Savignone Castle has a semi-circular great tower and rear rampart, and its position on a conglomerate spur that presents a cliff of 150 metres on one side is its main natural defence. In the 13th century the Fieschis took possession of Savignone and its castle, which only seemed to be lived in during the summer. The fief was certainly a feather in the cap of this lineage because its position in the Scrivia Valley was excellent for connection between Genoa and the Po area and also for the importance it had acquired in time as a traffic area.
The Fieschis, who had this fief in its power, belonged to the so-called Savignone lineage, one of the two lines that were formed by the two sons of Ugo Fieschi, the founder of the strain. Some other people, who were important not just for Fieschi’s history but also for Genoa and Italy, can also be counted among them. In 1332 Raffaello Fieschi was in contact with Robert of Anjou, from which he obtained some galleys. He took on the role of ambassador several times and seems to have been the person who poisoned Boccanegra.
The 14th century saw the castle pass to different owners among which Andronico Botta and Antoniotto Adorno until the arrival of Obietto Fieschi, who re-acquired it and then lost it again, together with Torriglia. They are complicated years for the relationships in the lineage, in constant conflict with the Sforzas who longed for the property until they managed to obtain Savignone and Montoggio, the main estates. It was Gian Luigi Fieschi the great who ousted the Milanese from the valley, giving such continuity to his dominion that it passed into history with the name of the “Fieschi state”.
The story from now onwards interweaves with the ambitions of the members of the Fieschi family as to Genoa, events that end with the famous conspiracy of 1547 and the resulting siege of Montoggio which, even though not having the same consequences for the Savignone line as for all the other family members, just the same caused its general decline or at least exclusion from the role of characters in the history of Genoa and the Scrivia Valley as it had been during the previous two centuries.References: