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Siege of the Villa

Every year, on the third weekend of September, in Poggio a Caiano it is possible to immerse yourself in the Renaissance! Do you know how? Taking part in the famous Siege of the Villa festival at the splendid Medici Villa, a gem of the Poggio a Caiano area.

This festival was created to remember a historical event: on 8th December 1565, Archduchess Giovanna of Habsburg, daughter of Emperor Ferdinand I, stopped in Poggio a Caiano before going to Florence to marry Francesco I de' Medici. On that occasion, the people welcomed her with so much joy that it seemed like a real "siege". As a sign of gratitude for the warm welcome, the noblewoman ordered the wine to flow abundantly from the Mascherone fountain, located in the centre of the village.

In the last century, wine was again flowed from the fountain to celebrate special events, such as the end of the Second World War, but since 1984 this tradition has become the basis of the Renaissance festival.

For three days, Poggio a Caiano takes a journey back in time, with historical reconstructions of the wedding banquet in the Villa, games and figures in period costumes, shows, thematic visits, a market of ancient arts and crafts where artisans dressed in clothes of those times show their skills, gastronomic stalls called "taverns", historical processions and fireworks.