and the surrounding area

Situated halfway between Florence and Siena, the territory of Greve in Chianti (eighth Italian town by extension) is a true and own history and concentrate of the landscape of Tuscany.

The signs of human presence tell a very old relationship between people and their land, from the Etruscan period onwards, through the Roman colonization of the medieval churches and castles, until the current image marked by viticulture, crafts and a high quality of life.

This movie presents itself as a small vedemecum for the discerning traveler and curious, willing to grasp the most typical of the Chianti area.

Chianti e dintorni

Situato a metà tra Firenze e Siena, il territorio di Greve in Chianti (ottavo comune italiano per estensione) rappresenta un vero e propio concentrato della storia e del paesaggio della Toscana.

I segni della presenza umana raccontano un rapporto antichissimo fra gli abitanti e la loro terra, dall'epoca etrusca in poi, passando per la colonizzazione romana, il Medioevo delle pievi e dei castelli, fino all'immagine attuale segnata dalla viticultura, dall'artigianato e da una elevata qualità della vita.

Questo filmato si propone come un piccolo vedemecum per il viaggiatore attento e curioso, intenzionato a cogliere gli aspetti più tipici del territorio chiantigiano

Story of the community of Greve

Greve in Chianti District in the province of Florence; post code: 50022; main town: Greve; height: 231 m (above sea level) Inhabitants: 12.500; information: Tourist Office tel./fax 055/8546287; nearest railway station: Florence (25 km); main road from Florence (35 km) and from Siena (32 km): state road n. 222 Chiantigiana.

The geographical position and orography of the Greve area, which extends from north to south on one of the several roads connecting Florence and Siena and spreads down from the hills of Florence to the Chianti mountains (San Michele 892 mt), has influenced its historical events and its anthropological landscape. Many archaeological findings of Etruscan and Roman origin (Panzano, Canonica, Casole, Citille and Lucolena) and a large number of latin place-names (Barbiano, Casignano, Citille, Dimezzano, Mugnana, Rignana, Rubbiana, Verrazzano, Vitiglianao) attest to an old human installation. Perhaps centres of the oldest civilizations are to be found in the several Medioeval pievi (San Cresci, San Leonino, Sillano, Cintoia, Rubbiana) especially if we consider that the importance and the continuity of sacred places has been proven on many occasions in Tuscan tradition. As these pievi are still part of the diocese of Fiesole we can suppose that their corresponding areas were under the authority of Fiesole during the Roman age. The above mentioned pievi maintain significant traces of their old Romanesque structures and their presence help define the character of the landscape, although in some cases this character has been deeply altered by renovations during the years (San Leonino). The same can be said with regard to the little churches linked to the pievi which arose in the area thanks to the economic development and the demographic growth of the XI, XII, and XIII centuries. During the Middle Ages the area, although under the ecclesiastic power of Fiesole, was administered by Florence and consequently divided into leagues in the XIV century: the league of Greve valley and the league of Cintoia gathering forty peoples* together who were later reunited in the podesteria of Greve valley which was part of the vicariato of San Giovanni Valdarno. During the Leopold age the territory took its actual shape and was united with Cintoia. The French domination and the Restoration brought the last changes. The structure of Panzano and Montefioralle with their big keeps and enclosure walls testify to the old noble ori gin of two important and developed towns. Sezzate and Lamole which maintain only some traces of their enclosure walls had a more restricted urban expansion. The "beautiful tower of Vicchiomaggio testifies to its ori gin as fortress which was later transformed into a villa as was Uzzano. Other castles maintain only parts of their defensive structure (Cintoia) and have become small rural villages (Luco lena, Dudda, Citille, Collegalle, Convertoie, Rignana, Torsoli, Linari). Montagliari and Le Stinche instead have completely disappeared while Rubbiana changed its function into Mercatale. Of the same ori gin is Greve, which grew up at the valley bottom as market place of the several castles of the area (Panzano, Montefioralle, Uzzano, Lamole). The village of Greve, part of the plebato of San Cresci, developed and became one of the most important centres of the surroundings thanks to its position at the intersection of two important routes: the road crossing the Greve valley (the significant connection between Siena and Florence during the centuries) and a side- road which, coming from Passignano through Montefioralle, Sugame and Ponte agli Stolli, connected the Pesa valley - and consequentely the EIsa valley crossed by the Francigena way - to the upper Arno valley thereby joining Roman roads and market places. Another route of importance was the road which ran on the crest of the Pesa valley through Panzano, San Martino in Cecione (where there was a religious community) Ercole and Sillano and descending to Mercatale and San Casciano to arriv in Montelupo. Other roads coming from the upper Arno valley crossed the territory of Greve close to the Ema basin: one departed from Ponte agli Stolli and through Cintoia heading towards Strada in Chianti; the other one crossed Poggio alla Croce and through Rubbiana and carried on to Grassina along the river. According to tradition thesewere variants of the recent lay-out of the Cassia road called Cassia

Since the Middle Ages the sharecropping system shaped the landscape with its mixed cultivations and its farmhouses. Most of them were old mansions which were duly transformed and fit to the new rurai purposes (Il Palagio, Feliciano, Le Bartoline, Ramoli, Colognole and Verrazzano). The resulting transformations into villas can be observed in Uzzano, Vicchiomaggio, Vitigliano and Verrazzano which are beautifui examples worthy ofthe best FIorentine Iandhouse tradition. *A list of the XlV century indicated the following peoples: League of Greve Valley: Santa Croce a Greve, Santa Lucia a Barbiana, San Martino in Cecione, San Donato a Citille, Santo Stefano a Collegalli, San Donato a Lamole, Santo Stefano a Lucolena, San Leo a Mezzano, San Cresci a Mezzola, San Niccolo a Montagliari, Santo Stefano a Montefioralle, Sant'Andrea a Montegonzi, San Leonino and Santa Maria a Panzano, Santa Maria a Petriolo, San Piero al Pino, Santa Maria a Rignana, San Silvestro a Ripomontorio(Le Convertoie), San Pietro a Sillano, San Pietro alle Stinche, San Godenzo a Torsoli, San Martino a Uzzano, San Martino a Valle, Santa Maria a Vicchiornaggio; League of Cintoia: Santa Maria a Cintoia, San Pietro a Cintoia, Santa Lucia a Bisticci, Sant'Angelo a Dudda, San Paolo a Ema, Sant'Angidrea a Linari, San Cristofano a Lucolena, San Donato a Mugnana, San Bartolomeo a Musignano, Santa Cristina a Pancole, San Clemente a Panzalla, Sant'Ellero a Petigliolo, San Giorgio in Poneta, San Miniato a Rubbiana, San Michele a Rugliana, San Martino a Saezzate, San Cristofano a Strada. Tradition continues into the New Millennium. This piece of earth represents anice destination and residential place for travellers coming from everywhere thanks to its position (midway between Florence and Siena), its famous wines and its healthy climate. Besides its landscape such small territory offers its visitors a rich heritage of history and art. Castles, medievai towns and small country Romanesque churches are an attraction for travellers as well as gastronomy, handicrafts and in recent years agritourism. Enviromental archaeological and historical aspects . The central square, Piazza Matteotti, with the monument to the famous navigator Giovanni da Verrazzano, has been characterized by terraced porticos, market and meeting places for many centuries. Its wine stores and craftwork shops represent an attraction as do its restaurants where visitors can taste the most delicious Chianti specialities. The recent inauguration of the monument to the Black Rooster - the symbol of the Chianti area for 75 years- by Bino Bini has increased the prestige of Greve in Chianti. Worth visiting is the church of Santa Croce which houses the works of Maestro da Greve, a triptych of Bicci di Lorenzo and a ciborium attributed to Andrea della Robbia as well as the Oratory of Saint Francis (recently restored to create a museum of "arte sacra" with an interesting robbiana. Montefioralle is a picturesque medieval village and its church of Santo Stefano preserves valuable paintings. The natural park of San Michele situated on the crest of the Chianti mountains (892 mt. above sea level) offers nice excursions into the woods and beautiful panoramic views of the Chianti area."

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Il tracciato della Chiantigiana
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