Urban Planning

The urban development  of Leonessa lends itself worthy reading. The specific characteristics of the city's foundations: up until first decades of the XIII century the inhabitants of the villages of Gastaldato Spoletino undertook the construction of the city and "made the design of the land, grandiose, streets and squares", according to the testimony of ancient manuscripts. The official act of construction goes back to the summer of 1278 (July 16): from that date, homes developed directly around the central square, from which eight main roads branched out. After a long lapse of time the city itself developed,around these eight main roads that point to the indirect influence of the classic Roman structures. Although exhaustive documentaries are lacking, the present material is sufficient enough to understand that Leonessa was amongst the cities under development that was capable of realizing this internal project, in following with the intent of its supporters and the needs of its inhabitants. The urban design of the "land" of Leonessa is attributed to the work of Pietro d'Angicourte, a noted architect and trusted employee of Carlo d'Angiņ.


The City Wall

The double circle of walls erected during the course of the XIII century now leave nothing to show in terms of the external perimeter wall. A few pieces of the internal wall do remain, attached to the city doors: the Aquiline door to the Orient, the Spoletina door of the Rock to the southwest, overlooking the castle of Ripa, the Penta door to the North, San Giovanni door to the southeast. Each door is recorded in the documentaries of the city.


The Porticos


The city structure of Leonessa points out the perpendicular meeting points in the curvatures of the square, partially bordered by a sequence of porticos tha accentuate the medieval characteristics of the town itself. The short porticos define the space itself, symbolical of the square, a place of congregation, of business and of exchange that gives life  to the city during the this period of time.


The Buildings


Public buildings of the university, the buildings of Priori and the Governor's residence developed around the immediate perimeter of the square. Each of these buildings was destroyed in 1703 by an earthquake. Instead, the municipal tower was knocked down during the beginning of the XX century. The medieval structure of the city, radically trasformed during the time of Farnese domination, is found only in sparse and fragmented traces in some specific architectural details conserved in the oldest buildings: among these, the trilobed and gothic windows stand out the most that are on the facade of the homes aligned along the lines of the city streets.