The church of San Michele in Massa
Massa - 42010 Toano
How to get there:
From the administrative capital it's about 15 km
From the administrative capital you take the SP 8 following the directions for Cerredolo, at 5 km from the administrative capital you come to the road for Massa
E' vistabile esternamente.
Per visitarla internamente rivolgersi a 0522 805124
The church of San Michele Archangel is probably of Matildic origin. It is cited in a diploma of Federico Barbarossa of 1164 even though the building must be from a much more antique period. From 1173 the place appears as being subject to the Frassinoro Abbey. The church presents decorative work which, in spite of numerous restorations still retains in part the original mark. In 1683 and in the following century the church underwent different reconstructions amongst which the reconstruction of the bell tower. In 1854 further restoration works involved the façade, which was redone with a new door of almost neo-classic style. Between 1960 and 1970 the apse was rebuilt. The church is liturgically built and has a sloping façade ending with a slight cyma in living rock. The only part which appears intact and original is the southern wall near the lateral door. Amongst the inscriptions which can be seen there's one on the architrave above the portal "..ALIUD A.D.1501 – S. MICH. ARCH. S. ANDREA AP. LOCATUMFUER AV. QUOD MDCCCLIV D.S..R" Above the central oculus the following is written "VETUS NOV AS SUBLIMIT AS ET FORMA EFFECTA EST ANO MDCLXXXIII PEREGRINO FRASSINETO REGENTE". At the top of the façade there's a stone fragment with the upper part of a ray-shaped cross. To the side of the door you notice the depiction of a dog and of a braided frieze. On the southern wall there's a stone, which is fixed, of exceptional interest and difficult to date (VIII – IX century?), which represents the expulsion from the earthy paradise. The characters emerge from the stone incision in such a way that the part which is more in relief is at the same level on the original surface of the stone. Next to it there's another relief depicting perhaps a wolf, which seems to belong to a much later period, probably dating back to the end of the XI century. The inside of the church is hall-shaped with a semi-circular apse. The ceiling is of the simple wooden truss type. The Presbytery has a barrel groin arch. The bell tower rises next to the northern side.
At the beginning of the climb toward the church, on the left, there's the Madonna delle Grazie oratory, attributable probably to the second half of the XIX century. The oratory is made simply having a sloping façade, stone surface with polished angulars. The inside is hall-shaped with a semi-circular apse. The pilaster strips with false flutes support a high-fascia string course on which the ribbed and adorned barrel arch is imposed.
Last update: March 7, 2023