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The legend of the Patron of Alessandria 
San BAUDOLINO

Born in Villa del Foro, the “romantic” centre near Alessandria, from a noble and rich family, Baudolino lived his life in a very simple and austere way since he was young and, after his parents’ death, gave everything to the poor in order to live in loneliness and meditation in the thick woods around there.
Really soon the people from Villa del Foro considered him as a Saint for the miraculous recoveries, and his fame spread. One day, while the king Liutprando was hunting near Marengo, a locality which became famous for Napoleon, a clumsy courtier of his, shooting an arrow at a deer, seriously hurt Ansulfo, the king’s nephew. The desperate monarch immediately called Baudolino, who even before hearing what the Royal messengers should say to him, said that any intervention of his would be unuseful, as Ansulfo had already died. Got back to Marengo, the king’s envoys learnt that Baudolino told the truth.
The popular fantasy attributed to Baudolino another miracle. A great amount of wild geese (or ducks), introduced in the fields of Villa del Foro, threatened to destroy the products of the land. The inhabitants, after trying to send away that calamity with any means, called the hermit in order to help them, and just a simple action was needed to make the troublesome birds go away.
In 740 when Baudolino died, according to the tradition, he was buried in Villa del Foro. After the foundation of Alessandria, he was proclaimed Patron of the town and a church was built up to honour him. In fact his mortal remains have been transported there around the year 1180.