Oldofredi Castle

Iseo, Italy

The Oldofredi castle was one of three fortifications built to defend Montisola: the second was the fortress Oldofredi Martinengo in Sensole and the third was in Siviano. Like the Sensole castle, with which it is often confused in many sources, the Peschiera castle was also owned by the Oldofredi family. A tower may be used by Frederick Barbarossa in 1162 as a military observation point. The first document attesting the presence of a castle in Peschiera is a notarial deed dated 26 March 1488 signed 'in Peschiera of Montisola' in the 'Oldofredi residence'.

The castle exchanged hands many times during the 19th and 20th Centuries: first to the Oldofredi Tadini branch, then to the Maraglio family, from which it takes one of the names by which it is known, and finally to the Agnesi family. These changes brought about significant modifications and demolitions that determined its present appearance. Currently the property is used as a residential complex and restaurant.

The complex consists of several buildings built around an open courtyard on the southern side. The originating centre was almost certainly built in the Middle Ages, but over the centuries it has been renovated several times, both internally and externally, to turn it into a stately residential complex. In particular, the portico with pointed arches and the overhanging dovecote at the north-eastern entrance all leant against it; the loggia with Sarnico stone columns and pillars were added along the eastern side, and along the western side the portico with seven arches and overhanging loggia with fourteen arches, which originally boasted architectural elements in Sarnico stone, replaced in recent times by masonry pillars.

The most ancient part consists of the building facing the lake, while the more recent part is upstream, featuring exposed masonry that has been largely rebuilt. On the southern side of the ancient centre there was the tower described by Giovanni da Lezze in 1610 and demolished around 1870. There is an exquisite gothic fresco of Lombard style dated 1458 on an outer wall of the ground floor. The painting depicts Madonna and Child on a Throne seated on a throne with a greatly partial view.

Thanks to recent renovation work, several medieval walls have been brought to light, connoted by the presence of joint sealings, and have revealed torn fragments of decorative late medieval mural paintings, located on the first floor of the northern side. On the main floor there are halls with wooden 18th Century painted ceilings.



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Via Mirolte 56, Iseo, Italy
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Founded: 12th century
Category: Castles and fortifications in Italy


3.9/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Giovanna Cambieri (4 months ago)
All young, trained, welcoming and professional staff. Very helpful. Beautiful setting for a weekend to remember
Mr Pittogatto (7 months ago)
I have fought many times under the walls of this fortress, both to defend it and to conquer it. Fortunately, in recent years the wars have subsided and the castle has become a place where the people of the people gather happily and exchange glances of reunion and happiness. Perhaps the future will reserve us having to defend our manor again and then we will arm ourselves with spears and swords and arrows and pitch and do what needs to be done to defend our bastion. Sure that God will be on our side. Gather the standard bearers, at the first light of dawn we will be at war.
Chiara Alborghetti (8 months ago)
Photo feb. 2021 The Oldofredi castle is pretty overall, with a beautiful park that invites you to visit. Unfortunately, the flooring of the access stairs is anonymous, almost like a gym, and clashes with the medieval character of the building; it belittles it. Much better the secondary access with a beautiful white stone portal and the park with a cannon. Currently the museum of the two wars is closed. It will reopen after the restoration. I hope that the municipality can intervene on the public green to restore charm to the castle. It should take its cue from the gardens in Paratico. ? I recommend continuing in the historic center and visiting the Arsenale ? and the lakefront with its cantilevered walkways. Iseo has beautiful buildings, elegant squares, antique and high fashion shops. If you are sporty, get on your bikes up to the Torbiere. ?
Renato Riccio (2 years ago)
Oltre al posto unico anche la vicinanza al centro stesso del paese e della vita sul Lago d'Iseo DA RITROVARSI ANCORA
marco la forgia (2 years ago)
Work in progress
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