Church of San Martino di Tours


The parish church of Marone overlooks the lake and is preceded by a large churchyard that once descended towards the shore. Dedicated to San Martino bishop, it became a parish seat between 1532 and 1572, with the transfer of the title from San Pietro Apostolo di Pregasso.

The new building replaced an older one that was already defined as too small to contain the entire population in the pastoral visit of 1580. The construction started in 1710, based on a project by the architect Bernardo Fedrighini from Predore, and was extended at least until 1742. The church was consecrated in 1754.

The façade, on two registers, with a mixtilinear crowning and the protruding central part, is marked by pilasters resting on bases. The large half-moon portal houses a large coat of arms; particularly elaborate are the frames of the central window and of the four niches. The front was completed in the years 1927/1928 with the statues of Saints Antonio abate, Carlo Borromeo, Martino and Pantaleone, by the sculptors Luigi Mainetti and Severo Trotta di Marone. The fresco in the lunette by Vittorio Trainini, of which few traces remain, dates back to the same dates.

The current bell tower (1877) replaces an older bell tower, demolished because at the completion of the eighteenth-century building it was lower than the facade.

The exterior is quite simple even if characterized by a mixtilinear articulation in the upper band of the sides, which highlights the internal layout of the chapels. It corresponds to an interior with a single hall, with a barrel vault, six altars, eight niches containing statues of the Fathers of the Church, and a semicircular apse. The decoration was carried out in different periods: the stuccos are mostly from the mid-18th Century and the altars range from the 17th Century (marble altar with twisted columns of the chapel of Sant’Antonio) to the end of the 18th Century (in scagliola, the Virgin, sculptor Martino Pasquelli di Pellio, 1798; the Mysteries of the Rosary are attributable to Sante Cattaneo), to the 19th Century; some were renovated in 1941.

The frescoes on the vault, the holy arch and the presbytery were painted in 1740 by Domenico Voltolini from Brescia and his collaborators. They depict, within precious white and golden stuccoes: St. Martin in glory, Episodes from the life of St. Martin, the Annunciation, the Adoration of the Magi, the Lamentation over the dead Christ, the Assumption, the Expulsion of Heliodorus, and Angels bearing phylacteries and various symbols.

Also by Voltolini are the altarpieces of the Holy Family with the saints Anthony of Padua and Ignazio di Loyola, and of the Exposition of the Cross with saints, martyrs and angels, as well as the small frescoes in stucco frames at the entrance to the chapels, many of which repainted. The large and modest fresco with the Crucifixion in the counter façade is by another hand, also from the 18th Century. In the apse, the dazzling altarpiece with the Immaculate Conception and the saints Martino, Pantaleone, Carlo Borromeo and Antonio abate, within a gilded stucco frame (Giovanni Battista Locatelli, 1800-1802), perhaps partially retouched, was rightly assigned to one of the most interesting painters of the 18th century in Brescia: Giuseppe Tortelli di Chiari.

The marble altar in the main chapel is among the most important works by the Brescia sculptor Antonio Calegari and includes the medallion with the Sacrifice of Isaac (signed and dated 1742), two praying Angels and the two Saints who flank the tabernacle.

Fiorella Frisoni



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