188 Route 29. CASTIGL10ME OLOJNA.
About l'/2 M. to the W. of Venegono Superiore, and 51/2 M. to the S.E.
of Várese (comp. p. 183; carr. see p. 185), is Castiglione Olona (1053 ft.;
Albergo Sant' Antonio), on the Olona, with 1900 inhab. and some interesting
works of art. In the main street (Via Vittorio Emanuele Secondo) is the
Casa Castiglioni, the house of Cardinal Branda Castiglioni (d. 1443), a brick
building with a handsome Gothic window and portal. — A few paces off,
at the approach to the collegiate church (Via Cardinal Branca), lies the
Chiesa di Villa or Chiesa del Corpa di Cristo, a large building in the style of
Brunelleschi (p. 470), with an elegant portal and tbe tomb of Guido Castig¬
lioni (d. 1485). The Gothic Collegiate Church, situated high up above
the wooded gorge of the Olona, contains, in the choir, frescoes (inostiy much
injured) painted about 1428 for Cardinal Branda Castiglioni by Masolino of
Florence, the master of Masaccio (p. 537): at the aides of the windows,
scenes from the lives of SS. Stephen and Laurence; on the vaulting, Birth
of Christ, Annunciation, Asaumption of the Virgin, Marriage of the Vir¬
gin, Adoration of the Magi, and Angels playing musical instruments; on
the left is the monument of Card. Branda Castiglioni by Leonurdus Griffus
(1443). The sacristy contains some valuable church-furniture, incl. an
ivory reliquary of the 8th cent. (?). — The sacristán (72-1 fr.) conducís visi¬
tors across the court to the Baptistert , which is also richly adorned with
"Frescoes by Masolino (scenes from the life of John the Baptist; about
1435). Those on the entrance-wall (Ángel appearing to Zacharias) and
on the N. wall (1) are almost cnmpletely destmyed. On the choir-wall:
John preaching Christ as the Messiah; "Baptiam of Christ (the three
figures undressing themselves to the right are interesting indications of
the awakening atudy of the human form); John preaching before Herod;
above, on the vaulting, God the Father between angels. On the S. wall:
John the Baptist in prison; the daughter of Herodias begging the head of
John the Baptist and bearing it to her mother. The rocky cave in the
background contains the saint's tomb; on the vaulting, church fathers.
The train now enters the Varesotto (p. 185), crosses a viaduct,
and reaches (28i/2 M.) Malnate, the junction of the Como-Laveno
line (p. 170). We cross the valley of the Olona by a lofty viaduct.
Beyond a tunnel we cross another ravine.
31i/2 M. Várese (p. 185), the junction of the electric railway
from Milán to Porto Ceresio viá Gallarate (R. 28).
The railway, traversing a tunnel, sweeps round Várese onthe
S. — 33i/2 M. Varese-Casbeno, the station for the Excelsior Hotel
(p. 185). — Farther on there is a view of the Lago di Várese on
the left (p. 186), and the Monte Rosa group in the distance. The
lake comes fully into sight beyond (361/2 M.) Barasso - Comerio
(1320 ft.). — The train then descends to (38V2 M.) Gavirate, near
the N.W. extremity of the Lago di Várese. In the vicinity are
quarries of 'marmo majolica', a kind of marble used for decorative
In the foreground to the left is the Monte Mottarone (p. 201).
41i/2 M. Gemonio (1015 ft.), with numerous villas. Farther on the
Boesio, which- waters the Val Cuvio, is crossed, and beyond (43 M.)
Cittiglio its right bank skirted. The line then leads past the S. base
of the precipitous Sasso di Ferro to —
45l/2 M. Laveno (p. 195), on the E. bank of Lago Maggiore, a
station on the Bellinzona and Genoa line (p. 189) and also a steam-
boat-station. Boat to the Borromean Islands, see p. 196.