villa on the hills of Todi, charming stays in Italy...
The heart of Todi is Piazza del Popolo, formerly central
point of the Roman town, and closed in the Middle Ages by
From the coffee bars enliving the square one can have a panoramic
view of the beautiful rectangular space where are situated
the palaces symbol of the spiritual and civil life of the
The Cathedral, dedicated to the Assumption
of Mary, with
beautiful and original façade, rectangular in shape,
is a Gothic church dating to the early 12th century; in the
14th century the bell-tower was added, than, in the 16th
century, the magnificent central rose-window.
During the Roman period the site on which it stands was occupied
by one of the buildings surrounding the central area of the
Forum, perhaps a temple; the primitive nucleus, represented
by the crypt and the apse, dates back to the 8th century.
The interior is divided into nave and aisles by pillars and
columns decorated with wonderful capitals representing a
syntesis of the last Romanesque forms and the first French
The beautiful choir stalls were carved and inlaid in 1530
by Antonio and Sebastiano Bencivenni da Mercatello, who
made also the panels of the door: these panels, destroyed
17th century, can be considered a starting point for
the tradition of classic furniture created by Filippo Morigi
in the 19th century.
The Palace of the Priors, just
in front of the Cathedral, built in the 14th century, enlarged
and finished in 1334-1337,
with atypical medieval aspect;
in the 15th century was built the tower and hundred years
later the Renaissance windows.
Up on the wall we admire the eagle in bronze made by Giovanni
di Gigliaccio in 1339: symbol of the town, it grasps a pole
with a cloth and, in earlier times, it held in the semi-opened
wings two small eagles representing the vassal towns of Terni
and Amelia. The building had been built to offer a suitable
seat to the Priors - with the workshops at ground level;
then it was occupied by the excise office and later by the
The Mayor's Palace, constructed
at the end of the 13th century in the Italian Gothic style,
has an imposing portico on the
ground level, than the first and second floors with elegant
three-light and four-light windows.
Nowadays it houses the Town Museum, containing Etruscan,
Roman and Medieval finds; pottery, coins, statuettes; interesting
frescoes and valuable paintings of 15th, 16th and 17th
centuries: among the most considerable the "Incoronazione
by Spagna; moreover there are rooms dedicated to antique
cloths, dresses and church vestments.
The Palace of the People, connected
to the former by a large staircase, is a Gothic-Lombard structure
dating back to the
13th century; it was called 'Comune Vecchio'; this building
too is characterized, at ground floor level, by a portico
supported on flattered arches; the façade is adorned
with four-light mullioned windows, and, on the top, a fine
crenellated roofline in Ghibellino style.
There is also a tower-bell, built in 1330, on the top of
which was placed a clock in 1523. First Priors' residence,
in 1236 it housed Pope Gregorio IX, and from the 18th to
the 19th century it was converted into a theatre, La
|A side of this building
faces Garibaldi square, with the monument to this famous personage;
there is also a very tall cypress, planted in 1849 by two Todi
citizens to remind people the coming of Garibaldi, and a wonderful