Eremo San Giorgio

The place

The hermitage of Bardolino is located on the Monte San Giorgio, the promontory overlooking the eastern coast of Lake Garda in Bardolino territory, between Lazise and Garda. It is connected to the town by a road partly still unpaved and - as usual in most of the hermitages Camaldolese - the last stretch significantly increased. In consequence orientation that characterizes the complex hermit - arranged in the east-south-east-west north-west - to lean from the top of a lookout unmatched is precisely the area of the enclosure which provides a discreet protective diaphragm a centuries-old cypress crown.


It is in 1665 that fathers Basil and Joseph - Camaldolese monks of the congregation of Monte Corona from the monastery of Monte Rua and Monte San Giorgio for two years to follow the construction of the new house - could move permanently to the new hermitage, well soon followed by other brothers. The hermitage of Bardolino is therefore the most recent one we considered in this book. The name that distinguishes the site on which stands the hermitage complex - as mentioned above, entitled to St. George - remember the old church that up to 1532 dominated this hill and in turn dedicated to the Dalmatian saint. In 1661, a nobleman of Padua, Giovan Battista Dotti, became part of the congregation Coronese which oblate at the hermitage of Monte Rua. Of all his considerable possessions he kept for himself - with the intention to make a gift to his new adoptive communities - the only Monte San Giorgio. At this act of generosity was added the no less important than a local noble another - some Alvise Becelli which provident, at their own expense, to incorporate the noble legacy of Padua with the purchase of the areas on top of the mountain, which is not they were owned by Dotti. The period of great flowering of the hermitage of Monte Rua, in half of the seventeenth century, is well combined with the unexpected availability of such a desirable tract of land in an extremely picturesque area is characterized by a favorable climate which seem. Within a few months had therefore start work on the construction of the new chapel, ended, as mentioned, in 1665. Already in 1672 the hermitage could be elevated to the priory and the first prior of the community was, significantly, Odo, brother Alvise Becelli. No fact was particularly upsetting then to disturb the peace of the hermitage of Monte San Giorgio, up to years in which- nearly a century and a half later - to the Napoleonic decree suppressed all convents and monasteries in the Kingdom of Italy even the monastic community of Mount S. Giorgio was dispersed (1). It was only thanks to the initiative of the private hermit complex escaped the destruction, although this meant for years, in fact, its destination to another use: the Danish Count Buri fact used the Hermitage buildings - in the meantime he had bought at his own expense - as a shelter for farmers engaged in the cultivation of surrounding lands. Dates from that time the destruction of the three cells of the middle row and the transformation in the soil for the cultivation also the area on which they originally arose buildings. Only in 1885 the monks Camaldolese could regain possession of the hermitage, riacquistandolo by an heir of Buri. Since then to the present day, the monastery of St. George remained the property of the hermits, except for about a decade (between 1962 and 1972) when he was assigned to the diocese of Verona - which made it a home for spiritual exercises - because of the impossibility for the Camaldolese community, which fell excessively in number, to bear the burden that resulted from the management for a period of buildings and land.