The importance of the abbey churches of Fossanova and Casamari lies in the fact that they are the earliest Cistercian churches in Italy. Around 1100, the Cistercian Order formed as a protest movement against the Benedictine monks living in pomp and splendor. The result was a new monasticism, which was based on poverty, simplicity and a deep, inward religiousness and decisively shaped the culture of the high Middle Ages. Gold, silver, stained glass windows and magnificent murals were banished from the church, the beauty of the simple propagated. The church and the rooms of the two monasteries, each set around a beautiful cloister, give a suggestive impression of the reclusive life of the Cistercian monks, making it an ideal destination for those who love peace and quiet.