Orezia Castle

On a spur of rock that dominates the Dervio plain, the tower of the Orezia Castle is clearly visible.

Castello di Orezia

It was built in the 14th century to block the Valvarrone road. At that time it played an important strategic link with the Valsassina. Sources report that the Orezia Castle was connected by secret passages, which led to the Corenno Castle and the hamlet of Villa. The fortification around the tower was given by the walls of the surrounding buildings.

Of the original building, today there remains a well preserved tower flanked by the remains of ancient perched houses, which form the village of Castello. Its first mention dates back to 1039, when the castle suffered a long siege by the armies of the Tre Pievi Larians.

Church of San Leonardo

The origin of the name of Orezia is not known, but with this name the town was already mentioned from the 13th century along with the nearby Church of San Leonardo. Of probably more ancient origins, the church of San Leonardo rises in the suggestive rural core of Castello. The structure has been remodeled over the centuries, especially in the sixth and eighteenth centuries. The simple gabled façade presents the portal in serizzo flanked by two rectangular windows and another, above, a serliana. Inside is an apparently sixteenth-century fresco depicting the Madonna with Child. On the main altar there is an altarpiece with the Madonna and Child, S. Leonardo and S. Antonio da Padova. It is a church with a single nave and on the north side it has two old windows now sealed. Below the figures of the Madonna with the Child and San Giovannino, we find the following inscription:

HOC OPVS FECIT FIERI S DOMIN…
PARVTTV… …ABITATOR CASTRI DERVII …
LAUDEM OMNIPOTENTIS DEI EIVSQ…
SI… GENETRICIS VIRGINIS MARIE …
NI…

The place was linked to the Cattaneo family. In 1397 a Giacomo Cattaneo of the late Ser Anselmo ceded various lands and assets to Dervio. Many around the Castle including vineyards and fields with fig trees, willows and chestnut trees and part of a building with a stone roof and a loggia. The neighbors of these properties were all Paruzzi or Cattaneo. Because of its position between the mountains and the plain, in the Statute it is found several times as a border point.

The Tower of the Orezia Castle, recently restored, can now be visited thanks to volunteers.

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