Between 983 and 987, shortly after the expulsion of Buckwheats, two oratories were rebuilt, according to a clunisian chronicler. It is at the end of Xth century that the third vault was built, vaster than the two others, by the hermit Jean Vincent. It even leaned with the rock, it, according to this chronicler, was sacred by the angels, from where the name of Sacred indicating the whole of constructions.
little later the community of Benedictines monks directed by the
abbot Advertus, called upon an architect, perhaps Guillaume de
Volpiano, to conceive a majestic plan for the fourth church, in the
top of three exists.
Between 1015 and 1035, the summit of Pirchiriano is included in the structure of this new church, said of Hugues, of which there remains the Western part, called old chorus.
new church quickly proves too short. The number of monks, the fame of
the monastery, claimed a chorus of vast proportions. (The Abbey is in
the middle of the course which went from the Holy Mount Michel in
Gargano, the destination of a considerable number of frequent visits
and high row.)
The idea of such a construction be probably allocated to the abbot Ermenegaldus who directed the abbey from 1099 to 1130. It was a question of drawing up an enormous base which, being pressed on the last peak of the mount, would join the top, on the level of which could rise the fifth church.
This was done by a sculpture and architecture master, Nicholaus, which thereafter will work in the cathedrals of Pleasure and Ferrare like in the church of San Zeno in Vérone. It is him which carried out the famous door of the zodiac, in top of “the staircase of deaths”, which counts among carved works most beautiful and the most refined first half of the twelfth century.
The fresco of the two legends
is currently placed on the Northern wall of the old chorus, inside the
basilica. It summarizes the legendary history of the foundation of the
sanctuary. Eight episodes are represented:
- Saint Jean Vincent cutting the beams for the construction of a vault dedicated to Saint Michael on the Caprasio mount (high right-hand side)
- Angels and doves transport the beams of Caprasio in Pirchiriano (high center)
- An angel draws Jean Vincent out of a cave and Pirchiriano shows him (high right-hand side)
- The angel leads Jean Vincent in direction of Sacra (center)
it monastery already built surrounded by 3 flames symbolizing the appearance angelica (high left)
it sepulchre near the monastery (left)
- The bishop of Turin Amizzone goes up to Sacra to devote the vault and discovers that was already miraculously made (low right)
The count Hugues leaves Suse for the Sacra in company of his wife Isengarde and a small court (low left)