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Old parish churches in the province

Parma - PR

pieve in Italian means Parish, a word dating to 877 coming from the Latin plebs, meaning both the people united in community and the place where they gather together.

Parish churches were used to impart baptism, bless the women in childbirth, administer the holy oil, impose the penances, receive the burials, promote processions and pilgrimages and were equipped to give shelter to rovers or wanderings.
The main feature of the ancient parish was essentiality: a longitudinal plan with trusses coverage, the side walls and the apsidal area illuminated by few arc windows, strongly splayed from the outside toward the inside.
The simplicity of design is mirrored in the choice of materials: square stones and ashlars.

In the region Emilia Romagna, churches were often built with sandstones, sedimentary rocks with parallel layers of grey-yellowish coloured grain.
Later in time the use of brick was introduced, chromatically enriching the original structure that afterwards becomes further on c0loured with red and white marbles from Verona.

The parish churches are scattered in the lowland , on the hills and on the mountains around Parma.

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