Eighteenth-century houses like this one, were built by the Grand Dukes of Tuscany and the Order of Saint Stephen, and following their steps, even by private owners in the hills overlooking the Chiana; you can find those ancient buildings in the Valley along the public or inter-estate roads - often in spectacular straights - and flanked by mulberry trees, whose leaves were used for the breeding of silkworms.


This was practiced until about 1940 (the premises of the fortress of Montepulciano was active from 1869 to 1926 one of the larger establishments in this sector of Italy who came to employ up to 600 people). They are also called "Case Leopoldine" by the name of Peter Leopold of Lorraine. Having to accommodate many people (each farm was extended for an average of 23 ha) these farm houses consist of two floors, the porch or "portico" with graceful loggias  dominated by a dovecote tower. Often you can notice an iron cross as a signal that overlaps the structure (and in some case we have the benedectine monogram of Christ "JHS" greek name of Jesus).




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