San Miniato is a medieval town in the province of Pisa, located halfway between Pisa and Florence. Since the Middle Ages, it has been considered strategic because it is situated atop three small hills, where it dominates the lower Arno valley, between the valleys of Egola and Elsa (three rivers that flow in Tuscany). In the Middle Ages, it was already congested because of its position: from one side there were friendly pilgrims passing through along the Via Francigena; from another side, there were armed and hostile people going to fight and defend their hometowns (San Miniato is in the intersection between Pisa, Florence, Lucca and Siena). San Miniato has a long history and was already known by the Etruscans and the Romans. In the XII century, the town was fortified with walls and defensive towers, which are still well preserved today. The town’s layout has remained intact and its medieval appearance is a reminder of the emperors who passed through area (Henry IV, Barbarossa, Frederick II).
This article was written by Serena Puosi