La Charterhouse of St. Lawrence, also known as the Certosa di Padula, is the largest and among the most famous certosa in Italy, declared in the 1998 World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
It was founded in 1306 by Tommaso Sanseverino count of Marsico and lord of the Vallo di Diano, under the supervision of the Prior of the Certosa di Trisulti (Frosinone), where there was a pre-existing monastery. Its structure recalls the image of the grill on which the saint to whom it is dedicated was burned alive. The history of the Charterhouse covers a period of approx 450 years.
The pre-eminent part is in style barocco and covers an area of 51.500 square meters for which over 320 rooms. The monastero owns the largest cloister in the world (about 12.000 square meters) and is surrounded by 84 columns. To get to the library of the convent one runs a large one spiral staircase in white marble.
By virtue of the Certosine rule which involves work and contemplation, in the Charterhouse there are different places for their completion: the cloister, the library with the floor covered with ceramics of Vietri on the Sea, the Chapel decorated with precious marbles, the big one kitchen where a legend tells, an omelette of 1.000 eggs was prepared for Charles V, the splendid ones cellars and of fields where an agriculture was practiced aimed both at the sustenance of the monks and at the external sale, with the production of wine, olive oil, fruit and vegetables.
The Charterhouse today hosts the Provincial Archaeological Museum of Western Lucania, where findings from the excavations are collected necropolis of Sala Consilina and Padula, for a period ranging from prehistory to the Hellenistic age.
Viale Certosa, 1, 84034 Padula (SA)
Phone: 0975 77745
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