The hermit William from Vercelli when he decided to retire to this place away from everything and everyone simply wanted to return to live the meaning of Christianity in the most profound way.
He had returned to Italy after a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela and wished to go to the Holy Land.
Destiny decided otherwise and stayed on this mountain to pray.
After all, in the 7th century pilgrimages were certainly not simple.
It was not his intention to create a monastery. His reputation as a holiness prompted other people to follow him on the ascetic path and gather around him thus forming the first community of monks.
A few years later, the first church dedicated to the Mother of God was built.