Church of San Lorenzo in Orco
The church of a medieval “castrum”
The medieval church of San Lorenzo in Orco, mentioned in documents for the first time in 1195, is set on a small hill in the inland of Finale where the “castrum Orche” once rose, that is the castle of Orco, remembered in a 1162 diploma of emperor Frederick
The church went through various transformations and in the 15th century a small stone and brick bell tower was built. It rises on the Finale stone cliffs that constitute the natural scenery of this site so rich with history.
MORE INFORMATION – Church of San Lorenzo in Orco
The medieval church of San Lorenzo in Orco initially rose in Romanesque style on the hill where the Orco castle rose, mentioned as the “castrum Orchae” in a 1162 diploma of emperor Frederick the 1st of Swabia. The first traces regarding the church date back to 1195, when the marquis Enrico II Del Carretto donated, for the redemption of his sins, the tithes on the vines, mills and buildings for the production of canvas set in the valley floor of Feglino.
The cross shaped single-lancet window, made out of a single block of stone, originally belonged to the Romanesque church and was then reused in the late medieval church.
In the 15th century the church was rebuilt by reusing elements of the former building. It had a polygonal apse that was constructed directly on the rocky cliff. On the left side a small bell tower was built with small arches, bezels and brick mullioned windows with columns. On the right side of the nave, commissioned by Bartolomeo Fresia at the end of the 15th century, a series of devotional frescos with the image of the Virgin and Child, of saints and St. George in the act of killing the dragon were painted.
The inner vault of the apse was decorated around 1571 with frescos depicting the Eternal Father between the four Evangelists painted in the lunettes.
In 1674 the title of parish was moved to the church dedicated to Nostra Signora delle Grazie that had recently been built in the locality of Colletta and then dedicated to San Lorenzo. The ancient church, now called San Lorenzino, however, kept its role in the devotion of the local population.
HOW TO REACH
CHURCH OF SAN LORENZO IN ORCO
How to reach the site
The church can be reached on foot by following a short and easy path that starts from the area contiguous to the tourist accommodation point along the road for Orco, where one can leave their car.
The area of the castle of Orco is part of a project for the creation of a naturalistic and archaeological park promoted by the town of Orco Feglino.
Calendar of visits