Buso dei Briganti
Legendary places are hidden in the landscape of the Euganean Hills
What it is and where it is
Along the route of Mount Cinto, there are many details to admire at various times of the year. One of the most fascinating is undoubtedly the Buso dei Briganti. A rocky conformation of rhyolite and trachyte with short paths over several drops three-quarters of the way up the mountain. It rises on the northern slope towards the Lozzo plateau. From here there is an extraordinary view of the nearby hilltops as well, accompanied by the echo of the many lives that have passed right here among these stones. Why Buso dei Briganti? Well, there are several stories that explain it, and they all have to do with out-of-the-ordinary men.
Why it is special
Little excavation work, a hole in the rock, and a few steps carved out among the boulders hint that in this place good men tried to change their destiny. Each guide has a favorite anecdote, each book tells different stories of one of the bandits. There is the bandit who graces a doctor's wagon, the priest from Torreglia who helps them hide better and acts as a messenger, Stella, the brigand from Montegrotto who was the most fearsome among them. You can even see bowl-shaped holes in the rock, hinting at the preparation of gunpowder.
Not to be missed
Trekking along the Mount Cinto trail surprises on each side of the hill. First the Bomba Quarry museum, then the Dinosaurs along our path, the Riolite quarry suggesting an extraterrestrial atmosphere, ever new plants at every corner and finally this place full of mysterious stories, carried like a whisper by the wind blowing from the caves carved into the slope, between the rocky spurs useful for hiding, and then down into a vertical hole: the gateway to the Briganti refuge.
A bit of history
The hill already in Roman times housed the temple of the god Silvanus. Later, it was the Scaligeri who had one of their castles built on its summit to control the territory, which was later destroyed by Ezzelino da Romano. It was the nineteenth century, however, that handed this hill over to the Brigantes, in a climate of rebellion over control over the territory during the rule of the Habsburgs. In particular, in 1848 Radetzsky instituted the Statutory Judgment to combat it, making it necessary for the rebels to find adequate shelter. Just think: in 1856 alone, about 100 brigands were publicly hanged in Este.
There is a story about a brigand who managed to escape precisely Radetzky's roundups. He found refuge in the Buso with his wife, and remained there all his life. Repentant of his acts, from then on he stole only to give to the poorest and weakest, prayed, and engaged in helping the sick and elderly. At his death, to thank him for his conversion, Mother Nature caused an almond tree to rise on the spot where he expired. It is recognized by a very specific characteristic: it is the first among its fellows to bloom on all the Euganean Hills.
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