Rotondi

Annunziata to Campizze

Via Annunziata is a historical street of Rotondi, core of a casale with the same same. They both take the name from the Church of Annunziata, the parish church of Rotondi (and nowadays the only one in full service): it is located halfway along the street, surrounded by a big open space. The rest of the street is quite narrow, and surrounded by landowners' houses with their typical stone portals and courtyards.

Church of Santissima Annunziata

Chiesa della Santissima Annunziata

The main church of Rotondi was built during 18th century on behalf of the Royal Holy House of Annunziata in Naples, an important religious foundation that used to own some lands in Rotondi. An hospital, now disappeared, was attached to the church.
The interior features a unique, barrel vault covered nave. Baroque architectural details characterize both the nave and the façade; the abundance of stucco capitols and angel figures is particularly evident. The interior, besides, preserves several wooden statues. The bell tower, on the right of the façade, has a rustic appearance; it is octagon-shaped, and its edges are marked with stones in view. Rotondi - Piccola grande Italia [YouTube]

A video introducing Rotondi. It is not really well done, but includes several views of the church (starting from 4:30).

Assumption of the Virgin Mary, painted on the vault Monument for the 300 years of the new icon of Madonna della Stella This panel in ceramic tiles has been placed in the church's square in 2005, to celebrate the 300th anniversary from when the archbishop Vincenzo Maria Orsini donated to Rotondi the current statue of Madonna della Stella, kept in the Sanctuary.
The monument has been realized by local people, including the school students, supervised by Maria Cristina Gallo; it is meant to symbolize the devotion of people longing to the Virgin Mary (represented as a star); whereas the tag below reports the Bible verse about the alliance of Jews with God. Trecento anni di amore e devozione - Madonna della Stella

This page on the website of the Sanctuary talks about the celebrations for the 300th anniversary.

Full view from the church's square Main altar The church features a composite marble altar, inserted within a half-circular apse. Behind the altar are three statues, in particular one of Christ in the middle. The original, Byzantine statue of Madonna della Stella, the one that used to be kept in the sanctuary of the same name on the mountains until the archbishop Vincenzo Maria Orsini donated a new one, used to be kept here; but I do not know where has it been moved now.
View of the interior Statue of St. Vincent Ferrer It is rather common that emigrants from villages of southern Italy retained their attachment to their place of origin and its traditions. For instance, the tag at the bottom of this statue reminds that is has been restored by Vincenzo D'Onofrio, resident in Brooklyn. Statue of St. Michael, patron saint of Rotondi The statue is kept at the bottom of the bell tower. The Archangel Michael is represented as stepping on the Devil; it is notable that the latter has been represented as a black man, during an age that was not facing any issues concerning multiculturalism and racism yet.
The front, seen from Via Annunziata Decorations of the façade View of the entrance to the church The choir, located over the entrance, is held by two columns. The whole church perimeter is decorated by pilaster strips topped by Corinthian-style capitols.
Stone portal accessing the courtyard of D'Ambrosio House (1790) The portal, and the arcades around the courtyard of Stellato House (1790) Coat of arms on the portal of Lanni House (1798) Glimpse towards Lanni House from Gallo Building

Gallo Building

Palazzo Gallo

The residential building of the Gallo family marks the border of the old centre of Rotondi; it is an isolated building, dating back to 1880. Its long front features 2 main portals and 4 stone-framed, smaller ones at the ground floor (part of which have been turned into windows), and 6 windows at the upper floor, with decorated cornices, in a style influenced by the Liberty tendencies. The ledge is decorated as well. The position of the building is such that the rightmost portal appears just at the bottom of Via Annunziata.
Nowadays, the building is divided among several families, and has been partly spoilt by refurbishment interventions that did not respect the exterior design.
The front from the corner on Via Annunziata Coat of arms of the Gallo family The coat of arms of the family is simply the literal meaning of their name, 'cock'; it is placed above the rightmost balcony of the building, namely the most evident position for visitors coming from the town centre. The same coat of arms can be found on top of Gallo-Gemma House in Paolisi.
North of Annunziata and of the public gardens there is a large, modern residential area, that grew west of the old casale of Campuri, located along a road connecting the Appian Way with the Partenio slopes. Several, smaller roads get lost in the countryside and eventually catch the Appian Way, around which there is the commercial and industrial suburb of Campizze. Although it is characterized by modern edifices, it is thought that a church called San Festo existed here in 1108 and for some centuries afterwards.
Train approaching the station of Rotondi Rotondi has its own station on the secondary railway line that connects Benevento with Naples. Trains are not operated by the national service, but by a regional one (the Ente Autonomo Volturno), and are sadly famous for being outdated and unreliable. Country buildings at Campuri
The mountains of Rotondi as seen from Campuri The Sanctuary of Madonna della Stella lies along the woody slope of Colle Lordicale, behind which there is Cima Recuorvo. The stream Pirozza Pirozza takes its name from the neighbourhood of Cervinara that traverses, more uphill than here. It is not much more than a ditch, collecting the water running down from the mountains of Cervinara. Not far from the point in the picture, it merges with other similar ditches to originate the river Isclero.

Church of San Sebastiano

Chiesa di San Sebastiano

The church of San Sebastiano was born as a rural church along the Appian Way at Campizze, and probably replaces the one with the same name that used to be in the main square of Rotondi, now disappeared. As an inscription on top of the front states, it was built in 1929 by donation of some Domenico Clemente.
The front, with its bell tower, is extremely sober. The interior is more interesting: it is barrel-vaulted, and mostly painted. On the right of the nave, behind the bell tower, there is a smaller chapel with a statue of the Virgin Mary. A picture of the inscription [Comuni-italiani.it]
The front The chancel
Statue of St. Sebastian A detail of the vault
Copyright 2014 Antonio De Capua