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Spoleto

Description

Spoleto is a town in the province of Perugia, which lies on the slopes of the hill St. Elias on the border of the Valle Umbra. The territories are crossed by the river Tessino. The town has a typical medieval structure and concentrates in itself an extraordinary mix of artistic styles. The pleasant main centre with its winding alleys and stairs, hosts, each year a very important series of cultural and musical events.
The area was inhabited since ancient times: the first settlement was built by the Umbrians, while in the III century B.C., the area was colonized by the Romans. The latter built the primitive walls and aligned the centre with a typical Roman road plan. Once the Roman Empire fell in the IV century, the town was invaded by the Barbarians in the year 576 and not much later became the capital of the Lombard Duchy. In the VIII century the Franks succeeded the Lombards, while in the XII century, the entire town centre was destroyed by the troops of Frederick Barbarossa. For a long while, the town remained under the control of the Papal States and only in the Middle Ages it started to expand beyond the limits of the original walls, with new small clusters of houses. Once the urban plan was consolidated and after several modifications and additions, today it is possible to appreciate a harmonious succession of elegant Renaissance buildings, the simple lines of the Romanesque structures and several charming medieval corners.

Attractions:
- the Cathedral, built in the late XII century, was altered in the XVII century. It features a superb façade and a Romanesque Bell Tower. Inside are preserved frescoes of the artists Lippi and Pinturicchio, a Madonna of the Carracci and a series of XVI century sculptures. The entire complex is preceded by a portico in Renaissance style;
- the Church of San Domenico, built in the XIII century in two-tone marble. The interior features a Gothic portal with a single nave, decorated with frescoes of the XIV and XV centuries. Inside is preserved a precious XIV century Cross;
- the Church of Sant'Ansano, built in the early Middle Ages and rebuilt in the XVIII century, house the XII century crypt of St. Isaac;
- the XII century Church of San Gregorio Maggiore in Romanesque style with a portico in Renaissance style;
- the XII century Church of St. Euphemia, located in the courtyard of the Archbishop's Palace;
- the XVI century Church of Santa Maria della Manna d'Oro;
- the XIV century Church of St. Nicholas in Gothic style;
- the XIII century Civic Tower of the Town Hall, which is what remains of the original building and now houses the Municipal Art Gallery with important artistic treasures, including a XIV century Cross and a sculpture of the Maddalena, attributed to the Guercino;
- La Rocca (the fortress), whose construction began in 1359 and features a rectangular plan building with six watchtowers and two courtyards;
- the Roman bridge with three arches, of the Augustan age;
- the XIV century Palazzo Ancaiani;
- the XVI century Palazzo Arroni;
- the Arch of Drusus, 23 A.D.;
- the Roman Theater;
- the Roman Arch;
- the City Museum;
- Theatre Melissa.

Map

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