The Museum of Lunigiana Stele Statues is located inside the Piagnaro Castle in Pontremoli and collects the most mysterious evidence of the people who, in ancient times, inhabited the lands of Lunigiana.
Stele Statues are one of the most important manifestations of European megalithic art: these are male and female human figures, depicted in abstract forms and carved in sandstone by peoples who lived between the 4th and 1st millennia BC.
The prehistoric and protohistoric statues have a "rifleman's hat" head and a U-shaped face. Made between the Copper Age and Iron Age, they have come down to us intact through the centuries.
In Lunigiana, along the Magra Valley, 80 types of stele statues have been found over time, divided by archaeologists into three groups according to the weapons or jewelry represented in the stone.
The statues had an ancient cult function and were driven vertically into the ground: on them are carved physical attributes, such as eyes and face, or items of equipment, such as clothing, necklaces, weapons.
The birth of the Museum is due to the passionate activity of Professor Augusto Cesare Ambrosi who, after research in the 1950s and 1960s, created a first archaeological collection in the town of Casola in Lunigiana. He wanted, however, to gather all the steles in one exhibition site: for this, the splendid Piagnaro Castle, located on the hill overlooking the historic center of Pontremoli, was chosen.
Inside the ancient manor is also housed a reception point for pilgrims traveling along the Via Francigena.
Information on accessibility: statuestele.org