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Visita il Mugello, culla dei Medici, a due passi da Firenze e le bellezze toscane

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Inhabitants in 1991: 14.862

The municipal territory of Orbetello extends for 226,98 square kilometres in a coastal zone in part flat and in part hilly to the extreme south of the Toscana Maremma. Dominion of the Abbey of the Tre Fontane in the Medieval, it became capital of the Presidi State in modern times. It suffered territorial detractions and additions loosing in 1843 the promontory of Monte Argentario and encompassing, in the same year, the community of Capalbio (however turned to autonomous municipality in 1960).

Orbetello, which one supposes already existed in the VII century B.C. was in Pre-Roman times an exceedingly flourishing centre. In the Dark Ages, probably around the IX century its territory was included in the possessions of the Roman Abbey delle Tre Fontane, which in 1269, in order to conserve a formal rights of property, was forced to cede the effective dominion to Ildebrandino il Rosso degi Aldobrandeschi of Sovana. In the course of the 1300s after the interlude of a domination by Orvieto, Orbetello was the object of context among the Orsini (who replaced the Aldobrandeschi by succession) and the Siena republic, who acquired the possession in 1414.

The Siena dominion was legitimated in 1452 by the Abbey delle Tre Fontane, whose rights over the territory were never extinguished. Besieged and sacked several times (in 1454 by the Adventurer company of Captain Gonzaga, in 1526 by the Papal troops, in 1543 by a Turkish invasion), Orbetello became capital of the little Presidi State in 1557 with the victory of the Imperial forces and the Medicee in the Siena war, the State also comprised .Talamone, l’Argentario and Longone nell’Elba. Besieged in vain by the French in 1646, passed in 1708 to the Austrians, from 1746 to the Borboni of Napoli. In 1808 the remains of the Presidi State were incorporated in the Napoleonic realm of Etruria and, in 1815, in the Grand Duchy of Toscana. Ansedonia is of notable historic interest, as is the ancient Cosa a Roman colony founded in 273 B.C. completely destroyed by Siena in 1329, and Talamone an Etruscan and Roman Port, dominated by the Aldobrandeschi and at the beginning of the 1300s it became the slipway for the Siena Republic.

Places to visit:
Palazzo di Spagna, residence of the Spanish Viceroy, and dominated by the VI century Clock Tower.
Ex Convento delle Clarisse from 1615, suppressed in 1808. It is the Seat of the Municipal Library
Il Mulino (The Mill), the last remaining mill of the nine built by Siena in XVI century in the lagoon.
Cathedral, named for S. Maria Assunta, the construction is founded on a pre-existing pagan temple. It was rebuilt in 1376 by the Orsini and subsequently enlarged and restored. The three nave interior hosts various works of art.

Historical info reproduced upon authorization of Regione Toscana - Dipartimento della Presidenza E Affari Legislativi e Giuridici
Picture by Sandro Santioli
Translated by Ann Mountford

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