Pianezza, Province of Torino, Piedmont
The town's origin goes back to the Roman period, though today it is a small but lively industrial center along the left banks of the Dora Riparia, a tributary of the Po river. The territory consists of the old town, three newer residential areas and a large surrounding area of cultivated fields.
- Altitude: 325 m a.s.l
- Population: about 13,000 inhabitants
- Zip/postal code: 10044
- Dialing Area Code: +39 011
- Patron Saint: Madonna della Stella, celebrated on 12th September
- Frazioni & Localities: Grange, Parucco.
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Provinces of Piedmont
The site was probably a Roman camp and a center of agricultural supplies for the legions, and was a key transit point being along the route connecting Italy to France. Around the 10th century AD Pianezza was a fortified borough, then in the following centuries it came under the Savoy family, who gave it as a fiefdom to a numebr of different lords, among them the Simiana, who changed the castle into a rich mansion. In the 17th century the textile industry developed along the Dora Riparia river, and the population started to grow.
What to see
- In the medieval borough, the church of San Pietro in the Romanesque style, with a fresco in the lunette over the portal by Aimone Duce, and inside 15th century frescos of St Peter and the apostles, probably by Giacomo Iaquerio.
- The Sanctuary of San Pancrazio, built over the site of a miracle that took place in 1450.
- The church of SS. Pietro and Paolo, built in 1727 on a design by Filippo Juvarra.
- The "Madonna della Stella", about half a mile outside the town, already existing in 1025, was a transit point for pilgrims directed to the sanctuary of St. James the Apostle at Campo della Stella (Compostella), from which place it took its name. The church has old paintings with beautiful frescoes against natural landscapes, representing scenes of the live of the Virgin Mary. The population has a great devotion to the Madonna della Stella, which according to the tradition healed the town from a malignant disease - possibly an influenza epidemics - in 1714, an event that is, celebrated on the 12th September with a solemn procession led by the municipality authorities.