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Church of the Beata Vergine della Misericordia

Building of the new oratory started in 1555 by the Confraternità della Misericordia (the Confraternity of the Blessed Virgin of Mercy, founded in Castelnovo in 1270).

Address and contacts

Piazza Prampolini - 42024 Castelnovo di Sotto
+39 0522 485711 or 0522 683780 - Town Hall

Opening times


How to get there

See the indication to reach Castelnovo di Sotto

Historical notes

The oratory, which subsequently became the current church, was dedicated to the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin to replace the previous one that had collapsed and works were completed in 1598.
Starting at the beginning of 1600, the church interior was decorated, by some of the major Italian artists of the period, including Lorenzo Franchini (Our Lady of the Rosary, 1602), Palma il Giovane (The Crucifixion, 1614), and Lionello Spada (Nativity of the Blessed Virgin, 1616).
Between the end of the 17th and the beginning of the 18th centuries, four out of the seven altars have been embellished with frontals in polychrome scagliola.
Following the 1806 earthquake, the façade was raised. The façade paintwork is attributed to the scene-painter from Reggio Emilia Cesare Cervi and dated to the year 1869.
The "Church of the Madonna" is the property of the local Council of Castelnovo Sotto.
From the mid-1990s, the church has provided the venue for several cultural initiatives, including exhibits and classical music concerts sponsored by the Council.
The church is used for specific religious functions such as weddings and rites dedicated to the Madonna.
Despite the abundant use of conventional decorative features such as garlands, niches, corbels, and false parameters, the building is nevertheless well-structured and harmonious as a whole.
The false entrance hall on the side of the current Via Gramsci is quite striking, in contrast to the upper part of the façade which is softened by a pre-existing window and false niches.
The angle of the façade turned toward the right enhances the lengthened perspective of the church front.