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The treasures of Parugiano di Montemurlo

Millennial history of a complex that has fascinated artists and intellectuals of the first order

Map for 43.925668,11.040384

By Maurizio Nucci

At the foot of Monferrato, between Montemurlo and Bagnolo, there extends a large green area which still bears the marks of the ancient Roman settlement. Proceeding in the direction of Montale, you will notice on the left the great Villa Pazzi al Parugiano already documented before 1000 as a guard tower and then as the court and castle of the Counts Guidi. After the siege of Castruccio Catracani of 1325 the fortifications of Parugiano were destroyed. The Pazzi, a noble Florentine family of ancient lineage, took care to build a turreted house, and transform Parugiano in a large farm. The building has witnessed important historical events such as the route of Montemurlo of 1537 and hosted Suor Maria Maddalena de' Pazzi various times, one of the largest ecstatics of the Roman Church of the seventeenth century, as well as reformer of the Carmelite order. The villa was also the home of Giovanni Girolamo de' Pazzi (1681-1743) founder of the Society Colombaria Fiorentina, who set out to cultivate fellowship through historical studies, philology and science, trying to embrace all the disciplines according to an “encyclopaedic” vision. Among the distinguished owners of the villa there was also Coppedè Adolfo (1871-1951), an artist and architect with an imaginative and exuberant character who was a great patron of the early twentieth century bourgeois. The villa at Parugiano, as it appears today is the result of subsequent interventions that occurred between the sixteenth and the eighteenth centuriess: the sober facade, which does not depart from the canons of Renaissance mansions, overlooking a large garden with plane trees and statues, while the interior and especially the gallery are adorned with furniture and fireplace designed by the Neo-manerist Coppedè. The Villa at Parugiano has a sixteenth-century chapel dedicated to St. Jerome, which preserves the precious frescoes of 1583, made by the great Dutch painter Jan Van Street known as “Lo Stradano”, famous for his work on the beautiful decorations of the Studiolo of Francesco I in Palazzo Vecchio. The painter wanted to represent in the oratory of the Villa Prato various scenes from the Bible and the Gospel. On the entrance wall Stradano painted a view of the Rock of Montemurlo, which over time became one of the best known representations of the landscape at the foot of Monteferrato

Where to sleep and eat 
To stay close to the Villa Parugiano we recommend the B & B Bagnolo located in a strategic position from which you can easily reach the Monteferrato, Val di Bisenzio and the most beautiful art cities of Tuscany. The Bed and Breakfast has a bathroom, heating, air conditioning, TV and latex mattresses and all other amenities, as well as secure parking. 

The Bagnolo offers breakfast service with the possibility of lunch and dinner, with products typical of Prato. In this regard it is recommended to drink the famous Pinot Grigio Bagnolo, intense wine, purple in color, with aromas of fruit such as blackberries and plums, which is grown on the slopes of Monteferrato 

"B & B Bagnolo" 

Via Labriola 174 

50013th Montemurlo Bagnolo 

Ph: +39 0574 654335

Noble villas and the most scenic hills in the Bisenzio Valley
Montemurlo lies halfway between Prato and Pistoia. In recent years the town has experienced industrial and population growth. Not devoid in architectural and natural attractions scattered throughout the nearby countryside as well as in the town, Montemurlo is a town that takes visitors by surprise, unaware of all of its treasures. ...