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Abbey of Sant'Antimo

Listed under Churches & Abbeys in Tuscany, Italy.

  • Photo of Abbey of Sant'Antimo
  • Photo of Abbey of Sant'Antimo
  • Photo of Abbey of Sant'Antimo
  • Photo of Abbey of Sant'Antimo
  • Photo of Abbey of Sant'Antimo
Photo of Abbey of Sant'Antimo
Photo by Donna Dawson
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Abbey of Sant'Antimo - The origins of the abbey date to a small oratory built here, on the location of a former Roman villa, in 352 at the death of Anthimus. In 715 it was cared by the diocese of Chiusi.  Saint Antimo was a martyr.
In 770 the Lombards commissioned the construction of a Benedictine monastery, which had also to act as a hotel for the pilgrims directed to Rome. In 781, in his trip back from Rome, Charlemagne, gave his imprint to the construction, though the version according to which he was the founder of the abbey is most likely a legend. In 814 a document by Louis the Pious made it an imperial abbey. Later the abbot received the title of Palatine Count. At his apex, the abbey possessed 96 castles, terrains and other lands, as well as 85 monasteries, churches and hospitals. Their most important possession was the castle of Montalcino , which was the abbot's residence. We arrived early which to our surprise was perfect timing as the priests and brothers called mass using Gregorian chant. There is mass only once per day, although they are called to prayer seven times each day. The mass only lasted about 20 minutes and those who came out afterwards said that it was incredibly special to be there for that. It also didn’t hurt to be among olive trees that were over 1000 years old…incredible.

Written by  Donna Dawson.

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