The twin towers that defy the ban of the Podestà

Arriving in San Gimignano from the countryside, along Via Vecchia, I feel like a pilgrim, and the view that looms before me is unimaginable, more than a fairy tale.

Spending a night like a Ghibelline, sleeping in a room with windows so huge that I seem to soar over the hills, or drinking a coffee so high up that I’m watching birds fly past: these are the twin towers of San Gimignano, the same ones that inspired those in New York.

The story of how these buildings were conceived has always amused me, because they’re the result of a 1255 ban on building towers higher than the Podestà Tower, known as the “Rognosa.” However, the ban was circumvented by the powerful Guelph Salvucci family, who built these two twin towers in order to theoretically superimpose them (the size of the base of one corresponds to the size of the top of the other). The hypothetical stacking of these two towers would therefore have far exceeded and therefore dominated the Podestà Tower.

Find out other tips they talk about

San GimignanoTuscanyUNESCOVillages