Churches and places of worship
Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Saint Gottardo Chapel
The church is from the 18th century. The inside has one nave, and a remarkable canvas attributed to the painter Carlo Bononi of Ferrara. A supposedly miraculous wooden statue of St. Gottardo is also kept in the church. The St. Gottardo Chapel is in the Church, in the nave on the right. The church is in the center of Bagnolo, between the town hall square and the Madonna square. A statue of St. Gottardo is over the chapel. It was presumed to be from the 16th century, but a recent cataloguing of the diocese’s property indicates it’s from the 1800s. The saint is depicted standing in bishop’s robes as he holds a book I his left hand. Currently there is no information on the original chapel, but in 1674 the remodeling of the church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary began. The chapel acquired its present appearance during these renovations. The altar is from the 19th century and appears to have been finished by 1860. In the 1960s the renovation of the church included the St. Gottardo Chapel.
Places of interest
A passive U shaped building, it’s the seat of the municipal offices. The building is older than 1840, and it was completely renovated in 1975. (Piazza Marconi 159 – Bagnolo di Po)
Villa Ariosto known as La Barchetta
This villa dates to the 16th century. Its original form followed the Ferrara form of villa. The villas on the Po bank have a main body with two side turrets. This one belonged to the family of the poet Ludovico Ariosto. (Via Arioste – Bagnolo di Po)
The park has a surface of 1.50 hectares. In excellent condition, it was built in 1994 by European contributions. (Via Vallalta sul Tartaro – Bagnolo di Po)
Commonly called Bagnolo, because its territory, in the past it was definitely less hospitable than other towns in Polesine. All Venetian and Este documents mention plenty of water in the area, and the presence of swamps for long portions of the year. Balneum, with its many water pools, is mentioned frequently, especially in relation to the various floods of the rivers Po, Adige, and Tartaro. In the fifteenth century the reclamation implemented by the Bentivoglio family made the first permanent settlements possible. In the nineteenth century dewatering pumps were used to even greater effect.
Since the fourth century, however, this land had begun to develop into small hamlet. In 938 Almerico d’Este Marquis of Mantua and his wife Franca donated it to the church of Adria. In 998 the town was among the possessions of the Bishop Gregory of Ferrara; in 1308 among those ofObizzo III d’Este. Uguccione of Contrarilo received it in 1402 from Obizzo d’Este. In 1478, the Duke Borso d’Este gave a land plot to Francesco Ariosto, Ludovico Ariosto’s uncle. The poet’s father, Captain General of the Polesine Niccolò Ariosto, built a villa called “Barchetta”. In 1506 the estate passed to the Marquis Alfonso Contrari Trotti of Ferrara and in 1560 to the Marquis Cornelio Bentivoglio. In 1597, because of a lack of heirs of the Este family, it became property of the Papal State. In the seventeenth century, Bagnolo was often cited for frequent flooding caused by surrounding rivers. Among these are: in 1647 and 1658 the Po, the Adige in 1677, in 1693 and 1742 the Tartaro, in 1705 the Mincio and the Castagnaro in 1772 and in 1796.
In 1797 the territory passed to the Cisalpine Republic. In under Austrian rule 1815, it was annexed to the Veneto and to the province of Rovigo. Later in 1866 was annexed to the Kingdom of Italy.
The infamous flood of 1951, caused by the route of the Po River, caused the depopulation of the town. Since it was mostly devoted to agriculture, its populace left for more industrialized areas. Today, these lands, freed from water with great sacrifices, repay the efforts of the past with their fertility.
Palio delle Contrade
The “Palio delle Contrade” is held every year, on the first Saturday of September. It’s an event inspired by the Middle Ages, in which five teams, each corresponding to an area of the town competes in various challenges.