Montevirginio: Hermitage of the Discalced Carmelites
The Monastery was founded by the Carmelite friar Virginio Orsini who, having given up his properties, convinced his brother, Duke Paolo Giordano, to donate a sum of money for the construction of the Hermitage of the Discalced Carmelite Fathers, which was concluded in 1668, after 17 years of work. With an impressive rectangular plan, the building integrates harmoniously with the surrounding natural environment, rich in chestnut, hazelnut and beech woods.
Inside, it includes a large cloister, surrounded by the rooms on the first floor: friars’ cells, guest rooms, places for prayer and all the service rooms. On the upper floor are the rooms for the religious in charge of the chores, the barns and the fruit storage, while the basement housed the cellars, the workrooms, the joiner’s room and the oven. It was thus a large building, which in addition included an estate that was for centuries a flourishing farm with kitchen gardens, vineyards, orchards and stables. Today, the few Carmelite friars run a small farm to meet the needs of the Monastery, which is still a training centre for Carmelite novices and a reception centre for young people and groups.