Sassuolo - Montegibbio Castle

Montegibbio Castle was erected on a mound on the front hills of the Appenines,  6km from Sassuolo, in the Medieval village of Montegibbio. The park is approximately 30 hectares  and is of great botanical interest.

The first fortifications of Mons Gibus or Gibulus (humpy mount) probably date back to the beginning of the 10th century, when the clergymen of Parma’s cathedral did their utmost  to defend their own territories from the Magyars.   Montegibbio castle belonged to Bonifacio of Tuscany and to his daughter Matilde of Canossa,  and lies within the circle of fortresses  built to  defend  the Lands of Canossa.   At the beginning of the 14th century  it was handed over to the Della Rosa Family, the lords of Sassuolo, who fortified it in 1321.   Montegibbio then followed the fate of Sassuolo, becoming the Este Family’s  property in 1357 and the Pio  Family’s in 1499. The castle underwent  considerable damage in the 1501 earthquake.   In 1599  it was handed over  to the Este Family again together with Sassuolo, but in 1636 the lands of Montegibbio were  yielded  to the Boschetti Family of Modena who rebuilt the castle and kept the large estate, which was then transformed into a marquisate, until 1676.   After many handovers, in 1851 the castle became the summer residence of the Borsari nobles – prominent  landowners of Finale Emilia, and was completely rebuilt,  and work was completed  in 1872.    The castle, together with the annexed Park,  has  belonged  to the Municipality  of Sassuolo, to the Provincial  Council  and to the Municipality of Modena since 1972.

A sandstone and brick door leads you to a small village surrounding the central court whose elliptic form testifies its adjustment  to the top part of the hill. The imposing medieval Keep, which preserves its original raised portal, overlooks the court together with the elegant Palace and Saint Peter’s church with  its ornate  baroque interior. The Palace’s rooms, decorated with patterns of neo-medieval taste, preserve an evocative  end of nineteenth -  beginning of twentieth century appearance.    The  communal vinegar works  of Sassuolo were opened  in 2003 in the rural buildings  and  can be visited by booking at the IAT,  the equivalent of the Italian Tourist Board (contact number: 0536 1844853).

The Giuseppe Medici Park

It is a “romantic”  English-style garden  enclosed within the walls of  Montegibbio Castle, and extends  for approximately 30 hectares. It is full of ancient trees  and is an important  Scots pine tree relictual zone  together with  oak trees, ash, hornbeams, chestnut trees and hazelnut trees.   It is open all year round.

ComuneSassuolo - 41049 (MO)

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