Loc. Petrognano Semifonte
50021 - Barberino Val D'Elsa
Firenze - Toscana - Italia
tel e fax 055 8075341
of Petrognano is on the green
hills and vineyards round the street that takes to Certaldo
a group of old houses, but if we look better, we’ll
see stone towers with smart
and finely decorated arches: city houses with medieval
towers secluded in the countryside.
not a mystery: Petrognano is the village that belonged
to a city called Semifonte.
mentions it in the 16th canto of
the Divine Comedy and he refers to its strong soldiers
and wise craftsmen: “Fiorenza fatti in là,
Semifon diven città”. The city was surrounded
by moats, barbicans, towers and very solid walls.
the centre is no more there, it was razed to the ground
in 1202. After an epic siege and the bloody final battle
of that war, the city surrendered and disappeared with
its inhabitants who were sent into exile.
farm there’s the old parish
church of Saint Peter, then reduced to mere chapel.
Inside there is still the wood crucifix
from the 12th century that is now in the parish
priest’s residence in Certaldo. A stone with coat
of arms is walled up under the alter. This probably belonged
to a valorous defender of Semifonte.