S. Agnese
Community ID
 
620
 
Alternate Names
 
S. Serafia (before 1251); S. Chiara (after 1751)
 
Town
 
Asti
 
Diocese
 
Asti
 
Region
 
Piedmont
 
Medieval Location
 
borgo S. Pietro, close to the walls
 
Modern Location
 
borgo Maria Nova (since 1706)
 
Corporate Status
 
Convent
 
Date Founded
 
1237 (November 10) -- according to Cottineau, dates back as early as 1101
 
Date Terminated
 
1802 -- supressed. In 1810, the order asked the government to give back at least on of the two monasteries, which they reopened under the name of S. Chiara.
 
Religious Order
 
Benedictines until 1243, then Poor Clares (rule of S. Damiano) until 1491
 
Foundation Information
 

Uberto, bishop of Asti, conceded to Alaxina Vengloria and to Elena, daughter of Anselmo Vanga the right to build a church to S. Serafia with a house to live in.

 
Notable Heads
 

Abbesses: Alaxina (also spelled Alasia, Alisia, Aldisia ), first abbess (1237); Alaxia de Taccanis (1354); Anxonia de Scarampi (1405); Fioreta de Malebaglio (1476); Leoneta de Malabaglio (1493)

 
Population Counts
 

1359: 26; 1476: 22; 1493: 23; 1630: 26; 1696: 24; 1816: 13.

 
Incorporated Communities
 

de Gesu, in the 18th c.

 
Other Ecclesiastical Relations
 

Supervised by the Frati Minori di Provincia

 
Visitations
 

10 December 1244: Pope Innocent IV announces a 40-day visitation the the church on the days of S. Agnese, S. Cecilia and S. Caterina.

 
Patrons/Benefactors
 

Agnesina, wife of Merletto Piossaseo, leaves the monastery 100 Soldi on July 5, 1278.

 
Social Characteristics
 

High bourgeiousie: in a list of 1493, several of the members bore the name "Malabaylis" or "Malebaglia."

 
Relative Wealth
 

Wealthy

 
Assets/Property
 

Records show that the monastery had many lands vinyards and houses

 
Charitable/Work
 

Teachers, but in 1696 there were only 2 students.

 
Early Documents
 

(1) 1 March, 1243: Andigra Poru donates the house that she had bought the same day.

(2) 2 March, 1269: a piece of land is given by Giacobina, daughter of Robaldi.

 
Architecture & Archaeology
 

The old monastery was abandoned in 1706 because of war.

 
Manuscript Sources
 

(1): Torino, Archivio di Stato, Inv. delle Scrittura reguardanti lle monache, Asti, Marzo 1

(2) Torino, Archivio di Stato, Asti, Sala 14, Materie Ecclesiastiche Monache, Mat. Eccl. Mon., Chiarisse del convento de S. Agnese per unite alle Chiarisse del monastero del Gesu, 1 de inv. 1243 - XIX.

(3) Torino, Archivio di Stato, Asti, Sala 14, Materie Ecclesiastiche Monache, mat. eccl. mon., Francescane di S. Agnese (delle Chiarisse), 2 de inv., 1243 - XIX.

 
Miscellaneous Information
 

The founders wished to imitate S. Serafina Tortona, but a charter states that members were allowed to drink wine, sleep on straw and have posessions.

 
Manuscripts Produced
 

A 1491 cong. book survives, detailing how the nuns should defend themselves.

 
Contributors
 
Suzanne Wemple-Kinder; Marie Kelleher
 
Date Started
 
1237
 
Date Finished
 
1802
 
Length
 
2105