Church of St. Anna a Chiareggio


Today's parish church in Torre di S. Maria, dedicated to Santa Maria Nascente, rises on the ruins of a smaller, pre-existing, late mediaeval church, built in the early fifteenth century and consecrated in 1415. One wall reamins of this ancient church now part of the current wall alonside the right-hand wall leding to the sacristy, on which are clearly visible although very faded three portraits of the faces of Madonna and two Saints and a wall of the sacrity where a freso clearly depicts a bishop, a group of angels and a woman's face.

The church was almost completely rebuilt in 1620 and lengthened in 1919. It stands on a vast embankment with a beautiful square in front overlooking the valley. Opposite the façade is a little chapel with a fresco of the Deposition, painted in 1839 by Giacomo Brazzi and a column topped by an iron cross, erected in 1765.

The church façde was rebuilt when the building was enlarged: the central niche holds a statue of the Madonna. Th cornice level is divided into four pilasters. The upper one has a central window surmounted by a cartouche and two side niches which hold the statues of St. Peter and St. Paul.

The lowpart has the portal in the centre with carved wood panels, dated 1683.

The spacious interior has two chapels on each side. The vaulted ceiling has three medallions by Giovanni Gavazzeni depicting the l’Assumption, the Nativity and the VeVirgin Mary, whereas on the vault of the presbytery the same artist painted theAssumption of the Virgin, the Four Evangelists, theAnnunciation and the Holy Family.

On the left-hand wall hangs a canvas in an elegant Renaissance frame, depicitng theAdoration of GBaby Jesus by the Virgin Mary and the saints Gottardo, Giacomo, Filippo and Rocco, which can perhaps be ascribed to Andrea de Passeris (1530). The second chapel on the left has a richly decorated ancon on the altar in the shape of a portal with two columns: in the centre stands a statue of the Madonna. On each side of the entrance to the chapel there are two gilded and painted wooden angels (18th century). We then find the carved wooden pulpit placed on top of a confessional (18th century).

Of note in the presbytery is the precious marble high altar, the marble ciborium with little columns and pillars and withb a tiny statue of Christ. The carved wooden choir stalls stand against the side walls (17th century).

The second chapel on the right is decorated with stuccos and has a niche with a modern statue of Sant’Antonio. On the right-hand wall between oval cornices are three saints' heads, probably fragments of frescoes destroyed during the work to extend the church (16th century).

The sacristy houses carved wood furniture (17th and 18th centuries) and numerous silver fittings. The paraments include a remarkable, embroidered, silk banner, purchased in Milan in 1796 by some of the village inhabitants.


  • Dario Benetti – Fabrizio Ceriani, Il Quattrocento dimenticato di Torre, in “Quaderni Valtellinesi”, no. 12 (1984)
  • Gianasso Mario (a cura di), Guida turistica della provincia di Sondrio, II edizione, Sondrio 2000, pp. 200-201
  • Palazzi Trivelli Francesco, Un’ancona di Andrea de Passeris in Valmalenco, in “Bollettino della Società Storica Valtellinese”, n. 50 (1997), pp. 117-119