AMO ITALY Travel Guide

Italy Travel Guide, About Italy Tourism & Tourist Information


About Assisi


As seen in many of central Italy, also Assisi is one of the towns located on the hill of olive groves. Assisi is a Holy Place of Saint Francis (San Francesco), the patron saint of the Italian nation. He is known as a saint of poverty and called the second Christ. This town had become a place of pilgrimage for not only Italians but also Catholics from all over the world.

Francis was born in a wealthy family of a cloth merchant in Assisi at the end of the 12th century. It's said that since his father was fluent in French for work, his name "Francesco" meaning France in Italian was given.

When he was young he sent a life of debauchery as a son of a wealthy merchant and entered in the knights army dreaming an honor. However he became sick and caught in a prison for a short time. That was the first frustration and suffering in his life. At the age of 20, he became religious and started a life as a hermit, repairing a destroyed church. One day he heard the voice of Christ "Go rebuild my house" in the church of San Damiano. Francis threw all his possessions for religion. In 1208 he defined the three precepts of Commandments: Obedience, Poverty, and Chastity. Then he continued preaching on his philosophy to people wandering all around with his disciples.

In 1210 Pope Innocent III granted an audience to St. Francis and permitted the Establishment of the Franciscan order. The legend says that at the same night of the audience, Pope dreamed Saint Francis was supporting the leaning Laterano cathedral, and the day after he nominated the monastic order of Francis. It's said that in later life Saint Francis received several stigmata just like those of Jesus, in the hands, feet and side limbs.

The great works of Giotto were dedicated to St. Francis. As you can see through those paintings like "St. Francis Preaching to the Birds" and "Canticle of the Sun (Cantico delle creature)", St. Francis is a symple saint integrated with the natural world and loved by numerous people of all over the world. He lived strictly according to his own constitution obedience, poverty and chastity.