For Italian Heart’s celebration of Italian villages, here is a post about Bosa, Sardinia region. Enjoy!
The Phoenician name was Bs’n, which simply means “the people of Bosa”, then a collective ethnic name, reported in an epigraph from the IX-VIII century. B. C.
The vineyards of the famous amber-coloured Malvasia wine are the setting for the old town where it is still possible to see old women intent on weaving Bosa filet , using looms to embroider traditional designs. Another traditional activity is the manufacture of gold filigree.
Palms along the river swayed by the wind, a line of low tannery buildings, the river-stone paths of the medieval quarter and moreover, its green nuances, its blue sea, and if you are lucky, the griffins flying around the Castle of Malaspina. This is what you see when you look at Bosa: a strangely fascinating place, uncertain between the river and the sea, of nondescript colours, of strong but introspective feelings, like those who feel deeply-rooted in a culture.
Of Phoenician origin, at the time when the Carthaginian vessels crossed the Mediterranean. Bosa is located on the north-western coast of Sardinia; it is the main town of the agricultural Planargia region.
The Roman town was built along the river, close to (a little further upstream) the Basilica of San Pietro extra muros, now in open country, was built in Romanesque style in 1062, it has a beautiful XIII century façade.
Due to Saracen pirate raids the old village was abandoned and a new settlement – the one you can see today – was built around the Castle of the Malaspina, a military fortress built in 1112, with the Church of Regnos Altos in which XIV century Italian-Provençal frescoes are preserved.
The medieval village developed around the hill dominated by the castle, in correspondence with the Sa Costa quarter, it is characterized by a network of alleys that follow the contour of the hill each linked to the other by trachyte staircases, on which the houses wind, in an apparent disorderly and spontaneous architecture, combining very simple houses and valuable buildings in an urban mix which is one of the most original in Sardinia.
People who live here are patient, engaging in embroidery and gold filigree, activities which require old-fashioned gestures: the same gestures made by women when weaving wires ritually, in order to avoid the dangers faced by their men at sea.
The ”living room” of the village is Sa Piatta, the main street, corso Vittorio Emanuele where, near Ponte Vecchio, you can find the Cathedral of the Immaculate dating back to the fifteenth century and rebuilt in the XIX century. Leaving Sa Piatta you come across the Church of the Rosary topped by a two-faced clock from 1875, the lower part of the façade is made of red trachyte, and a small square with a marble fountain, surrounded by the arches of Palazzo Delitala (XVIII century) and Palace Don Carlo (XIX century).
Another interesting place is the Church of Carmine with its Convent, which then became the Town Hall, built in 1779 in typical Piemonte Baroque style, because in 1720 the region was governed by the House of Savoy.
Going towards the sea, on the opposite side of the river, in front of the medieval village of Sa Costa, is the tannery district of Sas Conzas, an architectural area from the nineteenth century. Today the Bosa Tanneries are a national monument, a splendid example of industrial archaeology.
Once in Bosa Marina, you must visit the Church of Stella Maris, completed in 1689 by merging Catalan-Gothic elements and Renaissance forms, and the great Aragonese Tower of Isola Rossa, which overlooks the wide beach, it is a good example of military architecture from the sixteenth century.
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