The Church of Santi Giorgio e Leonardo (Saints George and Leonard) is located in Via Imbriana, Roccabascerana.
A notary’s deed dated from 1548 authorising a marriage to be held in the Church is an indication of the building’s 16th-century origins. The important historic role of the Church of Santi Giorgio e Leonardo is confirmed by the fact that it collected no fewer than 78 lease payments and revenues totalling 153 ducats.
After the Church was destroyed in the 1688 earthquake, it was rebuilt and consecrated by Cardinal Orsini (the future Pope Benedict XIII) in 1694. After a fire in 1929, the Church was then rebuilt again, in 1936, just a few metres away from its original location.
The existing structure has a neo-Gothic façade from which emerge two pointed-arch double lancet windows, a multi-lobed central rose window and a bas-relief depicting the legendary battle between Saint George and the Dragon, symbolising the vanquishing of evil by reason and faith.
The bright, quiet interior is divided by a main nave and two aisles, of which the largest ends in a frescoed semicircular apse. The extremely strong devotion to the great martyr saint is evidenced by the presence of a reliquary, containing part of a finger; according to tradition it came from the martyred body of Saint George, executed for his Christian beliefs on the orders of Emperor Diocletian for whom George served as a legionnaire and then officer.
The Church’s location, just a short distance from the town’s historic centre with its beautiful view of the surrounding landscape, explains why the Church of Saint George and Saint Leonard is a religious symbol for the local community.
Chiesa dei Santi Giorgio e Leonardo
Via Imbriani, 30, 83016 Roccabascerana AV, Italia