The devil's hat - Gavi
Italy is a country rich in priceless cultural assets, breathtaking landscapes, traditions to be preserved and ... legends.
Almost every village has mysterious and fascinating legends that are handed down as a demonstration of the rich past that preceded us.
In Gavi, which is no exception, there is a suggestive legend that sees as protagonists a mysterious man, the devil and the ancient parish near the so-called "Devil's Hat".
It is said, in fact, that in ancient times a gaviese promised the demon his soul in exchange for great wealth and a church to be built overnight.
The devil naturally accepted the proposal and, when darkness fell, he immediately set to work.
The unwary man, repenting of his actions, fled with his horse to escape from his destiny and came near a church where he stopped.
Unlike his master, the steed continues along the path and reaches Gavi by scratching the flint before the door of the sacristan who, hearing the noise, wakes up and, seeing in the distance the light of the demonic forge and mistaking it for dawn, plays the Hail Mary.
Hearing the bells the devil escaped leaving the church without a bell tower and losing the soul of the gaviese who had invoked him.
During the flight Lucifer, angry at being deceived, sinks into the bowels of the mountain, leaving the imprint of his hat and ear on the rock and depositing under the mountain a part of the treasure destined for the gaviese: a barrel full of gold coins and a hen with seven golden chicks.
It is said that the travelers who passed by the "Devil's Hat" at night could hear the tinkling of coins and the direction of the hen that calls its young.
Like all legends that are respected, this one has also undergone modifications: in some cases, even the building built by the devil is not the ancient church but the church of San Giacomo.
Beyond the variations that have developed over time, the charm of this tradition remains, adding mystery to a monument of great importance that enhances the territory of Gavi.