Formigine Castle (Italy)
Emilia-Romagna See list of castles in Italia
The archaeological investigations conducted in the castle from 1998 to 2006, made it possible to shed light on the origins of Formigine. In this place, since the tenth century, there was a church dedicated to St. Bartholomew, with a large space used as a cemetery. Over time, the church became a rallying point for the people of the surrounding lands, until the formation of a settlement. An important stage in the development of this settlement was the fortification of the place, which occurred in 1201, when the City of Modena decided to make control of territory to counter the rival city of Reggio Emilia.
Since the end of '300, the castle came under the control of various local lords: the Adelardi, the Della Rosa, the Este to whom it was stolen by Visconti, and then be granted a fief to Azzo da Castello which followed, from 1405, the Pious. This lordship turned the fort into a castle-residence, giving it the appearance it still has today, with a marquis palace and park inside inserted into a wall, with its four corner towers and a gatehouse.
In 1599 with the death of Mark III, the last descendant of the Pio di Savoia, Formigine back to the Este family who, in 1648, sold it in fief to Calcagnini to which he remained for three centuries.
Restorations, refurbishments and completions style characterize the last two centuries (XIX and XX), which show a clear distinction between public service and elegant feature of the castle.
In April 1945 Formigine was hit hard by the bombing: because of the outbreak of a bomb collapsed the ceiling of the underground of the clock tower, used as a bomb shelter: Twenty people were killed under the rubble, including the owners; miraculously he saved his daughter a few months, the countess Maria Alessandra Gentile Calcagnini d'Este. At the end of the war, the marquis palace was almost completely gutted.
One of the first measures of the municipal administration was the acquisition of the entire complex to fit, once to seek the recovery and reconstruction of the wide severely damaged parts, new town hall.
The intended use is that lasted until 2002, when the Board decided to transfer the municipal offices to proceed with the project of restoration and reuse.
After the restoration completed in 2007, the castle is a place that hosts events and is home of the Museum and Documentation Centre set up with multimedia and interactive installations by Studio Azzurro, Milan center of artistic research, which interact with the direct scientific research by the University Ca 'Foscari of Venice, describing places, people and stories from the past. The park inside the castle looks like a lush green arena where the ancient towers serve as the scenic backdrop and where you can visit the archaeological site that houses the remains of the old church and traces annex medieval cemetery. The rooms of the castle can be rented for corporate events.