Camporgiano Fortress

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Camporgiano rises in the high Garfagnana Valley. It can be reached following the motorway A11 Firenze Mare until the exit 'Lucca'. Now you have to drive on the State Road SS12 called 'Of Abetone and Brennero', then the SS435 'Of the Garfagnana' until the town of Castelnuovo. Here you'll find the indication for Camporgiano.

brolio4.jpg (14944 byte)Camporgiano, in the past know with the name of Camporeggiano, counts traces of ancient settlements of the Roman age. Since the first years of the 11th century were the bishops of Luni and Lucca, the marquises Malaspina and the Countess Matilde of Canossa to fight for the control of the zone.

At the time of Castruccio Castracani (Lord of Lucca, 1281-1328) the hegemony on this territory passed in the strong hands of his hometown in order to return object of disputes at his dead: first the Marquise Spinetta from Fivizzano, chief of a branch of the powerful Malaspina family, then the Florentine, that bought it in the year 1341, the Lucchesi in 1377 and again the Florentine, that after the siege of Lucca dominated the territory of Camporgiano until the 1446. In this year the inhabitants chose to pass under the direct control of the marquises Este of Ferrara.

brolio4.jpg (14944 byte)The fortress of Camporgiano dominates the town. It was constructed around the 1300 and in the successive centuries many times enlarged and reconstructed. It has been always the center of the governmental commissioners of the several hegemonies that gained the power on the town, however it never was the main fortification of the area (the most important was the near by Verrucole Castle, you can see it in the photo on the mountain just beyond the Rocca).

It has the shape of a irregular square, equipped with two powerful cylindrical towers to the inner angles, revolts towards the main public square of the suburb, and bastions towards to the external angles. All the perimeter of walls are strongly bastionated and equipped with machicoulis built on beautiful brackets in stone, still intact in more points, even if our days are clear the restoration made with bricks in contrast with the original curtains. The only gate is still endowed with a breteche. The fortress is today a private property and in the inner ward there are no more traces of its original medieval structure.

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