ITINERARY OF SAINT GEROLAMO HAMLET DOOR
In the document of the XVI and XVII centuries it is said that to enter Palagianello hamlet the so called “door arch” nowadays called the “Clock Door” had to be crossed. When the door is crossed we are in front of an urban titbit. A small hamlet of the Renaissance with houses forming a square in its centre a parish church of Saint Pietro Apostolo and in a strategic and high position there is the Castle. The urban settlement wanted by Domini Roberti in the first half of the XVI century, is due to the intention of repopulating the medieval hamlet which in ancient document was named Palasciano Vecchio. Saint Pietro church is characterized by the simplicity of the faÇade, the stairs and the bell tower. The castle is in a strategic position, a massive quadrangular base with 4 towers on the corners and a central courtyard. It has all the features of a fortification of the XVI century. The monumental tower decorated with the official badge of the Caracciolo Stella of Santeramo’s family is on the southern side while in the origin it was on the western side where there was a drawbridge, over a moat still existent, which passes along the total western side and part of the northern one. The drawbridge was substituted by a stone bridge with two arches when in 1874 the old entryway was closed to build a chapel in honour of the “Virgin of the 7 sorrows”, projected by Gabriele Califano. Actually the chapel owner is Addolorata’s Confraternity. Antico Santuario road, starts from the Castle and arrives after a trail of 240mt in front of Saint Maria delle Grazie church. Alongside the Antico Santuario road we can find some cave houses, an oil press which originally was a rupestrian church and two caves used as palettes. The most important monument is Madonna delle Grazie church, rebuilt in 2000 after the collapse in 1972. Of the old decorations there are only traces of a Virgin with Baby Jesus and a Saint Antonio da Padova dated 1608. Going along a trail where it is possible to look over a rupestrian settlement and down to the rupestrian church of Saint Andrea, we arrive at the rupestrian church of Saint Gerolamo, the biggest rupestrian church of Palagianello where there are frescos of a Virgin with Baby Jesus, a Saint Eremita, Saint Vescovo dated about the first half of the XIV century.