranquility the shows that nature can offer you in this enchanting place.
The Sanctuary is located in Spiazzi in one of the most evocative places in northern Italy. It stands clinging to the rock of the surrounding mountains, 774 meters above the sea, overlooking the Adige valley.
The Diocesan Sanctuary of Verona of the Madonna della Corona is open all year round at the following times:
November - March: from 8.00 to 18.00
April - October: from 7.00 to 19.30
The Sanctuary of the Crown is a place of silence and meditation, suspended between heaven and earth, hidden in the heart of the Baldo rocks.
Medieval documents attest that already around the year 1000 in the Baldo area lived some hermits linked to the Abbey of San Zeno in Verona and that at least from the second half of 1200 there was a monastery and a chapel dedicated to S. Maria di Montebaldo accessible through a narrow and dangerous path in the rock. A pious tradition placed the birth of the Sanctuary of the Madonna della Corona in 1522, the year in which the sculpture venerated here was miraculously transferred by angelic intervention from the island of Rhodes, invaded by the Muslim army of Suleiman II, but the dating is denied by the the existence, in the recesses of the current Sanctuary, of a 14th century painting of a Madonna with child, which was the first image venerated in the original church, which took its name from it.
Between 1434 and 1437 S. Maria di Montebaldo became the property of the Knights of San Giovanni, or of the Holy Sepulcher, present in Verona since 1362 as a commendam of San Vitale and Sepolcro, who kept the ownership of the Sanctuary until dissolution by Napoleonic provision in 1806. The stone group of the Pietà, later venerated as Madonna della Corona , seems to date back to this period. 70cm high, 56cm wide and 25cm deep, the statue is made of local painted stone. The statue rests on a pedestal bearing the inscription “HOC OPUS FEClT FIERI LODOVICUS D CASTROBARCO D 1432”, traditionally considered as proof that the statue was commissioned and donated to the Crown in 1432 by Lodovico Castelbarco, coming from a noble family from Rovereto.
In the four centuries of management, the Commenda radically transformed the Madonna della Corona, turning it into an authentic spacious and accessible sanctuary thanks to the arrangement of the wooden access bridge to the valley (1458) and the construction of a new church over the pre-existing 18 meters by 7 (1490-1521). In the course of the sixteenth century, the two access stairs still visible were built: the widest, with 556 steps, which from the source of Spiazzi, later called "Fonte dell'Indipendenza", descended to the lime tree bridge, and the narrower one, of 234 steps, carved into the rock along the original narrow path that led from the bridge to the church.