Coreglia Antelminelli

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The Fortress

The Penna Bastion

Courtesy of Amministrazione Comunale

Follow the A11 Firenze-Mare until Lucca, exit the town following the indication 'Castelnuovo Garfagnana' or 'Bagni di Lucca' (SS12 del Brennero). Drive for about 20 kilometres until you reach Borgo A Mozzano. (Actually we have two different roads to Borgo A Mozzano: one on the right side of Serchio River, the SS12 del Brennero, and the other one on the left side of the river, the SP Lodovica). Once in Borgo A Mozzano, if you're not already there you have to take the Statale Lodovica (on the left side of the river) and go north. After six kilometres pass the small bridge on the right (indications for Barga and Coreglia) and turn left on SS445. Drive for about 4 kilometres until you reach the Piano di Coreglia; you'll find a crossroad on the right with the Coreglia Antelminelli signal.

» Where is Coreglia Antelminelli located?

Porta a PonteThe only information on Coreglia before the 10th century is related to the church of San Martino.
At the time, Coreglia was a amall hamlet,belonging to the parish of Loppia. The local Bishop, Gherardo,ceded the income from the inhabitants of Coreglia to an ancestor of the Rolandinghi family named Rodilando.

From the very beginning, the fate of Coreglia was tied to the destiny of Lucca and reflects the changing fortunes of that city. Through the Vicaria of San Martino Coreglia was affected not only Politically & economically, but also spiritually.

Porta a PiastriConsidered in mediaeval times a strategic location and although it was provided with considerable fortifications, Coreglia was subject to a long siege and the fierce struggle between the Guelfs and the army of Castruccio Castracani, which brought to the fore the military gifts of the latter. Combining the qualities of a military leader and strategist, Castruccio forcede the Guelfs to surrender, surrounding the Cstello with an army of a thousand infantry and four hundred horsemen specially brought in from Lucca.

He then showed understanding & humanity towards the conquered by not penalising them and even allowing theri captain to return unharmede to his own territory.

Fortress WallsAfter the death of Castruccio, king John of Bosnia, Lord of Lucca, following a petition from the Elders of Coreglia, granded the Vicaria (lordship) to Ciomacco Mugia and to Sante Castracani.

Then, realising the inefficiency of Sante, They successfully petitionede the Emperor Charles IV to replace him Francesco Castracani of the Antelminelli. An ambitious man, Francesco Castracani was unhappy at being an underling, and as a result of being namede to the Vicariato he cospired to become Signore (Feudal Lord) & so appointed himself Count of Coreglia.

Fortress WallsIn 1341 the General Council decided to use military force to punish his excessive ambition and shady dealings by confiscating his castles and those of his allies. Coreglia the fell into the hands of the Florentines, from whom Francesco Castracani retook it in 1352. On 8th May 1355 Francesco finally obtained from the Emperor Charles IV the desired change of the Vicaria into County, whit the right to pass on to his successors the title of Count and all other feudal rights and income.

San Michele Gate & ChurchThe following year Francesco was killed by valeriano and Arrigo, sons of Castruccio Castracani. He was succeeded by his son Niccolao, Who was Signore until 1369, in which year Lucca resored the old Vicarie. Niccolao then left to live in the city of Cagli.

In the first half of the fifteenth century the castle of Coreglia passede into the hands of the Florentines and the through the peace treaty of 28th April 1438, back to tle Republic of Lucca. With the passage of time, Coreglia acquired more & more importance. From being a Vicaria in 1272, it was a County until 1369 and finally the Administrative Headquarters of the Comune of Coreglia in the Diocese and Duchy of Lucca. In 1862 the town added “Antelminelli” to its name, because for a long time it had been the seat thet important family.

In more recent times, no longer the centre of political struggles or of armede incursions between warring factions, it has become a place of peace, work & the art of working in plaster grew in the area. Local craftsmen skilled in the making of plaster figurines imigrated all ove the world from Coreglia, taking their art with them. Many sons of Coreglia have distinguished themselves by theri patriotic fervour and their obvious artistic, political & intellectual talents.

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