Key to Umbria: Narni

Blessed Valentine of Narni (feast ?)

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Blessed Valentine was born in Narni in the 14th century.  This article in “La Pagina” (search on “Valentino”) describes a new polyptych that has been painted for San Francesco that depicts Blessed Valentine at the foot of the cross in the scene of the Crucifixion in the predella.  According to the authors, he had given all his property of the this church (presumably when he joined the Franciscan Order).  According to an inscription in San Francesco, Assisi, he had been a “phisicus”(natural philosopher) before he joined the Franciscan Order, but that he decided always to remain a layman (rather than to become ordained, as his education would have normally dictated). 

According to “ De conformitate” by Bartholomew of Pisa, Valentine of Narni died at the Eremo dei Carceri, outside Assisi in 1378, and many miracles occurred at his tomb.  (This hermitage had passed to the new congregation of Observant Franciscans in 1373).  He was buried in the lower church of San Francesco, Assisi, probably in the Cappella di San Valentino, which received this dedication before 1388.  The Blessed Valentine of Narni is depicted in a fresco (ca. 1400) on the pier in this chapel.  (A detail of this fresco is illustrated above).

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