Triora is a picturesque village in a lovely setting of wooded valleys well into the Ligurian hills of north-west Italy. Triora is officially classified among the most beautiful villages in Italy.
The centuries-old village of Triora is at the foot of the Trono Mountain, overlooking the Argentina valley, where it preserves almost intact its medieval appearance. In the heart of the village you will enjoy exploring the ancient alleys, arched passages and steep pathways of what is claimed to be one of the oldest villages in Liguria.
Triora was strongly marked by the events arising from the witchcraft trial that involved many women of the village. In the small town center the Ethnographic Museum of Witchcraft has been set up to reconstruct the ancient rural life and the records of the famous trial of 1588, still much discussed by writers and critics, and immortalizing the memory of an event that has been likened in importance to the famous Salem witch trials.
The Collegiate Church of Triora, dating from the 16th century, was extensively renovated in the late18th century. Inside there are remarkable works of art, among which a painting on wood by the Sienese painter Taddeo di Bartolo (1362-1422) stands out - he was active in Liguria towards the end of the 14th century, and in 1397 painted a grand picture of “The Baptism of Christ' for the Collegiate Church.
Close to the Parish Church is the Chapel of Saint John the Baptist. In this small chapel there are sculptures by Anton Maria Maragliano (1664-1741), the creator of a beautiful wooden crucifix, and other works by Taddeo di Bartolo. Anton Maria Maragliano enjoyed wide respect and esteem by eminent men of his time.References:
The Broch of Gurness is an Iron Age broch village. Settlement here began sometime between 500 and 200 BC. At the centre of the settlement is a stone tower or broch, which once probably reached a height of around 10 metres. Its interior is divided into sections by upright slabs. The tower features two skins of drystone walls, with stone-floored galleries in between. These are accessed by steps. Stone ledges suggest that there was once an upper storey with a timber floor. The roof would have been thatched, surrounded by a wall walk linked by stairs to the ground floor. The broch features two hearths and a subterranean stone cistern with steps leading down into it. It is thought to have some religious significance, relating to an Iron Age cult of the underground.
The remains of the central tower are up to 3.6 metres high, and the stone walls are up to 4.1 metres thick. The tower was likely inhabited by the principal family or clan of the area but also served as a last resort for the village in case of an attack.
The broch continued to be inhabited while it began to collapse and the original structures were altered. The cistern was filled in and the interior was repartitioned. The ruin visible today reflects this secondary phase of the broch's use.
The site is surrounded by three ditches cut out of the rock with stone ramparts, encircling an area of around 45 metres diameter. The remains of numerous small stone dwellings with small yards and sheds can be found between the inner ditch and the tower. These were built after the tower, but were a part of the settlement's initial conception. A 'main street' connects the outer entrance to the broch. The settlement is the best-preserved of all broch villages.
Pieces of a Roman amphora dating to before 60 AD were found here, lending weight to the record that a 'King of Orkney' submitted to Emperor Claudius at Colchester in 43 AD.
At some point after 100 AD the broch was abandoned and the ditches filled in. It is thought that settlement at the broch continued into the 5th century AD, the period known as Pictish times. By that time the broch was not used anymore and some of its stones were reused to build smaller dwellings on top of the earlier buildings. Until about the 8th century, the site was just a single farmstead.
In the 9th century, a Norse woman was buried at the site in a stone-lined grave with two bronze brooches and a sickle and knife made from iron. Other finds suggest that Norse men were buried here too.