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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

—  Comune  —
Comune di Varallo

Coat of arms
Varallo is located in Italy
Location of Varallo in Italy
Coordinates: 45°49′N 8°15′E / 45.817°N 8.25°E / 45.817; 8.25Coordinates: 45°49′N 8°15′E / 45.817°N 8.25°E / 45.817; 8.25
Country Italy
Region Piedmont
Province Vercelli (VC)
Frazioni Arboerio, Balangera, Camasco, Dovesio, Locarno, Morca, Morondo, Parone, Roccapietra, Scopelle, Valmaggia
 - Mayor Gianluca Buonanno (Lega Nord, from 2007-05-27)
 - Total 88.71 km2 (34.3 sq mi)
Elevation 456 m (1,496 ft)
Population (16 December 2005)
 - Total 7,463
 - Density 84.1/km2 (217.9/sq mi)
 - Demonym Varallesi
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 - Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 13019
Dialing code 0163
Patron saint Saint Gaudenzio
Saint day 22 January
Website Official website

Varallo (Piedmontese: Varal), commonly known as Varallo Sesia, is a comune and town of c. 7,400 inhabitants in the province of Vercelli in the Piedmont region of Italy. It is situated in Valsesia, at 450 m above sea-level and some 66 km north-north-west of Vercelli.

Once called Varade, it is divided in two boroughs (Varallo Vecchia and Varallo Nuova) by the Mastallone stream.

In 1971 Varallo was awarded the Golden Medal for Military Value for the deeds of its population against the German occupation in the late states of World War II.

Main sights

Tanzio da Varallo, David and Goliath, c.1625 (Pinacoteca civica, Varallo)
Gaudenzio Ferrari’s statue of the angel Gabriel from the Annunciation tableau in Chapel II of the Sacro Monte

The churches of San Gaudenzio, Santa Maria delle Grazie, and Santa Maria di Loreto, all contain works by Gaudenzio Ferrari, who was born in the neighboring Valduggia.

Museums and galleries include the Pinacoteca Civica (the David and Goliath pictured is by Tanzio da Varallo who was born in the frazione Riale), the Museo Comola in the frazione Camasco, the Museo Scaglia and the Museo di Storia Naturale Calderini.

150 m above the town the Sacro Monte di Varallo is one of the most famous Piedmontese pilgrimage sites, and the oldest of the Sacri Monti of Piedmont and Lombardy which were inscribed by UNESCO in the World Heritage List in 2003. The environs are composed of winding paths leading past forty-five chapel-like enclosures containing groups of life-size painted terra-cotta figures with backgrounds in fresco (by Gaudenzio Ferrari and others). The tableux represent scenes from mainly from the life of Jesus. The array was initiated by a Franciscan, Bernardino Caimi, who aimed to reproduce locally images of the passion as a goal of pilgrims. The main pilgrimage church was built by Pellegrino Tibaldi after 1578. In the works mentioned Ferrari's whole development may be traced.

In the frazione of Arboerio are the old church of SS. Quirico and Giulitta, with a 17th century polyptych and an altar of the Madonna del Rosario, and the Villa Eremo.


This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain.

External links

Varallo Sesia, fall 2005
Varallo Sesia skyline

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

VARALLO SESIA, a town of Piedmont, Italy, in the province of Novara, from which it is 34 m. N.N.W. by rail, situated in the valley of the Sesia, 1480 ft. above sea-level. Pop. (1901) 333 0 (town); 4265 (commune). The churches of S Gaudenzio, S Maria delle Grazie and S Maria di Loreto, all contain works by Gaudenzio Ferrari (1471-1546), who was born in the neighbouring Val Duggia, while the Sacro Monte, a place of pilgrimage rising above the town (1995 ft.), is approached by a path leading past forty-five chapels containing groups of life-size painted terra-cotta figures representing scenes from sacred history, with backgrounds in fresco (by Ferrari and others), to the pilgrimage church built by Pellegrino Tibaldi after 1578. In the works mentioned, as Burckhardt remarks, Ferrari's whole development may be traced.

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