Chiesa di San Lorenzo

A church named after Saints Lorenzo and Clemente already existed in Alessandria at an age close to the founding of the city. In 1347-1350, the urban church of San Lorenzo was merged with that of Santa Maria della Corte of Castellazzo Bormida, so the religious who officiated the church of Castellazzo settled in Alessandria and the parish church of San Lorenzo was called Collegiata of Santa Maria della Corte. In 1565, the pastoral visit highlights the existence of problems with the building’s structure, so in 1580 the church undergoes partial restoration work. In 1765, the ancient church is reunited with the Collegiata of Santa Maria della Neve, forced to leave the district of Borgoglio following the construction of the Citadel. This union gives rise to the current church. The project is by the architect Giuseppe Domenico Trolli and the works were completed in 1770. The Greek cross plan set on an elliptical base, with a reduction of the number of side altars, and the compression of corner chambers, forced Trolli to adopt the Baroque style. In 1770, the painter Pietro Antonio Pozzo started the pictorial decoration of the interiors, of which Our Lady of the Assumption is recalled in the central vault. The church was finally consecrated by the same Bishop De Rossi on 26 July 1772, with the title of “Insigne Collegiata di Santa Maria della Corte e della Neve, vulgo San Lorenzo”. The attention of the bishop continued, as evidenced by the gift he made of the painting of San Francesco in gloria (1775), still preserved in the Chapel of San Francesco of Sales; until the years of French domination the church was continuously enriched with works of art from Piedmont and Lombardy.