Set at the centre of the valley of Cornia, the town of Monteverdi Marittimo is in the province of Pisa. It rises on the Colline Metallifere at 367 m. a.s.l. and it has a population of about 800 inhabitants.

The origin of this small town is strictly connected to the foundation of the monastery-abbey of San Pietro in Palazzuolo that took place in the Early Middle Ages, in 754. The ruins of the structure founded by the Lombard Saint Walfredo can still be visited near the town. Its grandeur and richness can be noticed also in the remains of the church. During the last years, the whole complex has finally become the object of a programme for its recovery and restoration. Also the castle of Monteverdi probably rose before the year 1000, but it was not previous to the abbey.
The stories of the castle and of the monastery, though, have not always been connected. In the XIII century, for instance, the inhabitants of the fortified village annexed to Volterra, while the Benedictines of San Pietro were under the aegis of Massa Marittima. Around the half of the century, also the friars submitted to Volterra just like the inhabitants of Monteverde so that the dominion of Volterra on this area assumed a certain importance.
In 1360, the Pisans assaulted and destroyed the monastery and the Benedictines abandoned it to its fate, which inevitably marked the decline of Monteverdi.
Once it was annexed to Florence in 1431, Monteverdi became a feud of the Incontri, a noble Florentine family. Later, the village became benefited from the Leopoldine reforms implemented in 1776 just like many other towns. With the new territorial organization that Grand Duke had planned and that envisaged the abolition of the feuds as the first thing, the castle of Monteverdi obtained its definitive communal autonomy. The Chapel of the "Santissimo Sacramento", raised in 1751 with the aim to keep San Walfredo's remains, testifies the time of the Lorraine.
Among the precious medieval architectures that can still be visited, the church of Sant'Andrea set in the old centre of Monteverdi is worth being mentioned. Founded in the XIV century, it has a symmetrical fašade decorated with wonderful Della Robbia polychrome ceramics.



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Via S. Pellico, 1
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