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.