Castello Malaspina

- Toscana Viva

Castello Malaspina

Castello MalaspinaThe Malaspina Castle is the building that represents the period of dominion of the Tuscan lineage in Fosdinovo, where the castle rises, and in the Val di Magra more than any other. In effect, it belongs to the Malaspina family still today and, consequently, it appears in excellent conditions and it is open to the public.

This complex dates to the years between the XI and the XII century, a period during which various aristocratic families and the Bishop of Luni followed one another in ruling Fosdinovo. At that time, though, the stronghold had not its current appearance, yet, that, instead, Spinetta Malaspina created. His family got the power in the territory after a long series of events that started with the peace of 1306. On that occasion, Dante Alighieri, the author of the Divine Comedy, was an illustrious guest of the castle. He had come here with the team of diplomats charged to start a dialogue between the Bishopric and the group of local nobles.
In 1340, the Malaspina were officially the only rulers of Fosdinovo and its leader, Spinetta the Great, started the renovations and the renewal of the stronghold by reinforcing it as a defensive bastion. In the Modern Age, the Renaissance fascinated Malaspina so they ordered new renovations aimed at giving the castle certain characteristics that could give it the splendour of the noble residences of the time. Therefore, the changes mainly regard the inside: a courtyard was created and the salons were enriched with various decorations.
The Malaspina Castle, too, ranks in the legendary list of castles inhabited by ghosts. According to the popular tradition, the young Marquise Bianca Maria Aloisia Malaspina started a dispute with her family because she had a unpopular affair with a humble stable boy. Once she escaped from the convent of Santa Croce del Corvo, where her parents had confined her after she had refused to marry a nobleman, the young girl was brutally killed by her father. He walled up alive his daughter with a dog and a boar. The dog symbolized the girl's love and fidelity to her beloved stable boy, while the boar represents her rebellion against her parents.
According to tradition, her ghost still lives in the castle. Unfortunately, this frightening and, at the same time fascinating story contradicts history. At the time of these facts (the monastery of the Corvo existed in the XII century), the Malaspina were not the owners of the stronghold, yet, and the female descendants of the family with names similar to the girl's one lived in the modern times.
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