Verucchio, the Etruscans,Lombards et al

1. Panarama Verucchio (RN) Italy by Goldmund100 – Собствена творба

Verucchio isn’t a very large town – ranging over just 15 or so kilometres of hilltop – nevertheless, its position has been a strategic one due to its elevated position. The area has been inhabited for some 3,000 years and was once ruled by the Etruscans. Later, the town was named Verucchio (or Vero Occhio) translating to “True Eye” in reference to its peak position. Offering sweeping views over a wide band of coastal countryside in the Emilia-Romagna region of northeast Italy. Besides cozy winding streets and charming tiled-roof houses, Verucchio boasts the outstanding Malatesta Castle and an early 13th-century Franciscan convent. Legend has it that eight centuries ago, Saint Francis of Assisi planted the cypress that’s still growing outside of the convent.

Verucchio, Rimini monument valley Pinterest Grazia Noto

The Etruscan civilization is the modern English name given to a civilization ofancient Italy. Its homeland was in central Italy, just north of Rome, which is today called Tuscany. In ancient times there was a strong tradition that the Etruscans had emigrated from Lydia, on the eastern coast of present-day Turkey. Wiki-Etruscan civilization

Before the Romans took control of present-day Emilia-Romagna, it had been part of the Etruscan world and subsequently that of the Gauls. During the first thousand years of Christianity, trade flourished, as did culture and religion, thanks to the region’s numerous monasteries.
The history of Emilia-Romagna dates to Roman times when the region of Emilia was ruled by imperial judges linked to the nearby regions of either Liguria or Tuscany. After the fall of the Roman Empire in the 6th century, the Lombards, a Germanic tribe, founded the kingdom of Lombardy in northern and central Italy. This kingdom, which included the region known as Emilia, prospered until the Lombard dynasty was defeated by the Frankish king Charlemagne in 774. From the 6th to 8th centuries, the region of Romagna was under Byzantine rule and Ravenna was the capital of the Exarchate of Italy within the Eastern Roman Empire. In the 8th century, this region became a domain of the Papal States when Pepin, the son of Charlemagne, donated the land to the Pope in 754. wiki-Emilia-Romagna

The Kingdom of the Lombards (Latin: Regnum Langobardorum; Italian: Regno dei Longobardi; Lombard: Regn dei Lombards) also known as the Lombard Kingdom; later the Kingdom of (all) Italy (Latin: Regnum totius Italiae), was an early feudal state established by the Lombards, a Germanic people, on the Italian Peninsula in the latter part of the 6th century. The king was traditionally elected by the very highest-ranking aristocrats, the dukes, as several attempts to establish a hereditary dynasty failed. The kingdom was subdivided into a varying number of duchies, ruled by semi-autonomous dukes, which were in turn subdivided into gastaldates, a gastaldates was a Lombard official in charge of some portion of the royal demesne (a gastaldate, gastaldia or castaldia) with civil, martial, and judicial powers at the municipal level. The capital of the kingdom and the centre of its political life was Pavia in the current northern Italian region of Lombardy.

The Lombard invasion of Italy was opposed by the Byzantine Empire, which retained control of much of the peninsula until the mid-8th century. For most of the kingdom’s history, the Byzantine-ruled Exarchate of Ravenna and Duchy of Rome separated the northern Lombard duchies, collectively known as Langobardia Maior, from the two large southern duchies of Spoleto and Benevento, which constituted Langobardia Minor. Consequently, because of this division, the southern duchies were considerably more autonomous than the smaller northern duchies.    Wikipedia-Kingdom of the Lombards

The Cypress of St. Francis, 800 years old but it does not show , perfectly cloned in several specimens that will be donated to the Sacro Convento of Assisi

An imaginative legend, collected in the “Istoria Serafica” in the seventeenth century , says:
“…. One day to Brother Francis , who was passing tired along the ridges of the Apennines , the robe was caught on a little branch; he picked it up , and to took it as a walking stick for his wanderings , and once arrived , no longer needed, gave it to the fire : it writhed sizzling , but remained intact. Then St. Francis said: ” If you do not want to burn , grow up ! ” And he planted a large buds bloomed at once . Wherefore , as a sign of greater miracle , for the good of humans. Thus arose Friar Cypress , to the glory of our Lord …. ” .
by Moreno Moraldi

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Some years ago I have had the pleasure to collaborate in the publication of a book, published in Valencia ( Spain) , titled: “Monumental Cypresses Mediterranean heritage ” Among the many examples described ,the Cypress of St. Francis deserves a place of honour, this tree grows in the cloister of the Franciscan monastery of Verucchio (Rimini) . The Cypress of St. Francis is an impressive plant ; 

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Panarama Verucchio (RN) Italy -Image attribution Goldmund100, CC BY-SA 3.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0, via Wikimedia Commons