The fortress of Gualdo Cattaneo
The fortress is for sure the most important monument of Gualdo Cattaneo.
Its construction started in 1494, it was designed according to the military standards of the time, when the advent of artillery was radically changing the aspect of all defence structures.
The fortress, called “Of Borgia” in honour of Pope Alexander VI, was completed in 1500 and different skilled workers contributed to its construction.
It’s a triangular fortress where each vertex corresponds to a rounded and truncated cone-shaped tower, that communicates with the other ones through underground walkways.
The highest tower has a base with a circumference of 80 metres and a height of 20 metres. It dominates all the village and is made up of 5 floors hosting all the living facilities necessary to defend and reside in the garrison.
The Fortress of Gualdo Cattaneo was the last one of a ‘border’ fortified defensive system, because continuously contested between Spoleto, Todi, Foligno and Perugia, today scattered with towers, manors, fortresses and castles (such as St. Terenziano, Grutti, Torri, Barattano or Cisterna).
In 1624 Galileo Galilei stayed here and wrote “It’s a small compendium of the universe”.