The S. Lodovico Institute is run by the Sisters of the Company of Mary Our Lady, a religious order dedicated to education and instruction, founded in 1607 in Bordeaux by Santa Giovanna de Lestonnac.
Since 1834 the Company has been present in Orvieto where it has educated and trained numerous generations of young people. Today the San Lodovico Institute continues its educational mission through the Kindergarten, welcoming children aged 15 months to six years. The main activity currently carried out by the monastery is tourist reception.
It is also an ideal place for conferences, meetings, Spiritual Exercises, meetings, educational, artistic and cultural activities, study courses or even simply for stays in the name of peace and serenity that can be breathed everywhere.
Church of San Lodovico
The Church of San Lodovico was restored in 1746 and completed in 1778. Inside you can admire a canvas by Andrea di Giovanni from 1440, depicting the Massacre of the Innocents and on the high altar a canvas by Girolamo Nebbia from 1637, depicting the Madonna with the Child and St. Lodovico, bishop of Toulouse, surrounded by a glory of angels.
The monastic complex of San Lodovico is located right in the heart of the historic center of Orvieto, in Piazza Ranieri, and overlooks the historic city walls from which it dominates the entire surrounding valley. The building, imposing and elegant, enjoys a strategic and privileged position, it is in fact located in front of the entrance to the escalators and lifts that lead to the Foro Boario (formerly Campo della Fiera), the largest city parking lot.
The Convent and its history
The ancient monastery is of considerable historical and artistic interest, both for the treasures preserved in it and for the particular position in which it is located. Reconstructing the history of the Franciscan complex of San Lodovico is particularly difficult due to the loss of important historical archives.
Some documentary sources attest to its construction after the second half of 1200, when the mendicant orders settled on the Rupe.
The first official document which speaks of the monastery dates back to 1327: it deals with a request by the Poor Clares nuns to receive an annual alms and a votive candle for the feast of the Saint "capituli et conventus monasterii S. Ludovico de Urbevetere".
The entire complex was built on the remains of a settlement typical of the Etruscan period, as evidenced by the underground caves in which there are caves and wells dug into the tuff. Various religious orders, from 1300 onwards, have inhabited the evocative rooms of the monastery; in 1834 it became the owner of the Order of the Religious of Mary Our Lady.
Today the complex is composed of a two-storey body, to which a new area was added in the nineteenth century. The nursery school classrooms, the gym, the conference rooms and the rooms on the upper floor overlook the characteristic and picturesque internal courtyard.
Here originally were the rooms of the "boarders", but today all the spaces are intended for the reception of those who choose the Monastery as a place of prayer, rest or vacation.
The main floor retains elegant coffered ceilings decorated with gilded friezes in the large hall and in the rooms of the ancient theater. Fourteenth and fifteenth century frescoes embellish the rooms on the ground floor; in the refectory room there is a particular Annunciation where a receding angel is represented, representing the client.
The church of S. Lodovico was completed in 1778. Inside you can admire a canvas by Andrea di Giovanni from 1410, depicting the Massacre of the Innocents and on the high altar a canvas by Girolamo Nebbia from 1637, depicting the Madonna and Child and St. Lodovico, bishop of Toulouse, surrounded by a glory of angels.