Key to Umbria: Città di Castello

Monuments of Città di Castello

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Images below link to detailed pages on the most important monuments in Città di Castello.

Cimitero Monumentale (1878-99)

The monumental cemetery was largely designed and built by Luigi del Moro.  His associate, Giuseppe Castellucci completed the project in 1897-9 and also designed the present exterior facade (1904-33).

Duomo (1484-1529)

The earlier Duomo of Città di Castello was badly damaged by an earthquake in 1458.  It circular campanile, the lower part of which dates to ca. 1100, survives.  The rebuilding of the church had to wait until Nicolò Vitelli made peace with Pope Sixtus IV in 1484.  Construction was finally completed in 1529, and the church was consecrated  as SS Florido and Amanzio in 1540.   The relics of SS Floridus and Amantius are preserved in the crypt.


This page describes the Ospedali Uniti (illustrated here), which was formed in 1773 from two earlier hospitals:
  1. the Ospedale di Santa Maria della Misericordia; and

  2. the Ospedale di San Florido.

Nunneries (Other) 

The larger nunneries of Città di Castello have individual pages on this site.  The others described on this page are:
  1. three nunneries associated with the Congregation of Blessed Santuccia:

  2. the Monstero delle Santucce (1271)

  3. the Monastero di SS Benedetto ed Egidio, to which the nuns from the Monastero delle Santucce moved in 1410 (illustrated here); and

  4. the Monastero di Santa Margherita (1574), whose nuns moved to the Monastero di SS Benedetto ed Egidio in ca. 1790;

  5. the Monastero delle Giulianelle (13th century); and

  6. the Monastero di S Maria Maddalena (14th century).

Palazzo Bufalini (1571-2) 

This palace, which was has its main facade in in what is now Piazza Andrea Costa and its subsidiary facade (illustrated here) in what is now Piazza Matteotti, belonged to the Bufalini family, originally had its facade.  The Jesuits intended to establish a new college here in 1844, but this came to nothing when they were driven from the city in 1848.  The palace then passed to the Commune.  Its interior loggia, which is now a public space, houses the Tourist Information Office.

Palazzo della Porta (18th century) 

According to tradition, the two columns that flank the main entrance to came from the temple that Pliny the Younger built in Tifernum Tiberinum in the 1st century AD.  The palace  seems to have belonged to the Berioli and the Nostri families, before passing to the della Porta.  It now houses an insurance company, the Assicurazione Zurich di Lelli.

Palazzo Vitelli alla Cannoniera (1521-45)

Alessandro Vitelli built this palace, which was extended in 1531, the time of his marriage to the redoubtable Angela Paola de' Rossi.  It was sometimes referred to as the Palazzo del Giardino, because of its remarkable garden.  The antiquarian Elia Volpi, who bought and restored the palace in 1907, donated it to the Commune in 1912 to provide a new home for what is now the Pinacoteca Comunale.

Other Vitelli Palaces

This page describes a number of other Vitelli palaces in the historic centre:
  1. Palazzo Vitelli in Via Mattonata (16th century), which stands on what was probably the site of the first Vitelli palace;

  2. the palace of Giulio Vitelli (15th century); and

  3. three larger and more imposing palaces:

  4. Palazzo Vitelli in Piazza (late 15th century);

  5. Palazzo Vitelli a Porta San Giacomo (early 16th century), illustrated here; and

  6. Palazzo Vitelli a Porta Sant' Egidio (1535-71).

Pieve di San Crescentino de’ Saddi (11th century)

This ancient parish church originally housed the relics of St Crescentian and the other so-called Martyrs of Saddi.

Pliny’s Tuscan Villa (1st century AD)

This page summarises the description by Pliny the Younger of his villa near Città di Castello and visits the site of excavations on its presumed site on Colle Plinio.  It also describes the fins from the site that are exhibited in the Museo Pliniano, which occupies two floors of Villa Magherini Graziano, at nearby Celalba di San Giustino.

Public Palaces

This page describes:
  1. the Torre Civica (12th century);

  2. Palazzo Comunale or dei Priori (ca. 1322-36), illustrated here); and

  3. Palazzo del Podestà (before 1368).

Sant’ Agostino (13th century, rebuilt 1816)

The first church of Sant’ Agostino was destroyed in the earthquake of  1789.  It had housed (inter alia), Raphael’s Coronation of St Nicholas of Tolentino (1500-1), which was also largely destroyed at this time.  Three fragments survive, the largest of which (illustrated here) is now in the Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte, Naples.  The church was rebuilt on a nearby site in 1816 and is now used by the Salesian nuns of the adjacent Istituto delle Salesiane (see Monastero di Ognisanti - below).

Monastero di Santa Cecilia in Paradiso (1658)

This page describes:
  1. the nunnery of Franciscan tertiaries that was formed in 1658 by the merger of two earlier nunneries:

  2. the Monstero di Santa Cecilia (1422): and

  3. the adjacent Monastero del Paradiso (date); together with

  4. the Monastero di San Giuseppe (1552-5), whose nuns moved to Santa Cecilia del Paradiso in 1815.

The photograph is of the portal of the nuns’ new church of San Giuseppe, which was consecrated in 1746.

Monastero di Santa Chiara delle Murate (1535)

A reformed community of Poor Clares acquired the ancient church of San Giacomo alla Scatorbia here in 1535.  They rebuilt the church and built an adjacent nunnery.  They remained here until 2005. 

San Domenico (1399-1426)

The Dominicans acquired the church of San Pietro di Massa here when they arrived in Città di Castello in ca. 1270.  In the 14th century, they built a new chrch on the adjoining site, was dedicated as Santa Maria della Carita.  Work began on the present, larger church in 1399, and the relics of the Blessed Margherita were translated to its high altar in ca. 1422.  It was consecrated in 1426. 

San Francesco (13th century)

The Franciscans, who had settled outside Città di Castello in ca. 1230, built a new church and convent here towards the end of the century.

Convento di San Giovanni Battista (1473-1529)

The first church here seems to have been begun in 1473 by Raniero Bandini, the abbot of San Benedetto di Scalocchio.  However, the hostilities between the Vitelli family and the papacy impeded the project, and it was incomplete when Bandini died in 1479.  The Obsevant Franciscans from Buonriposo then took it over and built the adjacent convent.  The church was remodelled in the 17th and 18th centuries.  The convent was suppressed in 1810 and again in 1866, but was bought by a Franciscan community in 1894.

Santa Maria di Belvedere (1668-84)

This sanctuary, which is named for its lovely site, was built to house a venerated terracotta statue (13th century) of the Virgin from Santa Maria di Caprano: this statue, which was housed in an ancient church on the site, performed miracles in 1665 that attracted large numbers of pilgrims.  The present sanctuary was restored shortly before 1997, when it was transferred to the Capuchins.  The interior was restored in 2003-7.

Santa Maria delle Grazie (1363-81)

The Servites, who moved here from their original site outside the cityin 1306, rebuilt the original church on the site.  Their new church was consecrated in 1381.  The adjacent Oratorio di Santa Maria delle Grazie (1489) was built to house a venerated Marian image (1456) that is exposed each year during the celebration of the feast of Santa Maria delle Grazie (26th August).  The church was restructured following earthquakes in 1703 and 1789.  The Servites were expelled in 1861 but returned in 1951-62, after which the church became a parish church. 

Monastero di Ognisanti (1310)

The original nunnery here was badly damaged in the earthquake of 1789.  In 1815, Bishop Francesco Antonio Mondelli adapted this complex and the adjacent Convento di Sant’ Agostino at his own expense for the use of  a small community of Salesian nuns  whose school, the Istituto delle Salesiane, still survives.  He is commemorated in this plaque on the exterior of the complex.   The nuns have the use of the adjacent, rebuilt church of Sant‘ Agostino (above). 

San Salvatore di Monte Acuto or Monte Corona (11th century)

According to tradition, St Romuald founded a monastery here in ca. 1008.  In was first documented in 1036.  It was probably an Imperial abbey from 1186 until 1234, when Pope Gregory XI transferred it to the Cistercian Order.  It was granted in commendam to the degli Oddi family in 1452 and then to a series of other families until 1527, when it became the head of what was to become the Congregation of Camaldolese Hermits of Monte Corona.  The abbey was suppressed in 1812-4 and again, this time definitively, 1860.  A community of nuns, the Piccole Sorelle di Betlemme, bought it in 1981, and it is now known as the Monastero di Betlemme Nostra Signora di Monte Corona.

Chiesa della Santissima Trinità (15th century)

This small church belonged to the Confraternita della Santissima Trinità.  The brothers commissioned the Gonfalone della Santissima Trinità (ca. 1503) from Raphael, which is now in the Pinacoteca Comunale.

Santa Veronica (1627-43)


Chiesa del Seminario (1752)

A group of Gesuati that had been established outside the city in 1365 moved here in 1415.  Bishop Giulio Vitelli arranged for the rebuilding of their church of San Girolamo in 1503.  The community was moved to Rome in 1653, and the episcopal seminary was instituted here in 1658.  The relics of St Ventura were translated to the church in 1684.  Bishop Giovanni Battista Lattanzi rebuilt the Chiesa del Seminario in 1752 and dedicated to the Immaculate Conception and SS Floridus and Ventura. 

Other Monuments in the Historic Centre

This page describes the following monuments in the historic centre:
  1. Badia di Petroia (10th century);

  2. Istituto Sacro Cuore (1920);

  3. Sant’ Antonio Abate (14th century);

  4. SS Apollinare e Lucia (15th century);

  5. Santa Barbara (1647);

  6. San Bartolomeo (13th century);

  7. Chiesa di Buon Consiglio (1588-1594);

  8. Santa Caterina (demolished 1942);

  9. San Crescentino di Morra (1420);

  10. Santa Croce (14th century);

  11. Sant’ Egidio (13th century);

  12. San Filippo Neri (1688);

  13. San Giovanni Decollato (date?);

  14. Santa Maria Maggiore (1483-1509), illustrated here;

  15. Santa Maria della Neve (15th century);

  16. Santa Maria Nuova (ca. 1789);

  17. San Michele Arcangelo (18th century);

  18. San Sebastiano (1478);

  19. Santo Spirito (17th century);

  20. Santo Stefano, later Sant’ Illuminato (ca. 1230);

  21. the Teatro degli Illuminati (1666); and

  22. the Terme di Fontecchio (1868).

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