The central Italian town of Città della Pieve is situated on a hill to the west of the Umbria region of central Italy and near the border with Tuscany.
There are several important monuments in Città della Pieve, many dating from the 13th to 17th centuries, and you will also become aware of the artist called Perugino (1450 - 1523) to the art works of the city as you explore.
Your city tour can start from the Cathedral of Citta Della Pieve, built in the 9th-10th centuries and which contains many works of art.
Although many artists are represented the most important attraction of the cathedral is the work of Perugino, whose style came from the school of Verrocchio, with inspiration from the art of Antonio Pollaiuolo, Botticelli, Leonardo and Piero della Francesca.
In the cathedral you can see an altarpiece by Perugino, dedicated to the Saints Gervasio and Protasio that depicts the “Virgin and Child”, flanked by the patron saints of the city and concluded in 1514.
In the Chapel of the Cathedral there is another important work by Perugino, "The Baptism of Christ" (painted early 16th century), which art critics consider to be an imitation of the composition created by the painter for the Sistine Chapel in Rome, painted during his stay in Rome.
Next to the Cathedral is the 12th century Tower of the Public. On the same square you can also see the Palace of Corgna, built by Ascanio della Corgna (1514-1571). This palace is attributed to Galeazzo Alessi (1512-1572), and inside there are some painted by Cristoforo Roncalli, known as the 'Pomarancio' (1553-1626), and Salvio Savini (1580-1609).
Another great city building in Città della Pieve is the Bandini Palace, a complex in brick that dates from the 14th century (renovated in the 16th century), while yet another important monument is the Baroque style Palace of Fargna, which contains some fine stucco work.
Perugino worked in various other churches in the city, often leaving masterpieces that are worth seeing. We suggest a visit to the Church of San Pietro near the gate of the Castello ‘terziere’ to see the painting 'St. Anthony Abbot and Saint Marcello and Paul'.
In 1504 the 'Order of the Disciplinati' of the 'Compagnia dei Bianchi' requested that Perugino paint a fresco on the altar wall of their oratory. The fresco ("The Adoration of the Magi") was completed in the same year with considerable technical expertise.
Outside the walls you can visit the Church of St. Augustine, Church of St. Francis, the shrine of Our Lady of Fatima, and, above all, the Church of Santa Maria dei Servi, with yet another fresco by Perugino, representing the "Descent from the Cross."
The layout of Citta della Pieve was completed around the 13th century and has been preserved almost intact over the centuries. The town plan has important and interesting symbolic meanings - in fact it looks like an eagle, the symbol of Emperor Frederick II, who died in 1250. Of course, this is less clear from ground level!
The construction of Citta della Pieve was completed before the death of the Emperor, and scholars believe that the layout was demanded by Frederick II, who wanted to impose his coat of arms on the town in this way.
Interestingly this 'symbolism' of Città della Pieve carries on with its division into "terzieri" (the three parts into which the city is divided, called Borgo Dentro, Casalino and Castello), which symbolically represent the social classes of the city. The "terziere" of the head of the eagle, called "Castello", was for the knights; the one on the belly called the “Borgo Dentro” (Inner Village) symbolizes the bourgeoisie, while the third, on the tail of the eagle (Casalino) symbolizes the popular classes.
The surroundings of Città della Pieve are characterized by the hills of Umbria and Tuscany and are a landscape worthy of being explored, ideally including time to stop in some of the many farms that offer the local dishes such as game, noodles, mushrooms, truffles and cheeses and, most importantly, for a taste of the famous “Florentine steak”.
All this, of course, must be accompanied by a few glasses of the local wine produced in the Trasimeno Hills.
See also history of Citta della Pieve