The Collegiate Church
Dedicated to Our Lady of the Assumption, it is situated in the Municipal Square (Piazza del Municipio), the political and religious heat of the burg…
An excellent representation of the Romanesque style of architecture, dateing from the beginning of the 10th or 11th century. Constructed with greenish native fossil-bearing rock, its lines are simple, clean and severe, according to the style of that epoch.
The first structure was erected in 758 by Magno, powerful lord of Castell’Arquato.
In 1117, it was severely damaged by an earthquake . It was rebuilt and consecrated on the 13th of August 1122 by Bishop of Piacenza Aldo Gabrielli. The bell tower, however, dates back to the 14th century.
The Collegiate Church was subject to significant intervention work over the course of the 18th century which changed many parts of it, but even so, in the following century, restoration campaigns began to bring the church back to its original Romanesque splendour.
Simple and austere, the interior is marked by three naves separated by sandstone columns. The central navy has a trussed wooden roof; the side naves have crossed vaulting.
The old baptistery with an 8th century monolithic font for immersion baptisms is located in the small semi-circular apse which is located at the lower lever to the church floor. This font is one of the very few pieces survived the 1177 earthquake, and was already in use in the temple built by Magno.
The large Crucifix, probably in the Lombard school style from the second half of the 18th century, is more than three metres high and more than two metres wide and it dominates the whole altar.
If you look carefully, you will note that the stones which make up the masonry-work of the façade contain traces of shell fossils…