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Poggibonsi

Poggibonsi is a lovely Italian town in the province of Siena, in Tuscany. It is located in the beautiful Val D'Elsa, on the Chianti hills. These territories were inhabited  by Greek-roman tribes. In the tenth century began a major population increase due to the passage of pilgrims along the Via Francigena,  that passed through these lands.  During this period began the development of Borgo Martyr, said then Borgo Marturi, then Borgo Vecchio. In 1155 the local people began to build on a hill of great strategic importance the village of Poggibonizzio, whose name was derived from "hill" and Bonizzo Segni, Lord of the place.

This beautiful city  was called "imperial city" by Frederick II of Swabia in 1220. He considered it one of the most beautiful cities in Italy. But its prosperity lasted only 115 years. Florence considered it an obstacle to its expansion, and in 1270 conquered  it  with the alliance of the Neapolitan and French armies.

Poggibonsi is famous for  its architectural beauty, such as the Church of San Lorenzo, built in the fourteenth century, a fine example of medieval architecture. Most important is the Collegiate Church of Santa Maria Assunta, the main church of Poggibonsi. The original Romanesque style was modified over the centuries due to several  reconstructions. In 1863 it was again demolished because it was unsafe and rebuilt in neoclassical style. In 1896 in the bell tower was added  the clock. Next to the church there is the museum, home to a painting exhibition. Here, you can find wonderful masterpieces of famous artists.

Another important monument is the Convento di San Lucchese. Originally in its place stood the church of Santa Maria in Camaldo. According to legend, in 1220 the Lord of Poggiobonizio gave the church and two houses  to St. Francis of Assisi. Here Francesco  knew  Lucchese Caggiano, which was then dedicated the convent. In 1236 Pope Gregory IX authorized the construction of a new church. The Franciscan friars received many donations to finance the work, especially after the death of Lucchese Gaggiano. The work was often interrupted by wars between  Florentine and Sienese troops. They were probably completed in 1300 during the construction of the main altar. Inside you will find numerous frescoes by Sienese painters and the reredos of Giovanni della Robbia depicting the Madonna with Child and Saints. On the left side of the aisle is the fresco of St. Nicholas of Bari. Painter was probably Bartolo di Fredi. On the right side  of the church there is the cloister.

In Poggibonsi there are many restaurants that offer their guests typical menus accompanied by good wine of the Chianti hills.

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