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  The land that from Moggio leads to Tarvisio following the valley of River Fella and its tributaries and the valley of Torrent Gailitz whose waters, after flowing through Tarvisio, flow into the River Gail and finally into the Black Sea, is a land boasting centuries of history, culture and art, a land already well known to the Romans, who had created here a trading route towards the north, leaving important traces of their presence in Pontebba, Camporosso, Tarvisio. For centuries, Pontebba marked the boundary between the Republic of Venice and the Austrian Empire: this side the populations of Italian language and culture, that side the German and Slav populations. Such linguistic plurality, not forgetting the ancient Slav language spoken in Val di Resia, is still a feature today, so that in Tarvisio people normally speak Italian, Friulian, German and Slovene. It is not surprising, therefore, that Pontebba preserves two artistic masterpieces as the spectacular Flügelaltar dated 1517 carved, painted and richly gilded by a sculptor’s studio in Villach, and an altarpiece dated 1616 by Palma the Younger, the prolific painter from Veneto operating between the 1500s and the 1600s. It is not surprising either that the small church of Coccau contains 14thcentury frescoes by an Austrian master who deeply felt Giotto’s influence. The most ancient Abbey of San Gallo at Moggio, a cultural centre in the Middle Ages, and the Sanctuary of Monte Lussari (Maria Luschari, Svete Visarje) venerated by populations from Slovenia, Kärnten and Friuli, are the evidence, as well as many other sacred places, of the spirituality of the local populations. And the same spirituality is also felt in the contact with the surrounding natural environment, offering its most touching aspects in the sublime mountainous landscapes, in the thick vegetation of forests and in the clear waters of torrents.

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Images from Friuli Venezia Giulia