The hermitage of San Biagio

The hermitage of San Biagio: history and tradition


Ancient, fascinating and mysterious, the hermitage of San Biagio stands among the rugged ravines of the Novella stream, just a stone’s throw from the entrance to our Novella River Park. This structure was erected starting from the thirteenth century, perhaps on pre-existing early medieval buildings. The first certain information of its existence is attributed to a parchment of 1307.

Over the years, San Biagio has been a place of work, assistance, prayer and housing, still privately owned and inhabited by the custodians.

The structure of the hermitage


Front façade of the chapel


The hermitage consists of an older nucleus, the Romanesque chapel, dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. The interior of this splendid building consists of vaults supported by six monolithic columns, frescoes (among which is visible, although washed out, the one depicting St. Christopher, protector of pilgrims, dated to the fifteenth century) and a statue representing the Madonna and Child.

The statue of the Madonna is a valuable late Gothic artifact (fifteenth century), sculpted by a German carver and still venerated by visitors.

The adjacent main chapel, on the other hand, is dedicated to St. Blaise and is of fifteenth-century form. Its peculiarity is a well in the center of the church that today serves as an altar.

During your visit to the Novella River Park you can admire it from a distance, hidden among the vegetation.


The Madonna and Child

The traditional Feast of St. Blaise

The hermitage is generally inaccessible. A few times a year, however, it opens its doors to the public and, one of these, is precisely on February 3, the day on which the Christian calendar commemorates the figure of this holy Armenian bishop, of the third century. Every year, on this special day, the parish priest of Romallo celebrates mass for the faithful in the small church dedicated to St. Blaise.

Traditionally, before concluding the celebration, the priest places candles on the throat invoking the protection of St. Blaise against sore throats and, in general, all ailments of the respiratory system.

At the end of the mass, the Facinelli family, owners of the structure since the 90s, offers a snack with hot drinks to warm up from the cold and share a convivial moment around the hermitage.


St. Blaise is considered the protector of gluttony and the evils that can arise from it. The relationship between the throat, understood as an organ of our body, and the place where the hermitage is built is very interesting and curious. The hermitage is in fact located in the middle of the gorges of the stream that form the Novella River Park, gorges that are also called canyons or gorges!


If you want to know more, we are waiting for you on our Instagram and Facebook ☺ page but above all…. at the Park!! 😉