Poppi and the Castle of the Guidi Counts

Ancient Poppi is perched atop a hill right in the center of the valley, and at its highest point sits the castle. It is a superb position, one that dominates a self-contained world. Each day, the eye of the feudal lord could embrace his property at a glance.

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Up until three centuries ago the population of central Poppi numbered more than 6000. Today the residents of the old city hardly reach 600. It may seem nonsense to call a place with so few inhabitants a city. But with Poppi, as with many other little centers of ancient Tuscany and Italy, the term is appropriate. The cobbled streets, the piazzas, the architectural styles of Poppi are those of a city of olden times.

The Castle of Poppi is a 13th century construction with successive renaissance additions and embellishments. Externally it resembles the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, of which it may be considered the prototype, since it is probably the work of the same architect, Arnolfo di Cambio. The interior courtyard, the staircase, the great rooms with coffered ceilings are counted among the masterworks of Tuscan architecture. The chapel is decorated with frescoes by Taddeo Gaddi.

The Castle of Poppi houses a real treasure: a great historic library of more than 25,000 volumes, among which is a rich fund of over 1000 manuscripts and incunabula.


Scuola di Italiano C.C.I.C. ´Piero della Francesca´ Centro di Cultura Italiana Casentino
Piazza Amerighi n.1 · I - 52014 Poppi (AR) · Italia
Tel./Fax 0039 0575 529774 · Mobile 0039 393 6415418 · E-mail
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