The time: a thousand years ago. The place: the ragged and stunning beauty of the isolated Asiago Plateau, which lies between the Po River and the Southern mountains of the Valsugana Valley. The region will later become part of the Province of Vicenza and a popular and picturesque skiing destination. In summer, modern hikers will delight in meadows of knee-high wildflowers and savor the scent of vanilla orchids and fragrant herbs perfuming the crisp mountain air. But on the dawn of the eleventh century, it lies in the defunct Republic of Venice’s outskirts, remote and sparsely populated.