The medieval history of Crescentino formally started in 1242 with the construction of the free town by the borough of Vercelli. The place name has older origins however: it is the diminutive of the personal Latin name Crescens. What remains of the medieval memories of the ancient town is its castramentum layout.

The Civic Tower, was built between the end of the XIV and the beginning of the XV centuries. The bell-tower holds the biggest bell in the province of Vercelli: the so-called Crescentina. In the square one may admire the sixteenth century facade of the Parish church of the Blessed Virgin of the Assumptionbuilt in its original form in the XIII century.

Leaving the parish church, along Via Dappiano one arrives at the Confraternity of Saint Bernardino, the oldest of the Crescentine confraternities, documented as early as 1286. In Via De Gregori the Fraternity Church of Saint Michael. In Via San Giuseppe stands the Fraternity Church of Saint Joseph: it was rebuilt between the end of the XVII and the beginning of the XVIII centuries. The outside walls conserve the original bare brick structure. The series of frescoes on the life of Saint Joseph are by Carlo Martini (1860), but the most important paintings are along the wall behind the altar.

Before leaving the town it’s worth making a last stop at the cemetery church of Saint Peter. In Romanesque style, it was built between the XI and XIIcenturies by the Benedictine monks of San Genuario.


In the past this was the oldest Benedictine monastery settlement within the forest plains of Lucedio. The abbey, after first having had another name, was called "San Genuario” following the supposed donation of part of the relics of Saint Genuarius by Lothar I. The Benedictine abbey went into decline with the construction of the nearby abbey at Lucedio. Today only very little remains of the Benedictine monastery. The remaining parts of the structure have been incorporated into the farmstead Cascina Badia, which is located behind the parish church.

At the southern edge of the village there is still the massive bulk of the Castle (which is private property), with its evocative circular tower surrounded by a four-sided building called "rocca” (fortress).

The current parish church is from the 17th century and stands on the site where the oldest and largest abbey stood. The façade, also from the 17th century is very beautiful and the other remains of the building which can be seen from outside are very interesting, including the bell tower and apse and in Romanesque style. The interior is also worth a visit; even though somewhat reworked, it still preserves the original lines of the 12th-century building. The apse and its chapels are a reminder of the monastery architecture. The side altars are very beautiful, but the most notable is the right-hand nave altar because of its 17th-century frontal with its coloured inlays.

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