Halfway between the Adriatic Sea
and Mount Fumaiolo
, contained in the scorpion designed by its fourteenth-fifteenth century walls, we find Cesena
, whose historical origin comes from the Etruscans
. The Romans called it Curva Caesena
. Later the town was part of the Exarchate of Ravenna.
During the Middle Ages Cesena fought for freedom against the neighbouring towns as long as in 1378 it passed under the rule of Malatesta
which assured a period of great cultural prosperity.
Today Cesena is famous as “Città Malatestiana”
and it preserves the charming Biblioteca Malatestiana.
The “Hall of Nuty”
of 1452 is the first municipal library in Italy and the oldest Monastery one entirely preserved in Europe; next to it we find the “Piana”
(the private library of Pope Pio VII), the Municipal library and the Lapidary Museum
, appendage of the Archaeological one, located in the Cloister of St. Francesco and containing local Prehistoric, Roman and Medieval finds.
In front of the Library the fifteenth-century impressive Palazzo del Ridotto
stands. It is characterized by the bronze statue of Pio VI by Calligari
In Piazza del Popolo
we can see Fontana Masini
, typical Mannerist monument (1591), and Palazzo Albomoz
(1359), seat of the municipality, with the Venetian loggia and the tower designed in 1466 by Nuti (inside it houses the Museum of Natural Sciences).
The adjoining Parco della Rimembranza
surrounds the Malatesta Fortress
, one of the most charming and best preserved in Romagna. In 1380, near the site in which, during the Byzantine period the first fortress stood, Galeotto Malatesta erected the pentagonal walls, with two towers that today house the Museum of Agricultural History.
Among the many churches of considerable artistic value (St. Domenico, The Suffrage, The Servants, The Cathedral) that of St. Agostino distinguishes for the remarkable paintings of Giuseppe Milani
and Girolamo Genga
The large group of artistic buildings (Romagnoli, Ghini...) is well represented by the eighteenth-century frescoed “Palazzo of O.I.R.”, near the Pinateca of Cassa di Risparmio di Cesena, a collection of great value (visit by appointment).
We can not mention the Alessandro Bonci Theatre
, build in 1843 and designed by Vincenzo Ghinelli
. The artist, during his long career, staged the best lyric and dramatic operas. Next to the building we find the Theatre Museum.
The Abbazia del Monte
, visible from every part of the town, combines in itself many historical layers: from the original core of 930 by St. Mauro Bishop, to the reconstruction of fifteenth and sixteenth-centuries, the dome of 1771-2 frescoed by Milani with the '"Assumption of the Virgin", and the restoration of 1914.
You can not miss the unique collection of 690 ex-voto, kept in it.
The other monastery of Cesena, landscape counterpart of the Abbey, is the sixteenth-century Cappuccini one. It preserves the precious “Estasi di San Francesco stigmatizzato
” by Guercino.
The culture review continues even outside the historic centre: Villa Silvia in Lizzano preserves the room in which Giosuè Carducci spent his last summers.
The large offer of itineraries completes with the Mining Museum
in Formignano and the Museum of Centuriazioni
(Roman land division) in S.Giorgio, in which the documents attesting the division into centuries of the area during the Roman Period are collected.
Cesena hands down its culture even through the taste of good cuisine, genuine and vigorous, which proposes tagliatelle
rigorously homemade ("spoja
(piadina), authentic symbol of the hospitality of Romagna. And at the end of the lavish meal you can not miss ciambella
soaked in Albana
, to sanction with a cheerful laugh the warmth agreement undertaken.
Today Cesena is an hardworking, lively and culturally active town with a university centre of five faculties.
It is not a coincidence that Piovene defined Cesena: "... the heart of the culture of Romagna ... the purest thing that, that century in which culture touched the extreme point of sophistication, gave us”.
And again: "This pretty town, surrounded by orchards, in spring shrouded by a cloud of white and pink trees, set on a hill and dominated by a fortress that includes in part it”; Because of its natural location, it has a similar climate; with cold and humid winters; sultry summers and temperate autumns. This climate has favoured fruit and vegetable production, that reached also the international markets.
Fruit and vegetable market, for typology, structure and numbers of business has achieved a good international level.
With its sugar mill; business and farms Cesena is a very lively agricultural and industrial centre. This helps to create a network of communication even in social field, in a territory rich in history and culture and located in an interesting landscape context.
Ancient town inhabited by the Umbrians
, Cesena developed in the plain between the river Savio
and the Via Emilia
. During the Roman period it was a lively centre, as evidenced by the ingenious and complex work of land division of the plain between the towns and the sea.
During the thirteenth century, the city was given to the church of Ravenna, therefore Pope Urbano VI granted it to the Malatesta
With Malatesta Novello
, the city reached its peak thanks to lots of works and the construction of that charming monument that is still today the Biblioteca Malatestiana
. The rule of Malatesta ended in 1465, afterwards the papal rule was restored.
Nowadays Cesena is one of the most important town of Romagna
, lively and hospitable, with a well-preserved historic centre, to discover and live on foot.
PLACES TO SEE
- Town Hall: Piazza del Popolo 10, tel. 0547 356111
- Tourist Information Office IAT, Piazza del Popolo 11 - Tel. 0547 356327; Fax 0547 356329
- Biblioteca Malatestiana (Malatesta Library)
- Rocca Malatestiana (Malatesta Fortress)
- Fontana Masini (Masini Fountain)
- Teatro Alessandro Bonci (Alessandro Bonci Theatre)
- Convento dei Capuccini (Capuchin Monastery)
- Museum System of Cesena – Ten Museum, open and to visit
- Bike tours in the north-east area of Cesena: the road network, still preserved, of the ancient Roman land division (Centuriazione), with a perfect orthogonal plaiting and a precise north-south orientation, admirable civil engineering, agricultural and military work (suggested starting point: CERVESE NORD district board – San Giorgio, via Fratelli Latini 24). The ring route (in plain, through the countryside and small churches) cross 42 Roman “Quadre”: didactic road signs, progressively numbered, are distributed in the localities of the town.