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St. Francis' Convent

What to see in Susa, Torino, Piedmont


the origin of the convent was attributed by tradition at the same Friar Francis, but this reading is not supported by the documents. According to legend the first Friars Minor, in the company of the Holy, stood in the city of Susa, guests of Beatrice of Geneva, wife of the Conte di Savoia Thomas I. In this occasion Francis would have donated to the noblewoman, as a sign of acceptance of a land where establish their own community, a sleeve of the poor habit; this relic is today preserved in the church of the Friars Minor Capuchin to Annecy, after being hosted for a long period in the Sainte Chapelle of Chambéry.

The Franciscan convent of Susa acquired soon after an important role both in the religious and civil and had the characteristic of being a foundation "abnormal", because it is located in a locality situated within the Alpine region and not close to the same as had happened for other foundations of the area. Suppressed in the Napoleonic era, it was riaffidato with the Franciscan friars in 1899. These latter have definitively left in 2007 the house segusina and former convent now performs activity of acceptance for groups and individual pilgrims.

Inside the church, the head of the right nave hosts a pictorial cycle of the XV century representing the Evangelists and the Apostles Peter and Paul, while the capitulary hall has a cycle with Franciscan saints and blesseds dating back to 1340-50, with an interesting depiction of Saint Francis receiving the stigmata. Finally, in the new sacristy are visible figures of the Virgin of La Maddalena and S. Bernardo, still partially under bland. In the header of the left aisle, the chapel said the chapel of the Crib, originally dedicated to funerary uses, presents a frescoed cycle of great interest, dating back to the XIV century and recently rediscovered and restored, dedicated to the theme of death and of salvation: particularly intense are depictions of the crucifixion and the cavalcade of three live and three deaths.

In the cloister greater, called San Francesco, are preserved ancient stone fragments, three epigraphs of the Thirteenth Century, three epigraphs of three hundred and two beautiful windows in terracotta fifteenth-century in Gothic style in Piedmont. On the side of the cloister adjacent to the church you can admire also fragments, recently restored, a fifteenth-century fresco depicting Saint Anne, the Madonna and Child and a male figure.

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