Viterbo – Basilica Sanctuary of Santa Maria della Quercia

Far away from Rome (roughly 100 km) you can find the Church of the Oak.

I doubt that people will understand you if you call it like that, the name in Italian is much more longer. At least ask for the chiesa della quercia, it would be easier and people will surely be glad to give you the right direction to reach it.

This is the most important Sanctuary in the Viterbo province. Its history starts in 1417 when mastro Battista Luzzante hung a painting of the Virgin Mary on a oak.

At this point a legend takes over.

The ceiling is made of pure gold (roughly 70 kg)

The ceiling is made of pure gold (roughly 70 kg)

According to the legend, in 1467 a non specified knight, chased by his ennemies, stopped underneath the oak and, all of a sudden, he became invisible!

The historians report a plague in the same year and the oak cult started with 30.000 devotees gathered around the oak to pray the Virgin Mary and invoke her pity.

The plague stopped after only one week.

Because of this event people built a Sanctuary around the oak and its cult spread all over Italy in a few years.

I am aware it looks like a painting but it is a real cat behind a real window

I am aware it looks like a painting but it is a real cat behind a real window

In 1873 it became a National Monument.

13 thoughts on “Viterbo – Basilica Sanctuary of Santa Maria della Quercia

  1. Voglio trasferirmi in Italia. [ O in Toscana o in Alta Badía. ] – Soprattutto dopo aver ricreato la mia visione in foto magnifiche.

    I want to move to live Italy. Or in Tuscany or in Alta Badía. – Especially after recreating my vision in such magnificent photos.

  2. Such a fabulous ceiling in that second last shot. I love the shape and all the details! I think you could spend a long time taking photos there 🙂 🙂

  3. Good that you were with me and you wrote this post because I didn’t understand why the oak was so significant. 😀 I’m much lazier: still need to upload my photos… Your door and ceiling and cat and all the rest are beautiful. <3

Leave a Reply to Manja Mexi Mexcessive Cancel reply