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Euganean Legends

The legend of the Blessed Beatrice tells the story, in mythological form, of the life of Beatrice d'Este, a Benedictine nun born in the late twelfth century.
In the early 1200s, Beatrice d'Este came to live in the monastery of Mount Gemola, in Baone, with a few female companions. The site is now generally called Villa Beatrice d'Este in honour of her 'blessed' presence. (PDF download PDF, available only in Italian)

Sirenella is the legend of the mermaid of lake Lispida, one of the two natural geothermal lakes in the Euganean Hills.

The legend tells of the love story between Sirenella and Count Monticelli who, when very sick, found health in the mud pools of the Euganean Hills.

The story celebrates the beneficial properties of the lake's mineral mud, which is still a unique and precious resource today. (PDF Download PDF, available only in Italian)

The legend of Berta tells the tale of a poor peasant woman and empress Bertha, the wife of Henry IV, King of Germany.

The legend has helped spread a popular saying that local people still use to refer to a past that is lost in the mists of time: 'The days when Bertha spun are over.'

This old tale is re-enacted in Montegrotto Terme every year, in the first half of September, with a historical procession in costume and an outdoor performance. (PDF Download PDF, available only in Italian)

Costa lake in Arquà Petrarca has inspired many tales and fables over time, including the legend of the lake of Arquà. This folk legend tells the story of the steaming, sulphurous water of the lake. Palafitte remains have been found near this lake, indicating the antiquity of the site, perhaps one of the oldest in the Euganean Hills. (PDF Download PDF, available only in Italian)

The door to the thieves' buso (or den) is a legend set in the late nineteenth century in a cave on Mount Cinto and inspired by the trachyte spur located near the top of the hill. (PDF Download PDF, available only in Italian)

A strange trachyte rock called Carega del diavolo (the 'devil's chair') has inspired a legend of that name. It is a large chair-shaped boulder surrounded by smaller rocks, located along the road between Calaone and Valle San Giorgio. (PDF Download PDF, available only in Italian)

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