The ancient Selvarese among woods, castles and battles
Cervarese Santa Croce boasts remote origins. This locality, arisen between wide woods and main waterways, has got a long story to tell as well as many architectural and natural beauties to show.
Certainly, the ancient Selvarese (whose toponym originates from the primitive wooded state of the territory) was already inhabited in Roman times. It has then epitomized a strategic center for centuries, marking the boundary between Padua and Vicenza and controlling traffic on the river Bacchiglione.
In the past its richness was based on trade in timber and trachyte, extracted from the nearby hills, but also on the installation of mills on waterways. Currently, the economy is mainly based on numerous furrier’s laboratories.
The municipality is split into hamlets: the most important are Fossona, the Town Council seat, and Montemerlo, which is located within the boundaries of the Euganean Hills Regional Park.
Within the territory of Cervarese Santa Croce there are several sights worth visiting. Above all, the medieval castle of San Martino whose massive tower was erected in Lombard age; the fort was later extended by the Da Carrara, being the scene of many armed fights against Vicenza and Verona people, and later became an important river port during the Venetian age.
It’s furthermore crucial to take into account three very ancient churches, built at strategic points in the area by the early Christians to celebrate their cult: the church of Santa Croce, located on the right bank of the Bacchiglione, Santa Maria, on the left bank, and San Martino, near the homonymous castle.
Another architectural evidence of the notable historical past of Cervarese Santa Croce is Villa Trento: a luxurious sixteenth-century villa, whose monumental façade is inspired by the unmatched style of the famous architect of that time, Palladio.
It is also worth visiting the Palazzo della Francesca that, according to the tradition, sprang on the ruins of the ancient castle of Motta, and Villa Serenella, which stands out on top of a small hill as a jewel of the neo-Gothic style.