Abbiategrasso, Lombardy, Italy
- Altitude: 120 m a.s.l
- Population: about 30,000 inhabitants
- Zip/postal code: 20081
- Phone Area Code: 02
- Patron Saint: Santa Rosa da Lima, celebrated on 23 August
- Frazioni & Localities: Baraggetta, Bellotta, Canova di Sopra, Case Rurali, Cavallotta, Cittadina, Mendosio, Meraviglia, Nuova Bassano, San Donato, Scocca
Provinces of Lombardy
History - Antiquity
History - the Middle Ages
The early borough was surrounded by walls with 4 gates - San Pietro to the north, Milano to the East, San Martino to the south and the Porta Nuova to the west. In 1176 the canal called Navigium (present-day Naviglio Grande) was begun, and when finished this masterly engineering project connected Milan, the Ticino and Lake Maggiore.
History - Modern times
In the following century the town was under the Visconti (1277-1450), then the Sforza (1450-1535), the Spaniards (1535-1707) - a period well described in Manzoni's "The Betrothed" and finally the Austrians (1707-1859). In the later 19th century the Industrial revolution started to change this part of Italy, and soon the population grew and new districts were built outside the medieval walls.
What to see
- The basilica of Santa Maria Nuova, built in 1388 for the birth in the town of Giovanni Maria son of Gian Galeazzo Visconti, and in the following century a lodge was added in the front, but left unfinished, possibly on a design by Donato Bramante.
- The Castle, a very ancient fortress, renovated and embellished in 1438 by Filippo Maria Visconti,was a strategic stronghold between the Naviglio Grande and the road Milano-Vigevano.
- The Convento dell'Annunciata, a beautiful 15th century monastery erected in 1466 to fulfil a vow by Galeazzo Maria Sforza , was entrusted to the Franciscans. Suppressed by the French in 1810, it was first a hospital, then a warehouse, and later a dwelling. Only in recent years the monument was brought back to its original architecture, and the renovation works brought to light a fresco cycle on the wall of the apse, representing Stories of the Life of the Virgin Mary, dated 1519 and signed by Nicola Mangone alias Moietta, a painter of the Caravaggio school, as well as more frescoes on the walls of the refectory.