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Sanvincenti. A lonely place in the countryside of Istria

Sanvincenti. A lonely place in the countryside of Istria

Visiting Istria is how to make a trip back to a past that was Italian, remained clinging to a vacuum. But you can't remain forever clinging to a (cultural) vacuum: therefore, Istria has awakened his rural soul, that was the Slavic, and those of the sea, venetian. Between sea and countryside, the articulation essential: the limited space of cultivable land has pushed over the centuries the peasants toward the Adriatic sea. Trade along the coasts have followed the traces of the most ancient civilization, and the inheritance of Venice - symbolized by the Lion of San Marco that peeping everywhere in Istria - crosses l’inheritance of Balkan world. Less than 30 km from Pula and from the sea, we found this small village, Sanvincenti, of which we were immediately impressed the beautiful square. The Serenissima had confiscated all of these places in 1515.

Svetvinčenat is the Croatian name, Sanvincenti the Italian one. We arrived here in a day strangely cold gray and at the beginning of summer, the last passed. We waited for the end of the rain in a bar-trattoria, taking these short notes.

We travel through an inaccurate cartography, among phantom places it almost doesn't have points cardinals. Sanvincenti is a Locus Solus, a lonely place unearthed at the bottom to wavy campaigns and quiet, that the summer rain transfigures creating views of autumn. The parish church of Annunciation reflects in puddles its facade of the early sixteenth century which seems to exit from the pencil of a child. We have come here to see the renaissance square, one of the most beautiful of Istria.

The rain is exhausted; but not completely ceases. Expect in a bar, surrounded by friendly people that comprise almost all the italian language. Sympathy at first sight, and the Slavic soul is revealed in the popular songs at the radio. View from here, from the deposit of the sadness of these songs, Istria seems to suffer from an infinite widowhood, after removal from Italy. Perhaps exaggerate, and to justify ourselves let us say that here the campaigns are almost more beautiful than ours, most harmonious because less built; and the rurality is still a value. In Sanvincenti in autumn there's the feast of the new wine; not far away, the lavender fields of Pekici remind us that this is a Mediterranean region.

But is the square we love most: the square with the Church, the Municipal Loggia eighteenth-century and the mole of gray stone of the castle, built in the Fourteenth Century by the lords of Pula and renovated in 1589 by the Venetian Marino Grimani. Another element which makes it a pleasant square is the drain of 1808, also this one of the most beautiful in the region. On the square of the castle in 1632 was burned alive a couple accused of witchcraft: probably had a loving relationship with someone of the Grimani family.

As may be seen from’outside, the prospect of the castle Morosini-Grimani is delimited at the sides by two cylindrical towers that make it a perfect scenario for the show. Not by chance, the village hosts in summer festivals of theater, dance and ethno-jazz.

Finished the rain, there's only the singing of the birds to fill the empty.