Pieve di Romena (Romena Parish Church)

TEMPORE FAMIS MCLII (during the famine, 1152) This inscription is carved into the capital of the first column on the left, entering the splendid Church of St. Peter in Romena and it gives the circumstances and the year in which this Romanesque church was built.

Originally this was not the first column in the row, but the third. The façade and the first two arches of the church collapsed in 1678. In spite of this, the parish church in Romena is the most important church, from an architectural point of view, in the Casentino area.

It is in pure Romanesque style and no-one can help but be fascinated by it. In the morning, beams of light enter from the biphora and triphora of the apse and light up the rough, yet elegant, capitals which were certainly carved by Lombard workers, the same ones who, more or less in the same period, carved the capitals in the parish church at Stia, Strada in Casentino and Montemignaio.

This Romanesque, three-nave church was built on a pre-existing religious structure dating back probably to the 8th century; the remains and certain fragments are visible from the under-crypt which is reached by a stair to the right, inside the building.

Up to a few years ago, this parish church held important works of medieval art. These are conserved today in the nearby provostship of Pratovecchio. From the outside, the most interesting part of the church in Romena, which has been declared a National Monument, is the apse. To a visitor coming from Pratovecchio or the Castello di Romena (a road also branches off from the strada della Consuma) it appears as a perfectly framed sculpture in the midst of a classic Tuscan landscape, the typical splendid landscape of the Casentino.

As of 1991, the Parish is also the seat of the Fraternità di Romena, a place of faith and friendship.