Piazza Sauxillanges, 54035 Fosdinovo MS, Italy
This Castle of medieval origins is one of the best preserved in Lunigiana and it played an important role in a feud belonging to the Malaspina family from the fourteenth to the eighteenth century. The construction of the massive fortress merges with the underlying sandstone rock so that the whole structure seems carved out of the earth.
Built for defense, in 1340 the castle was officially ceded by the Noble family of Fosdinovo to the warlord Spinetta Malaspina who created the Marquisate of Fosdinovo and lived in the castle for the rest of his life.
In the sixteenth century, Gabriele and then Lorenzo Malaspina added the Renaissance courtyard while in the seventeenth century, under Jacopo Malaspina, the castle was enlarged. The basic design of the Castle of Fosdinovo consists of a square with four round towers, a semicircular rampart, two internal courtyards, a central courtyard, patrol trenches above the roof, hanging gardens, galleries and an ancient defensive wall. Once protected by a drawbridge, the main gateway enters into a thirteenth century Romanesque style courtyard, which is framed by marble columns supporting overhead arcades. From this small courtyard, where guns were once kept at the ready to defend the castle, a broad flight of stairs rises leading to a large central courtyard.