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Last update 07/08/2014 (ref.130000488)
by the local editorial office of SERRAMAZZONI
Piazza T.Tasso n. 7 - 41028 Serramazzoni (MO)
Tel. 0536 952202 oppure 0536 952199 int 230 - Fax 0536/954665

There are two parts to the village of Varana: Varana itself, now known as Varana Sassi, named after Varus, the Roman owner of the place, and Campodolio, the name of which possibly comes from a kind of grass, “loglio” or rye-grass, which was grown as fodder. Campodolio was mentioned in a letter sent in August, 1573 from the Podesta of Monfestino to Ercole Contrari to inform him that a battle had taken place there between the men of Ligorzano, belonging to the Podesta of Monfestino, fiefdom of the Contrari, and the men of Varana, which, at the time, belonged to the lords Pio di Sassuolo. The two places, located just a few hundred metres from one another, are about 10 kilometres away from Serramazzoni and about 15 from Sassuolo. There are also two churches: one in Varana Sassi, dating to the fourteenth century, dedicated to Saint Peter and Saint Paul; and one in Campodolio, built between 1861 and 1880, dedicated to Madonna delle Grazie. This church holds inside about sixty thanksgivings fixed to its walls and columns - wood and sometimes metal panels, painted by occasional artists who expressed their thanks to the Virgin Mary for having answered their prayers. On all the panels the letters P.G.R. are inscribed, standing for “per grazia ricevuta”, for grace received.
The oldest part of the village is Varana Sassi. The rock, like those at Pompeano and Sassomorello, is serpentine, of undersea volcanic origin. On the largest rock, there was once a fortification with a tower; nowadays it is a popular spot for climbers. At Varana Sassi, thanks to a local group of nature lovers, “L’Ofiolite di Varana”, a botanical garden has been founded, where, with the help of an expert, it is possible to find out about the most important poisonous and medicinal plants of this part of the Apennines.