Leper’s Tower

Aosta, Italy

The Leper’s Tower was built on the ruins of an ancient Roman tower and was originally known as the Friour Tower, after the family that lived there. This family, whose name was mentioned for the first time in 1191, also occupied the Ports Decumana, now abandoned.

After several changes of ownership, it was bought by the Order of Saint-Maurice in 1773 and was incorporated into a hospice of charity founded by Jean-Boniface Festaz. The current name derives from the fact that a leper named Pierre Bernard Guasco, a native of Oneglia was imprisoned there from 1773 to 1803. This story inspired Lepers of the city of Aosta, a story written by Xavier de Maistre, published in 1811.

In 1890, the tower was restored. Today it belongs to the Autonomous Region of Aosta Valley, which holds exhibitions at the site.

The Leper’s Tower was founded on a Roman tower whose foundations were excavated in the nineteenth century. A medieval tower was built on the site in the 15th century.

References:

Comments

Your name

Website (optional)



Details

Founded: 15th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in Italy

Rating

4.1/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Thomas Cleary (19 months ago)
Doors were locked. No hours posted.
Fortunato Barbaro (19 months ago)
È un po' trascurata.
antonio cranchi (20 months ago)
Da visitare molto interessante a chi piace la storia
Olexa Onyshchenko (2 years ago)
Nice tower and place around. But don't expect too much:)
Pietro Di Paolo (2 years ago)
Splendido luogo di raccordo tra passato e presente. L'atmosfera magica di questo pezzo di città racchiude un'aurea speciale. Luogo ideale per rilassarsi senza dover uscire dalla città.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Czocha Castle

Czocha Castle is located on the Lake Leśnia, what is now the Polish part of Upper Lusatia. Czocha castle was built on gneiss rock, and its oldest part is the keep, to which housing structures were later added.

Czocha Castle began as a stronghold, on the Czech-Lusatian border. Its construction was ordered by Wenceslaus I of Bohemia, in the middle of the 13th century (1241–1247). In 1253 castle was handed over to Konrad von Wallhausen, Bishop of Meissen. In 1319 the complex became part of the dukedom of Henry I of Jawor, and after his death, it was taken over by another Silesian prince, Bolko II the Small, and his wife Agnieszka. Origin of the stone castle dates back to 1329.

In the mid-14th century, Czocha Castle was annexed by Charles IV, Holy Roman Emperor and King of Bohemia. Then, between 1389 and 1453, it belonged to the noble families of von Dohn and von Kluks. Reinforced, the complex was besieged by the Hussites in the early 15th century, who captured it in 1427, and remained in the castle for unknown time (see Hussite Wars). In 1453, the castle was purchased by the family of von Nostitz, who owned it for 250 years, making several changes through remodelling projects in 1525 and 1611. Czocha's walls were strengthened and reinforced, which thwarted a Swedish siege of the complex during the Thirty Years War. In 1703, the castle was purchased by Jan Hartwig von Uechtritz, influential courtier of Augustus II the Strong. On August 17, 1793, the whole complex burned in a fire.

In 1909, Czocha was bought by a cigar manufacturer from Dresden, Ernst Gutschow, who ordered major remodelling, carried out by Berlin architect Bodo Ebhardt, based on a 1703 painting of the castle. Gutschow, who was close to the Russian Imperial Court and hosted several White emigres in Czocha, lived in the castle until March 1945. Upon leaving, he packed up the most valuable possessions and moved them out.

After World War II, the castle was ransacked several times, both by soldiers of the Red Army, and Polish thieves, who came to the so-called Recovered Territories from central and eastern part of the country. Pieces of furniture and other goods were stolen, and in the late 1940s and early 1950s, the castle was home to refugees from Greece. In 1952, Czocha was taken over by the Polish Army. Used as a military vacation resort, it was erased from official maps. The castle has been open to the public since September 1996 as a hotel and conference centre. The complex was featured in several movies and television series. Recently, the castle has been used as the setting of the College of Wizardry, a live action role-playing game (LARP) that takes place in their own universe and can be compared to Harry Potter.