Seclusion, solitude and scenic settings: Italy’s hidden monasteries

Hermitage of San Colombano, Trambileno. Photo by freeteo
Hermitage of San Colombano, Trambileno. Photo by freeteo
Ever since Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness, Christians have sought solitude as an act of devotion and dedication to peaceful prayer. Devout and secluded Christian communities began to spring up across Europe as early as the 3rd and 4th century AD. And Greece, Ireland and Italy were at the forefront of the new practice, establishing a pious tradition of reclusion and isolation with remote monasteries and hermitages. Today, some of the earliest Italian examples survive alongside later...

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