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Le mura di Cascina

The city walls of Cascina

Defense walls built in circa 1200 BC

Map for 43.677856,10.549486
These city walls were constructed around 1200 CE and enclosed the ancient residential centre of the town, defending it in the wars between Pisa and Florence. Due to the use of different materials over time, it is possible to distinguish at least three different building phases by looking at the walls. There were two city gates, the Porta Pisana and the Porta Fiorentina, which were demolished in 1889 to allow for a coastal train which ran from Pisa to Pontedera, but which has been closed down. The historic centre includes the Church of San Giovanni Decollato, frescoed with important works by the artist Luini. Today only a few tracts of the walls are visible, part of the warehouses and factories which grew up in the 1900s for the furniture industry, along with pentagonal towers. The wall was surrounded by a moat with two drawbridges which were later replaced by fixed bridges in brick.
A furniture and high-craftsmanship town
Cascina still conserves it medieval appearance, a period when it was fought over between famous rivals Pisa and Florence. A famous battle over the town is documented in preparatory sketches by Michelangelo, who was meant to turn them into frescoes at Palazzo Vecchio in Florence. Its history, however, dates even further back, to the Romans, who built the town in a typical castrum layout. ...