Strozzavolpe Castle

The castle of Stozzavolpe stands on a hill next to Poggibonsi and it’s easily recognizable and accessible from the city centre. It’s the most famous fortress among the minor ones that surround the town and the only one arrived to us almost intact. It stands on an hill in front of “Poggio Bonizio” where the Medicean project of the Cassero fortress’ building (see FORTEZZA DI POGGIO IMPERIALE) and of a new fortified town was started and, already known as “Scoriavolpe” in a document of 1154, it passed in 1330 from the Salimbeni’s family to the Adimari of Florence’s one.

LEGENDS - The castle is interesting not only from an historical and structural point of view but also because it’s the heart of many legends: the first one is about its name, formed by the union of two words, the verb “choke” and the noun “fox”.
According to a tale, the castle was built for desire of the marquis of Tuscany, Bonifazio, but, during its construction, a big and wild fox was attacking workers and knights, spitting fire and making impossible the conclusion of the fortress as long as the smart marquis choked it in the wood with a lace.
The court’s astrologist explained that the castle would exist just until the fox’s corpse remained entire; the animal’s body was filled with liquid gold and hidden inside the castle’s walls.
Nowadays, in full moon nights, the fox abandones its hiding place to wander in the wood.
Besides the ghost of the cursed fox, the castle is infested by another spirit.
According to one more legend, inside the walls there’s a secret room, called the “red chamber”, wherefrom the mourning of the beautiful and sad Cassandra Franceschi come, who, caught by her husband, Giannozzo da Cepparello, flirting with a servant, was imprisoned and left to die in the secret chamber, while the husband was carousing in the adjacent rooms.
Another strange episode involving the castle dates back to the seventies, when restoration works were carried on and one part of the crenellation was unusually and recently bricked up, while the worker appointed to that part of the castle had disappeared.
The brickwork was demolished and a scorched scroll was found which, in Gothic characters, reproduced the map for a hidden treasure while the workman and his family had leaved wihout discosing their destination.

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