Oratory of S. Giovanni Battista

THE ORATORY OF SAN GIOVANNI BATTISTA

The oratory of S. Giovanni Battista replaced the previous one beneath the ‘collegiata’ as location for the confraternity. It is a small oratory, placed on big pillars with a single entry through a rich portal in white marble and a small statue of the ‘Precursore’ dating back to 1694. The view inside is impressive thanks to the altar and various paintings. On the altar a small statue of S. Giovanni Battista is placed; on his forehead the following sentence is engraved: ‘Antonio Maria Vacaro indoratore fece 1690’. The statue was made by Giovanni Battista Borgogno, also known as Buscaglia. 

The altarpiece depicting the name imposition on Giovanni Battista is the best piece of art by Lorenzo Gastaldi (1625-1690) and depicts several characters dressed in rich costumes dating back to the XVII century. Another painting by Gastaldi is the one showing Saint Francesco comforted by an angel, that used to be the altarpiece of the church of San Francesco, later deconsecrated. The restored painting showing the Holy Trinity, Saint Agnes and Saint Catherine was made by Padre Battista and commissioned by Bartolomeo Zucchetto in 1652. Another fine painting is the one depicting the Virgin Mary (Madonna del Rosario) between Saint Vincenzo Ferrer and Saint Domenico Ferrer, painted by Luca Cambiaso (1527-1585).

Another painting dating back to the XV century was moved here from the church of Sant’Agostino; the painting depicts San Nicola da Tolentino standing on a hemisphere sustained by the devil. San Nicola holds a lily and an open book on which the following sentence is engraved: 

Praecepta Patris mei servavi et maneo eius in dilectione”. 

The most remarkable piece of art is however the wooden statue of San Giovanni Battista created by Antonio Maragliano and commissioned by the local confraternity, in 1725. Over the years doubts have been raised on the actual author of this statue, but the people from Triora strongly believe it to be Maragliano. A smaller statue of San Giovanni Battista placed in a recess and called ‘San Zane u petitu’ used to be carried to the church of San Giovanni dei Prati, under Monte Ceppo. 

Quite recently the statue of San Dalmazzo, one of the patron saints of Triora, made by Paolo Olivari in 1839 was restored and placed in front of the altar. 

The organ dates back to 1864.

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