San Rocco di Piegara

Infobox CityIT
official_name = San Rocco di Piegara
img_coa =
img_coa_small =
region =
province =
elevation_footnotes =
elevation_m = 640
population_total = 1000
population_as_of = 2007
coordinates = coord|45.552|N|11.087|E|type:city(2,129)_region:IT
gentilic = sanrocchetti
telephone = 045
postalcode = 37028
saint = San Rocco
day = August 16th
mapx = 45.6000
mapy = 11.0667
native_name =
name = San Rocco di Piegara


website =

San Rocco di Piegara is a "frazione" of Roverè Veronese (VR) which is one of the 13 ancient cimbrian towns.


Geography

The village of San Rocco di Piegara lies on the lower Lessini Mountains, on the ridge between the "Squaranto" valley and the "Mezzane" valley, in a quite flat area where you can see the typical landscape of Lessinia. It can be reached through the provincial road SP-35 that begins in Montorio, about 6 km northeast of Verona. Along the way from south to north one meets the villages of Trezzolano and Cancello. From San Rocco continuing along the SP-35 one reaches San Vitale in Arco (4 km), which is also a frazione of Roverè, whilst turning east one finds San Mauro di Saline (5 km).The altitude at the village square is 640 m AMSL .

Etymology and History

The name San Rocco (Saint Roch) comes from a vote made by the population to the saint of Montpellier (who lived in the first half of fourteenth century), who is the plague protector together with Saint Sebastian, during the plague of 1630-31. Piegara, a medieval toponym, perhaps derives from 'gare' (a place where salt was traded) and 'pie' that denotes the position of San Rocco located at the foot of Roverè, an ancient 'gare'.The territory of San Rocco was already inhabited since the Bronze Age and then constantly, in the Roman and Medieval eras, as suggested by the findings of "G.Solinas".

The Parish Church

A first chapel built by the Counts Azzini dates back to the seventeenth century, but probably there was previously another church, dependent on the rector of Cancello. Piegara was an autonomous municipality since the fourteenth century. In the first half of the seventeenth century Piegara became independent from Cancello and subjected to the parish of Roverè, while in 1744 it became an independent parish. The current church, dedicated to St. Rocco was begun at the end of the seventeenth century after the fire of the previous one; opened for worship in 1875 and was completed in 1911 with Corinthian-style facade. Today it is presented with a central altarof the seventeenth century, 4 side altars of baroque style and preserves a valuable painting of the Madonna of the Rose painted by Domenico Maccacaro of 1600 (between the two altars on the left). Of great interest is the canvas with St. Charles Borromeo (kneeling before the crucifix and moving towards the Council of Trento), with an enrollment of 1630, placed between the two altars on the right of the church, painted by Lorenzo Bertafino. The bell tower is of the 1888 but it has a cusp of the 1952.


The 'Contrade'

The 'contrade' are the typical districts of the settlement of the Lessini Mountains, consisting of single-family houses with stables and other buildings as the icehouses and the 'baiti', where cheese was made. The building materials were mainly two : the stone for the exterior and wood for the interior, as these materials are easily found in the surrounding area. Preferably they used to be built in sunny places and sheltered by a hillock. Around the districts there are quite a lot of meadows, which were once cultivated with rye and, in the lowest areas, with wheat, as well as numerous fruit trees, such as sour cherry, wallnut, and in the lowest districts, even wild apple and pear trees; these trees, planted in regular rows, used to demarcate the boundaries of a property. Today the 'contrade' are connected with each other through streets, but once the steps were possible only by mule tracks or paths, allowing the transit of wagons.

'Contrade' of San Rocco di Piegara and surroundings

*Doardi (621 m AMSL)
*Negri (621 m AMSL)
*Monte di Sopra (544 m AMSL)
*Monte di Sotto (538 m AMSL)
*Paravanto (495 m AMSL)
*Poli (570 m AMSL)
*Porra (650 m AMSL)
*Baccoi (625 m AMSL)
*Roncari (568 m AMSL)
*Biceghi (567 m AMSL)
*Branzi (542 m AMSL)
*Zina (556 m AMSL)
*Colombare (530 m AMSL)
*Birteli (527 m AMSL)
*Rossi (510 m AMSL)
*Mariotti (606 m AMSL)
*Specula (600 m AMSL)
*Canova (587 m AMSL)
*Casetta (541 m AMSL)
*Maso (510 m AMSL)
*Mire (624 m AMSL)
*Porcara (721 m AMSL)
*Porcarola (751 m AMSL)
*Càmpari (679 m AMSL)
*Bonomi (630 m AMSL)
*Dosso (657 m AMSL)
*Montecchiane (707 m AMSL)
*Sengia Rossa (675 m AMSL)
*Sette Fontane (674 m AMSL)
*Castagna (738 m AMSL)
*Tezze (733 m AMSL)
*Barco (721 m AMSL)
*Vago (603 m AMSL)
*Bosco (640 m AMSL)
*Sella (701 m AMSL)


Economy

Worthy of note is the production of hiking boots and mountaineering footwear, entrusted to three factories of different dimensions: an ancient art wisely handed on until the advent of modern technology applied also to stylistic choices equally innovative and sophisticated materials which are constantly evolving.

Considered to be important activities are those related to the building industry: civil and road construction and earthmoving companies and others of craftmen such as masons, carpenters, painters, electricians and plumbers.

Agriculture consists not only in traditional products such as chestnuts or cherries but also in new crops and innovative techniques such as strawberries in hydroponic cultivation. The abundant presence of flowering lawns and fruit trees promotes beekeeping and honey production.The cattle is intended mainly for the production of milk, but some farmers have recently embarked on the sales activities of organic meat.The hilly position of the village and its vocation to summer holiday spot allowed the nearby places a development in tourism (hotels, restaurants, 'agriturismi').


The 'Maroni' Feast

The ancient feast of 'Maroni' (Chestnuts), which is held annually in San Rocco di Piegara in the penultimate Sunday of October, has become an indispensable seasonal appointment.Autumns welcomes the return of chestnuts and the village is full of people, inviting scents and colored stalls packed with local products.

In the mean while, the hands of skilled craftsmen offer demonstrations of crafts of ancient culture, such as timber and the production of baskets. All accompanied by a pleasant background of folk music that contributes, still more, to create an atmosphere of cheerfulness and joy. In the main square a giant 'rostidora' cooks in a few minutes quintals of 'maroni', while enogastronomical stands offer tastings of wine and home-made food, able to solicit the most demanding palates. The Festival of Maroni becomes the pretext for promoting, through taste, the knowledge of Monti Lessini's tradition, handing on never forgotten flavors and reviving emotions of the past among arts and crafts, music, delicacies and genuine roasted 'maroni' to taste, in good company, with a glass of wine.

Appointments and traditions

*Feast of the Patron (San Rocco)

It is celebrated on the 16th of August and the residents of Roverè follow a procession through the streets of the district.

*Feast of 'Maroni'

An event that is held every year at the penultimate Sunday of October, with the tradition of the tasting of the most characteristical and appetizing fruit found on the Veronese mountain.

*Epiphany, "brusàr la vecia" (to burn the witch)

People of the district form conical heaps made of dry twig and chopped-off branches and they burn them on the evening of the 6th of January. Above the bonfire a puppet, representing an old witch, hence the name, may be hung.

*St. Charles Borromeo, the "bread of the poor"

On the 4th of November, blessed bread is distributed to the population.

External links

* [http://www.sanroccodipiegara.it Site dedicated to San Rocco di Piegara]
* [http://www.lessiniapark.it Lessinia Natural Park]
* [http://www.lessinia.verona.it Comunità Montana della Lessinia]


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