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Historical characters 
from the nineteenth century to antiquity

In this subsection we propose the biographies of some characters who played a role in the history of the city in the period from the nineteenth century to antiquity.

Pietro Burelli





Pietro Burelli

Military engineer in the service of the Serenissima


curated by Fabio Mariotti

Pietro Burelli - Galleria dei personaggi

On December 18, 1960, 59 years ago, the municipal administration named a street after Pietro Burelli. Who was this character considered worthy of the title of a street and how many people from Umberto today know its history?


The historical research of Col. Pilota dott. Giuseppe Cozzari at the historical archive of the city of Venice, with the precious collaboration of the historian Renato Codovini for the transcription of the texts. In addition to some letters that testify the process for hiring our ancestor as a military engineer expert in defensive fortifications, Cozzari also found an original manuscript that illustrates in detail, even with precise images, the functioning of a new weapon from war, the "Trabucco", conceived by Burelli.



Pietro Burelli, son of Tommaso "distinguished scholar", was born in Fratta in 1584. From a very young age he showed great talent and a marked aptitude for mathematical sciences. The historian Antonio Guerini, in his work " History of the land of Fratta, now Umbertide - 1883 " says that " civil and military architecture was preferably his main passion in order to open up a more splendid field on the streets of honor, he gave himself totally to a career in arms ". For this he went to Spain, then engaged in a bloody war with the Turks, where he reached the rank of captain. He became particularly adept at building countryside fortifications that resisted the assault of cavalry and infantry. For this reason, when he returned to Italy, he put himself at the service of the Most Serene Venetian Republic, recommended to Doge Niccolò Donatuti by the General Superintendent in Terra Ferma Benedetto Moro, with a very rich commission of 800 scudi a year. In this on activity in the Veneto region he undertook the restoration and restructuring of the bastions of Palmanova and the grandiose project of the fortress of Verona, a city in which, surprised by a serious illness, he died in 1642 at the age of 58.


Article published in the December 2019 issue of "Local Information ".

Sources: Fabio Mariotti.  The documentation was found in the historical archive of the Municipality of Venice by Dr. Giuseppe Cozzari and transcribed from the vernacular by the historian Renato Codovini.



Great opera singer


curated by Fabio Mariotti

Domenico Bruni
Domenico Bruni.JPEG

He was born in Fratta on February 28, 1758, to Pietro, the master mason, and Francesca Brischi. Already at an early age he showed a good disposition to singing. Domenico's father belonged to the Compagnia della S. Croce. It is therefore probable that the young man learned the first rudiments of music in the school of the Company, starting from 1764. Bruni's debut at Fratta, with a soprano voice, is in 1772, at the age of 14.

At the age of 15, according to a cruel custom of that time, often adopted by poor families who had children particularly gifted in singing, Domenico was emasculated. This made him one of the most important emasculated singers of the time. His first performance in a large theater, the Alibert in Rome, dates back to 1776. From 1780 to 1787 he sang in some of the most important Italian theaters and his fame began to cross national borders. In 1787 he was called to the court of Catherine II of Russia, where he arrived after a long and adventurous journey and where he remained until 1790.

The most important years of his career go from 1791 to 1796. In this period he was also called to London where he performed in 1793.

The debut as a professional singer in his city is dated 8 September 1795, during the Feast of the Madonna della Reggia, probably in the Collegiate Church.

After his career, Bruni returned in 1797 to Fratta where, in consideration of the fame he had achieved and despite the opposition of the rich local notables who did not want to accept him among themselves, he was elected Prior of the Confraternity of San Bernardino. This important task was entrusted to him again from 1805 to 1807, while in 1804 and from 1816 to 1818 he was appointed Depositary (today we would say cashier) of the same Confraternity. Relations with the Compagnia della SS Concezione date back to 1795. In 1814 he was elected Prior, while in 1812 and from 1819 to 1821, the year of his death, he was appointed Depositary.

Bruni's deep ties with the local Confraternities are also demonstrated by the will, where he asked for his body to be buried in the church of San Bernardino and left an annual legacy of 10 scudi to the Confraternity.

Domenico Bruni's name is also inextricably linked to the Theater. On 4 August 1808, in fact, he was appointed president of the Accademia dei Riuniti. During that meeting the municipality was asked the possibility of using the entire building where the theater room was located in order to create a real theater, what is still called Teatro dei Riuniti, whose works were completed in 1814. .




- Nicola Lucarelli: "Domenico Bruni (1758 - 1821) - Biography of an emasculated singer"

- Ed. Municipality of Umbertide, 1992


- Text published in the "Calendar of Umbertide 1998" - Ed. Municipality of Umbertide, 1998

Copertina libro Domenico Bruni.jpg
Zelmirina Agnolucci


Popular opera singer





by Amedeo Massetti










She bore the name of her grandmother, Zelmirina, her maternal grandmother Zelmira Savelli (1) , wife of Gabriele Santini, whose homonymous grandson would become internationally renowned conductor (2) . The mother, Maria Santini, fifth of the seven children of Gabriele and Zelmira, born in 1848 (3) , had married Francesco Agnolucci, 1851, great young violinist director, from 1871 to 1875, of the school

municipal music of Umbertide, teacher of many children. He will also conduct, highly esteemed, many philharmonic and musical bands in various cities of Italy.

Zelmirina was born in Umbertide in 1879. She had breathed the notes since she was a child listening to the sweet melodies played by her father in their large country house. She had studied singing, graduating as a soprano with Pietro Mascagni at the “G. Rossini ”in Pesaro (4) , where he went twice a month in a horse-drawn carriage.

The first performance in the theater in Umbertide

We find it for the first time on the evening of April 4, 1898 at the “Teatro dei Signori Riuniti” in a show of some importance that deserved the honors of the chronicles (5). Everything was organized "for the benefit of the sightless singer Emilia Giannuzzi", passing through Umbertide, who performed in front of a large and passionate audience. The theater, in fact, despite the rain for many days and the weather discouraging the evening outings, was crowded, "the boxes overflowed with representatives of the gentle sex". This in spite of a humid Lent evening, a Monday that began Holy Week. But Giannuzzi was a good soprano and they sang next to her

the Umbertidesi Zelmirina Agnolucci, occasionally in the role of contralto, “very admired”, and Giulio Santini, known and appreciated baritone (6). A great local musician, Massimo Martinelli, director of the Municipal Concert, always present in important musical events, accompanied them on the piano. Zelmirina had performed several times at the Morlacchi theater in Perugia as a dramatic soprano, starting a demanding career that had already given her various satisfactions (7). He then began his artistic career by singing in companies of national level. His Mimì in the "Bohème" at the prestigious "Coccia" of Novara (8) during the 1899 Carnival (9) is memorable and the interpretation, in the same theater, of the "Devil's Trill" by Stanislao Falchi (10), in the splendid stage costumes.


The tour in Russia

But the first major tour of his life was the one he undertook at the beginning of the twentieth century:

he would take her to St. Petersburg, to sing for Tsar Nicholas II. The girl, twenty-one,

she left with her father Francesco Agnolucci, after signing a contract with

the impresario for exhibitions in various cities on the long way to the capital of the Russian empire.

We find her in this adventurous artistic journey, in March 1900, at the Grand Theater of Vilna (11)

where he sings in the "Cavalleria Rusticana" together with Luisa De Sirianna, Carolina Zawner, Federico

Percopo (tenor), Giuseppe Pimazzoni and Ignazio Pompa (12). The next stop was the Theater

Riga National (13), in May 1900, together with Ernesto Pettinari and again with the baritone

Ignazio Pompa (14).

Great success at the Imperial Theater in St. Petersburg

But the most important performance was at the Imperial Theater in St. Petersburg, where Tsar Nicholas II sat in the audience (15). It was a great success and the young soprano impressed with her skill and beauty Wassili Elisiewch Lithewsky, noble councilor of the Tsar (galavà), governor of Vitebsk, now a city of Belarus. During Zelmira's stay in St. Petersburg there was an intense acquaintance between the two which resulted in the Russian noble's request for marriage. The girl's father agreed, and had to pay the entrepreneur a large sum to compensate for the commitments that Zelmira would have to fulfill upon his return.






Marriage with the Russian nobleman Wassili E. Lithewsky

The wedding was celebrated in Vitebsk after not a few difficulties: Wassili even spent a few days locked up in a military fortress for not having asked the Tsar for permission to marry, as was prescribed for officers; but the impetus to marry the young soprano had made him forget every procedure of his role. Wassili was born in Ekaterinodar (16), on the Black Sea, in 1860 and was almost twenty years older than the girl, a charismatic and charming forty-year-old. The couple settled in the city ruled by their husband and began a happy life together.

Two children were born soon: Boris in 1901 and Elena in 1904. Wassili was so in love that he built a theater in their sumptuous palace in Vitebsk where his wife put on shows in which she performed in the singing roles. A large adjoining room housed a specimen of every musical instrument existing at the time: incomparable, precious furnishings, desired by Wassili, by his love for Zelmira, by his artistic sensitivity (17).

Francesco Agnolucci stayed for some time in Russia close to his daughter, then returned to Italy. He died in 1917 in his house in Rio, on the border between the towns of Montone and Umbertide, at the age of 66 (18).


The return to Italy with her husband and two children

In 1914 Zelmirina left with Wassili for Italy to introduce her mother Maria and the Agnolucci family to her husband and children. The Lithewskys stayed for a few months but Wassili, after the First World War broke out, being an official of the Tsar, had to return to Russia; his wife and children remained at home; Boris and Elena completed their studies in Italy. "Stay here" - Wassili had told them - "when the war ends I will come and pick you up".


After the Russian Revolution, Wassili was forced into hiding

But in October 1917, in the middle of the world conflict, the Bolshevik revolution broke out in Russia. All classes of the nobility were legally abolished. Wassili had to hide to escape arrest and was forced to live in hiding for a long time, aided by his own farmers. Her relatives had been killed with summary executions, without trial, including the two sisters Barbara and Alessandra, schoolmates of Elena of Montenegro, who later became the wife of Vittorio Emanuele III of Savoy.

Only nine years later, in November 1926, "General Lithewsky" managed to get in touch with the Italian foreign ministry through official diplomatic channels. Through the consulate in Odessa, in present day Ukraine, he obtained a passport with relative visa; for a moment the darkness seemed to clear but the operation was not successful and the former Tsar's officer had to go back into hiding. In 1929 he managed to send his family a photo of him, addressed with affection to "dear Lolina", his daughter Elena. In Italy, in 1918, due to the great "Spanish flu" which killed 20 million people all over the world, the eldest son Boris had died when he was only seventeen years old. The loss of her son had upset Zelmirina.

Wassili Lithewsky spent very hard times in Russia: for almost ten years his relatives in Italy had not been able to receive news. Amid enormous difficulties, he went clandestinely in various parts of the territory, fleeing into the deserts of Central Asia, supported only by the desire to see his owners again.

In the early thirties of the twentieth century, the climate calmed a little, the family research began: the son-in-law, Dr. Carlo Alberto Angelini, husband of Elena, knew well and contacted the Italian ambassador in Moscow, Bernardo Attolico; he also asked for the intervention of the Red Cross. Even the engineer Adolfo Ghisalberti, grandson of Maria Santini (19) got involved in the research.

Finally he was able to find him in the Gobi desert, in Mongolia, and to organize his return: in the summer of 1932 Wassili was able to leave for Italy. Carlo Alberto Angelini went to pick him up at the port of Genoa. His physique was very weak: several times it was necessary to support him during the transfers of the trip.


After countless ups and downs, the return to the family

When the Tsar's adviser arrived in Umbertide, on his way to the country house in Rio, hollow face, white lace, almond-shaped eyes, many people noticed the rich dress of a Russian nobleman which gave his tall and majestic figure an aura of charm and mystery. .

Zelmirina, despite her joy, suffered a great shock upon the arrival of her husband whom she had had to leave a long time ago. The second child, Elena, who saw him again after 15 years, stopped breastfeeding her daughter Viola due to the trauma (20).

Wassili finally settled in the large house of the Agnolucci family. An avid smoker, he slept with the light of a candle on the bedside table because when he woke up he had an urgent need to light a cigarette. But the elderly aristocrat will not be able to enjoy the warmth of the newly found family for long because he died of pulmonary emphysema only three months later (21).


Zelmirina's death on 5 July 1944

Zelmirina, bent by the adversities of life, suffering in her youth (22) from a viral form of lethargic encephalitis (23), fell ill with Parkinson's disease and spent the last few years in suffering. She was lovingly assisted in her illness by her son-in-law, Carlo Alberto Angelini, doctor, husband of his daughter Elena. He died on 5 July 1944, the day of Umbertide's Liberation (24), invoking his beloved son Boris, at the "Palazzo della Tramontana", the current villa owned by Cozzari along the road leading to Migianella (25), then owned by Agnolucci .


30th September 2013

















Historical research by Amedeo Massetti


Published in March 2014 on n.52 of "Altotiberine Pages" by the Historical Association of the Upper Tiber Valley.


Reduced text published in the "Calendar of Umbertide 2015" - Ed. Municipality of Umbertide 2015



Notes to the text:

1 Zelmira, born in Umbertide in 1820, belonged to the Savelli family, living in via Stella; she was the sister of Giuseppe Savelli, mayor of Umbertide several times from 1863 to 1880, and of Don Flaviano, canon and archpriest of the Collegiate Church of S. Maria della Reggia. Zelmira Savelli will die in 1875.

2 Gabriele Santini was born on January 20, 1886; the father was Pio Santini, the mother Carmela Nolaschi. He studied at the “F. Morlacchi ”cello and piano and later moved to the GB Martini Conservatory of Bologna where he completed his composition studies with G. Minguzzi and P. Micci. He began his career as a conductor as early as 1904 and devoted himself almost exclusively to the operatic genre. After a first period at the Teatro Costanzi in Rome (now the Opera Theater), he was hired by various theaters in Latin America. He stayed for eight seasons at the Colon Theater in Buenos Aires and later at the Municipal Theater in Rio de Janeiro, at the Lyric Opera in Chicago and at the Manhattan Theater in New York. From 1925 to 1929 he was called to the Alla Scala theater in Milan as assistant to maestro Arturo Toscanini. He came back

then at the Rome Opera where he remained permanently until 1933 and from 1944 to 1947 he held the position of director here

artistic. In 1951 he directed the company of S. Carlo di Napoli in the tour in Paris, for the celebrations of Verdi's fiftieth anniversary. He directed several seasons at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan in 1946 and from 1960 to 1964, the year of his death (From N. LUCARELLI, Gabriele Santini, illustrious from Umbertide, in "Umbertide Cronache", bimonthly periodical of the Municipality of Umbertide, n. 1- 2002, p. 42).

3 A. MASSETTI, Two centuries on the march, Umbertide and the band, Città di Castello, Petruzzi, 2008, p. 139.

4 Testimony of the granddaughter Fiore Angelini.

5 The Liberal Union, April 5, 1998, p. 2.

6 In the second half of the 19th century the baritone voice of Giulio Santini came to the attention of the lyrical mode. In 1872 he was hired as first baritone at the Fermo theater. From here he moved to Sansepolcro and in 1874 he sang at the Teatro Nuovo in Florence as the first absolute baritone, where he collected sensational successes. During his long stay in this city, he also performed in the Bellincioni Hall, in via delle Belle Donne. At the concert, performed on January 30, 1875, Santini participated incognito, perhaps for reasons imposed by his relationship with the new theater. Leaving Florence, he performed for a long time first in Siena, then in Perugia, where he performed 12 performances of Donizetti's “La Favorita”. In February 1879, Santini sang in Verdi's “Luisa Miller” at the Città di Castello theater. The news about him

they end with 1880, the year in which he was hired by the Arezzo Theater. Throughout his career he received certificates of esteem and profound appreciation for his professional performances from the entrepreneurs. (R. CODOVINI - R. SCIURPA, Umbertide in the 19th century, Città di Castello, GESP, 2001, p. 307).

7 Testimony of the granddaughter Fiore Angelini.

8 The “Coccia” theater in Novara, one of the major traditional Italian theaters, was inaugurated on 21 January 1888 with the opera “Gli Ugonotti” by Giacomo Meyarbeer, directed by Arturo Tscanini. It is named after Carlo Coccia, chapel master of the Chapter of the Novara cathedral.

9 Documents now in the possession of the niece Viola Angelini.

10 Stanislao Falchi, born in Terni on January 29, 1851, was a pupil of C. Maggi and S. Meluzzi, who started him on the study of composition. In order to achieve a more in-depth preparation, he moved to Rome, where musical studies experienced a lively revival in the climate of cultural renewal in the years following the unification of Italy. In 1877 the musical high school of S. Cecilia was inaugurated, divided into numerous courses: Falchi received the post of teacher of choral singing and in 1882 of normal singing, appointments that gave him particular prestige. He will then be director of choral singing in various schools in Rome from 1883, crowning a splendid didactic career; he will have the chair of counterpoint, fugue and composition in 1890 in the conservatory of S. Cecilia (Biographical Dictionary of the Italians Treccani).

11 Today's Vilnius, then a Russian city, now the state of Lithuania.

12 The baritone Ignazio Pompa, born in Rome in 1860, studied both in Milan and in his city. Success was not long in coming

come. Over thirty, he entered various theater companies, from the Castellano Company to Labruna, Granzini, Dazig and sang in important European theaters, from Paris to Le Havre, from Ostend to Liege, to Poltava. He also sang in Smyrna, Athens, Constantinople, Cairo, Alexandria in Egypt. His presence in Russian and Ukrainian theaters, from Smolensk, where he married in 1899, to Wilnius, from St. Petersburg to Minsk, Kursk, Jekaterinoslav, Theodosia, Molitopoli, Kerck, and other Russian and Ukrainian cities, was successfully noticed. He died in London in 1909 (

13 Riga, then a Russian city, is now the capital of the Baltic state of Latvia.

14 Ibid.

15 The current Mariinsky Theater, in St. Petersburg. It owes its name to Princess Maria Aleksandrovna and in the past it had, in Soviet times, the name of Kirov Theater, (in honor of Sergej Kirov) and National Academy of Opera and Ballet and, in Tsarist times, Imperial Theater of San Petersburg.

16 The city, since December 1920, has been renamed Krasnodar.

17 Testimony of the niece Viola Angelini.

18 He is buried in the Savelli chapel, in the left hemicycle of the Umbertide cemetery. On his gravestone is the following

critta: He dedicated his beautiful art, his illicit industrious life to his wife and his children who with infinite reverent love venerate the tearful memory.

19 Testimony of his daughter Paola Ghisalberti.

20 Testimony of the niece Viola Angelini.

21 Wassili Lithwsky is also buried in the Umbertide cemetery, in the Savelli chapel.

22 The husband had disappeared in the chaos of the Russian revolution and they had not even been able to write to each other anymore.

23 The father of ladies Fiore and Viola, Carlo Alberto Angelini, a doctor, also had contact with Queen Elena who

had promoted and funded studies on this disease.

24 On 5 July 1944 Umberttde was liberated by soldiers of the British 8th Army.

25 The villa to the left of those who climb towards Migianella, which is accessed along a path bordered by maritime pines. In the 1930s it belonged to the Agnolucci family.



The singer with her son Boris
Tsar Nicholas II
Zelmirina with her husband Wassili
Singer  with some of the clothes used on stage


Literate and poet


curated by Fabio Mariotti




















He was born on March 26, 1548 in Fratta, to Luca Antonio Alberti and Ippolita Petrogalli. He spent his childhood and adolescence in severe studies and in his early twenties he was elected "coadjutor" of the chancellor of the municipality of Perugia.

He soon acquired a reputation as a talented poet. His rhymes had, while he was still alive, two different editions and many of them saw the light in valuable collections of other important and illustrious writers of the time, including the valuable "nine sonnets", written by Our for the "Conversion of Saint Mary Magdalene".

He wrote various highly praised works: a book of poems entitled "Rime di Filippo Alberti" printed in Rome and Venice; a beautiful song over the cicada; a tragedy entitled "Cestio Macedonico" whose protagonist was a certain Cestio citizen of Perugia, who having fought with the Romans in the

war of Macedonians and in that having been reported for generous actions, he deserved the nickname of Macedonico.

Not all of his works were published and many went missing - although we have news and titles - following his long illness and death.

Filippo Alberti was held in high regard by personalities of the time such as Alfonso d'Este, Duke of Ferrara, Cardinals Bonifacio Bevilacqua and Domenico Pinelli and the Marquis Ascanio della Cornia. It was held in honor by men of letters such as the illustrious humanist Marco Antonio Bonciari, Scipione Tolomei, Cesare Crispolti senior, Giovan Battista Lauri, Cesare Caporali, Claudio Contuli and Cesare Alessi. But the main boast for Alberti was the friendship that Torquato Tasso professed to him; friendship based on the esteem that the great poet had for the man of letters from Fratta. Alberti tells us about his acquaintance with Tasso in Ferrara, cultivated through an affectionate correspondence with our Filippo, to whom he also dedicated a sonnet, and did not disdain to ask him for advice on the "Gerusalemme Liberata" and, if he had any, to follow them.

Alberti was also a good prose writer (there are praises of illustrious men, still unpublished, preserved in the Augusta library in Perugia). Some of these works were not completed, others remained unpublished both for the envy of the powerful of the time, as confirmed by Lauri and Oldoino, and for his poor health.

The literary merits and the love he brought to Fratta and Perugia lead us to believe that it would have been very interesting to have a volume of his lost "Historical Memories of Perugia", written by him when the Roman Carlo Conti was governor of the city of the Grifo. , he who under Pope Clement VIII "was tempted to make the Church of Perugia archipiscopal". His studies did not remove Alberti from public offices and he, who in 1573 had been elected "Coadjutor" of the chancellor of the municipality of Perugia, was called to take over the direction of the prioral chancellery, an office to which distinguished men were always assigned for prudence and by doctrine.

Friends and admirers had to mourn his death when he was not yet old. He was 64 when he retired to live in Fratta and ended his days there, on 12 September 1612. He is buried in the church of San Domenico in Perugia.

The street where his house was located, in the historic center, now bears the name of "via Alberti".


Some poems by Filippo Alberti

It turns out more not to love

I said, you were my good

And my life, Orsella

More than the sun wanders, and beautiful.

Hor I unsubscribe, and 'the song

I address the blame, a l'ire

I loved you, I hate you just as much.

And out of troubles, and pains

Behold, I too am mine

To God, perfidious, to God.


Treats that the women of Perugia, past one                                                                     certain age, they should wear black

Ouch, foolish is he who believes

What a woman in a black dress

May it seem less beautiful, and less haughty.

the nigga the beautiful does not take away,

And Law cake is that

That only others grant

Color, which always announces or deaths, or pains,

It thunders, and the sky flashes when it is darkest,

Negra serpe has more tosco.


Omen of the beauty of a girl

Green apple six

Vague girl, and with beautiful outward eyes

Sol virginelle gratitude and still breathe;

But Cupid is already sharpening the guilty darts,

Already in the man the face has removed,

To turn it on then in your beautiful face.




Historical calendar of Umbertide 2002 - Ed. Municipality of Umbertide - 2002

Arcangelo Chelli - “The illustrious men of Umbertide” - Ed. Tipografia Tiberina - 1888










Alberti 1.tif
Alberti 2.png
Alberti 3.JPG
Via Alberti
Ernesto Freguglia



The story of an adopted Umbertidese painter



by Amedeo Massetti

Filippo Alberti
Ernesto Freguglia (1875). The Foro Boario, today Piazza del Mercato

The large oil painting with oxen, which stands out on the wall of the mayor's office, was painted in 1875 by Ernesto Freguglia. Known painter at that time, but unknown to Umbertide today.

Yet Freguglia lived in our city for twenty-five years, moving there from Rome in 1874. He lived first in via Cibo, then in via Petrogalli which then skirted the village of San Giovanni and finally in via Cavour, at number 64, where the last aged 74 died. day of 1899. He is buried in our cemetery.

The good artist was born in Sabbionello di Copparo, in the municipality of Ferrara, on December 20, 1825. A pupil of the Ferrarese painter Guseppe Tamarozzi, he had studied at the school of drawing and figure in the university of his city. He had therefore been in Florence where we find him in 1853 among the various copyists of the Uffizi (here he reproduced a “landscape by Jean Baptiste Fierce de Roven”). He then moved to Rome, in 1856, entering the studio of the painter and restorer Alessandro Mantovani, also from Ferrara (some of his valuable works are in the Quirinal Palace). In the 1860s, Freguglia was still active in Rome where he participated in the complete renovation of the decorations, between 1863 and 1867, of the church of Santa Lucia del Gonfalone in via dei Banchi Vecchi, together with Salvatore Rotani, under the direction by the well-known Roman painter Cesare Mariani. Between 1870 and 1876, he collaborated with Alessandro Mantovani in the decoration of the Nuova Loggia Pia in the Vatican, giving "proof of uncommon skill in following Raphaelesque concepts". In 1876 he donated one of his paintings to the municipality of Ferrara. He exhibited in this city in 1875, 1877 and 1899. A couple of his suggestive romantic landscapes, in harmony with the canons of the Roman landscape school, are in the Scutellari collection of the Este city.

Freguglia is a painter of a good level and his works denote profound technical knowledge and a refined taste that goes far beyond the representations of the manner of authors of his period. It is affected by the contemporaneity with the Macchiaioli movement even if, while lingering in  fresh play of lights and colors, he does not neglect to use precise brushstrokes, creating almost photographic representations.

The painting on the wall of the mayor's office, to which we have mentioned, "The cattle market in Fratta", in addition to offering us an extraordinary document of nineteenth-century life - the animated day of the market - provides architectural details of the ancient city that have now disappeared or transformed. In fact, the views of the bridge over the Palace and the open space in front of the Rocca are different, not yet leveled with backfill (a partial restoration of the original conditions was carried out with the recent works in the Park of the Reggia and Piazza del Mercato). Likewise, the Guardabassi post hotel (to the right of the Collegiate Church) no longer exists and was demolished to widen the entrance road to the Piazza. And finally, the Mavarelli palace has a different structure, now also raised in the wing towards the center of the town.

Freguglia - il Tevere al Mulinaccio.tif
Ernesto Freguglia (1874). The Tiber in the "Mulinaccio" area

The other painting we know of, belonging to the Scagnetti collection, in which Ernesto Freguglia depicts a different glimpse of Umbertide is also of great documentary value. The canvas, dated 1874, has the usual delicate line and the richness of details typical of the painter and represents the view from the west side of the castle of Fratta. In the center of the painting, on the edge of the walls, you can see the base of the defense tower which collapsed in the flood of the Tiber in 1610. On the left side you can see some architectural details that have now disappeared. At the bottom right you can see the artificial canal that carried the water of the Carpina, after passing through the Mulinello and the Fornace, to activate the "Mulinaccio" (recently swept away by the flood) under the walls. The area still has this name. Finally, washerwomen, fishermen and people bathing in crystal clear water are represented.

Ernesto Freguglia, an Emilian painter who became Umbertide, loved our city and chose it to live there for a quarter of a century, until his death. From the careful glimpses in which he depicts it, from the care he takes to the most typical details, a relationship of warm familiarity transpires. Bre 2019 of


The article was published in the November issue of "Local Information"


Historical archive research by Amedeo Massetti

Registry card of Ernesto Freguglia
at the Municipality of Umbertide
Cartellino 1.jpg
Cartellino 2.jpg
Giuseppe Savelli


The Mayor of the passage from Fratta to  Umbertide









by Amedeo Massetti


The ceramic bust of Giuseppe Savelli was placed in the town council hall in 1894, when the room was renovated with the installation of new wooden stalls made by all the carpenters of Umbertide. It was placed on a wooden base overhanging the wall at a height of two meters, to the right of the bench of the Giunta, flanked, on the left, by the bust of Antonio Guerrini.

The old furniture in the council chamber, used for 90 years, was replaced by the current one in 1984, when the town hall was renovated. The bust was restored free of charge in 2011 by the Umbertidese artist Antonello Renzini and was relocated in the room adjacent to the City Council.










Doctor Giuseppe Savelli was born in Umbertide on May 16, 1824. Owner, he lived in via Stella at n. 11. He also had a house in Via Diritta (now Via Cibo at no. 13), a house in Rome, and a country residence in Rio on the border between the municipalities of Umbertide and Montone where his studio is still located. its library.

From 1861 he held the position of municipal councilor. From 1863 he will be appointed Mayor. He was mayor of Umbertide several times from 1863 to 1880.

Doctor Savelli was a patriot; during the revolt of the Umbrian populations to the papal government in 1859, he was appointed governor of the provisional administration of Fratta, with the approval of the government of Perugia.

In 1861, as a municipal councilor, he worked with extraordinary commitment for the reconstitution of the musical band, of which he was a member and later very active and authoritative president. He wrote a memorable letter in this regard.

Dr. Giuseppe Savelli was elected Mayor in 1863 (he was therefore the first citizen who ferried Fratta to Umbertide) and will hold this office until May 18, 1868. Then for the whole of 1871 and 1872 he was again mayor. In 1873, for a period, he still appears as mayor.

In his capacity as head of the administration, he worked with sensitivity and foresight to give the municipality, which emerged from the inadequacy of the papal administration, a modern and efficient structure. In 1872 he approved the first public hygiene regulation and the first urban police regulation, which deeply affected the socio-sanitary situation of the time and remain milestones for their relevance.













Giuseppe Savelli died in Umbertide on 6 July 1886. He is buried in the last chapel of the hemicycle

left of the Umbertide cemetery, where there are also the tombs of the Santini family

(his wife was Rosa Santini, daughter of Giuseppe, and his sister Zemira Savelli had married

Gabriele Santini, grandfather of the internationally renowned conductor of the same name).

His brother, Don Flaviano Savelli, was canon and archpriest of the Collegiate.

Giuseppe Savelli is the author of a manuscript history (unfortunately partially destroyed) of the

Savelli family which also includes a pope, Honorius III, who approved the Rule of St. Francis.


Historical research by Amedeo Massetti

1 - Copia.jpg
Reg. Polizia.jpg
Reg. Igiene.jpg
1975. Establishment of the City Council. In
high, on the right of the Giunta, the bust
by Giuseppe Savelli
Mayor Savelli's signature on the poster
announcing the name change
A. Massetti at the presentation of an edition
of the historical calendar of Umbertide
The family crest on the house  
in Rio



Canon of the Collegiate, professor of rhetoric and local historian





curated by Fabio Mariotti











Antonio Guerrini had the education and upbringing of youth very much at heart, for which he dedicated his entire life.

He was born in Fratta in 1779 by Giovan Battista Guerrini and Anna Maria Cassoni. From his earliest years he showed the beautiful qualities of his soul. His first teachers were two former Spanish Jesuits, Father Sebastiano Re and Father Gabriele Villalunga. Of a good and honest nature, to better benefit his fellow citizens he embraced the ecclesiastical life, in which he distinguished himself for truly evangelical knowledge and charity.

At the age of fifteen he was designated canon of the Collegiate church, while completing his theological studies in the seminary of Gubbio. At the age of twenty-five he was appointed professor of rhetoric in the public schools of our country. He taught for more than forty years until the last days of his life, with tireless zeal and with great love.

Twice he was called to Perugia, first to exercise the office of rector and moderator of studies in the "Piano Collegio", then to teach philosophy; but both times he refused, thus giving very clear proof of his predilection for his native land.

Antonio Guerrini worked constantly to improve teaching methods in the schools entrusted to him. He compiled a geography accompanied by historical information, designing and building a large terrestrial globe to facilitate its teaching. He also made a large map of Europe, also with indications of the main historical facts.

He cooperated in the formation of the town band, in the erection of a theater (what later became the "Teatro dei Riuniti") and in the establishment of a society of dramatic declamation for the benefit of the poor in need.




















The cover of the book on the history of Fratta and Umbertide

(Anastatic copy on the original of 1883 made by the "Gruppo

Local Editorial "by Digital Editor Umbertide - September 2009)



He wrote a much praised work, a "Theory of Oratory Art and Versification of Tuscany" of which, a summary, was included in the Parisian Journal of the year 1810 and which earned the author a mention by the famous Degerando who, writing in about Mr. Count Giovanni Spada, Deputy Prefect, revealed to him his desire that such a teaching method be adopted by all the universities of the Empire. He also left many Latin and Italian poems.

He was very involved in the research of homeland memories, of which he left a copious collection.

His major work "History of the Land of Fratta now Umbertide from its origins until the year 1845" was completed by the nephew Genesio Perugini printed at the Tipografia Tiberina and published at the expense of the Municipality of Umbertide in 1883.













Antonio Guerrini died on January 21, 1845, at the age of sixty-five. He was buried in the church of Santa Maria della Reggia (Collegiata) where, to perpetuate his memory, the Town Hall placed a marble plaque between the orchestra and the main west door which reads as follows:

"Don Antonio Guerrini for virtue of science, the town hall highly admired - XXI Gennaro MDCCCXXXXV".


The municipal administration dedicated a street to him on January 22, 1880.



- "The illustrious men of Umbertide" by A. Chelli - Umbertide, Tipografia Tiberina - 1888

- "The man in toponymy" by B. Porrozzi - Ed. Pro-loco - 1992

- Biography of prof. Antonio Mezzanotte - Bartelli Typography, Perugia 1845.

Antonio Guerrini.jpg
Coperta libro Guerrini .jpg
Interior of the Collegiate where Don Antonio Guerrini was buried. Below, on the left, the plaque commemorating him.
Antonio Guerrini



Distinguished doctor and scholar of the second half of the 18th century






curated by Fabio Mariotti












Annibale Mariotti was born on 13 September 1738 in Perugia, where his father Prospero, professor of medicine and botany at the local university, had recently moved from Fratta with his already pregnant wife Maddalena Eleonori.

He completed his literary and scientific studies in Perugia and at just sixteen he obtained a doctorate in medicine and philosophy. Shortly afterwards he went to Rome to study physics and mathematics under the guidance of great tutors such as Iaquier and Le-Seur, without neglecting to perfect himself in medical science with the lessons of Saliceti and Gianneschi and in chemistry with Voyole.

Returning to Perugia in 1757, at the age of only nineteen, he was appointed professor of medicine but the desire to enrich his cultural background led him to leave Perugia again.

It was in Bologna, where he took advantage of the classical schools of Beccari, Molinelli and Monte; in Padua where he enriched his already rich knowledge by making friends with the very learned Quirini, Morgagni and other renowned professors, then also in Pisa, admired everywhere for his great erudition. He was offered professorships from Pisa, Pavia and from the same studio in Padua, which he refused for the sake of his native place.





















                     1930s. The post office in piazza Umberto I (now piazza Matteotti)                              The entrance on via Mariotti


Such was by now his fame as a man with great knowledge that he often asked his vote in the most profound medical disputes from the most renowned Colleges of Italy and Count Roberti, writing to Bianconi, said: "Enough to inspire Perugia to remember me that the highly literate Mariotti is its citizen! "

He had relations with the most brilliant geniuses of his time and the most renowned Academies were honored to have him as a partner, such as the Etruscans of Cortona, the Arcadi Augusti, the Leopoldini of Germany and others.

He was even called by the Dresden Court as his doctor, but the call of his native land was too strong for him so he returned to Perugia where, in 1760, he was given again the chair of medicine to which, in 1768, was added that of botany, which had already belonged to her deceased parent.

Annibale Mariotti lived in difficult times but, among the honors and humiliations that he had to bear, he always managed to keep the goodness and kindness of his generous soul.

Proclaimed, on February 5, 1798, the French republic in Perugia, Hannibal was one of the fifteen who formed the provisional government and had the honor, with Dr. Gian Angelo Cocchi, to represent the city in Rome, at the banning of the constitution of the Roman Republic .

On his return to Perugia he was elected "consular prefect" of the Trasimeno Department.

He used authority and knowledge for the benefit of his fellow citizens, working for the release of some nobles imprisoned by the government of the republic and taken to Ancona.

After the fall of the Roman republic, eighteen months after its proclamation, it was the object of slanderous accusations by its enemies. For this he was arrested by the Austro-Arezzo soldiers and taken to Arezzo as a criminal.

After some time, the accusations found to be false, he was released, but the harshness of his imprisonment soon contributed to reducing him to death. Death came on June 10, 1801, after a serious illness of six months. Perugia reserved solemn honors for him and the funeral oration was read by Dr. Luigi Santi, his loyal disciple. He was buried in the church of S. Angelo in Porta Eburnea, where an epigraph recalls his virtues and his knowledge.

Annibale Mariotti wrote about 60 works, including the "History of Perugian literature" and "Perugian pictorial letters" printed in 1788. He also left a manuscript of historical memories of all the places under the ancient dominion of Perugia.


Umbertide, after 1863, dedicated to him the street (formerly vicolo del Pomo) that connects today's Piazza Matteotti with Piazza XXV Aprile.






















The old photos are from the historical photographic archive of the Municipality of Umbertide



- "History of the land of Fratta now Umbertide" by A. Guerrini (completed by G. Perugini) - Umbertide, Tipografia Tiberina - 1883

- "The illustrious men of Umbertide" by A. Chelli - Umbertide, Tipografia Tiberina - 1888

- "The man in toponymy" by B. Porrozzi - Ed. Pro-loco - 1992

Palazzo delle poste.jpg
Via A. Mariotti .JPG
Via Mariotti today from piazza XXV aprile
The plaque of the illustrious personage
Annibale Mariotti
Alessandro Magi Spinetti

Man of arms of the second half of the sixteenth century famous for his courage






curated by Fabio Mariotti    














Pietro Giacomo Petrogalli was born in 1554, from one of the best families in the country. From a young age he showed great courage and firmness of character.

One day, while he was having fun fishing on the Tiber, just below the castle of Montalto, he was insulted by the Perugian Sforza degli Alessandri who, not happy with this, also had him beaten with a stick by one of his agents.






















Peter could not bear the insult and swore to take his revenge.

Alessandri often came to Fratta, bringing with him an escort of warriors. Pietro not being able to suffer so much insolence, after the insult he received, presented himself in front of him and fired a pistol shot on his chest, leaving him dead on the ground. Then, armed with a hatchet, he made his way through the men of arms and managed to get to safety. However, he did not escape the penalty of the ban to which he was condemned, and in April 1580 he was forced to leave his native land.

At first he took refuge in France and took up service in the militias of that country. He immediately distinguished himself for many and beautiful actions of value, for which he received the admiration of the soldiers and had the rank of lieutenant colonel.


















From France he returned to Italy, placing himself at the service of the Grand Duke of Tuscany Ferdinand I and left with the Italian troops who went to Hungary to fight with the emperor, against the Turks. Also on this occasion he proved himself worthy of his name by fighting hard and, after the capture of Chiavarino in which he covered himself with glory, he was appointed captain of a large Italian company, on October 15, 1594.

He was also once again in Hungary paid by the Church, in the expedition commanded by Francesco of the Marquises Del Monte, remaining there until the end of the war, in which he sustained many wounds.

It was then that, ill in health and very weak from a lot of blood shed, he expressed the desire to return to breathe the native air and the pope, with a special pardon of July 26, 1596, not only allowed him to return to his country , but he called him back from the ban and condoned all punishment, although he had not obtained peace from the Alessandri family.

After some time, having recovered in health, he returned to Tuscany and was by the Grand Duke Ferdinando

appointed lieutenant of the Pistoia fortress, then sergeant major of the Livorno garrison and then castellan of the same city.

In 1607 he participated in the capture of the city of Bona in Barberia with the rank of battle sergeant.
















When Ferdinand I died in 1609, he was succeeded in the government by Cosimo II who, having also learned of his expertise and loyalty, on 15 May 1612 appointed him Governor in Valdelsa and sergeant major of all the Tuscan infantry, succeeding the knight Francesco Tucci , also giving it the rich income of Poggio Imperiale.

He also held many other important offices including that of Castellano and Governor of the Fortress of San Miniato.

In 1622 he returned to Fratta again, staying there for a short time, however, because Princess Maddalena, regent of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany, called him to assist Cardinal De 'Medici on the occasion of the Conclave for the election of the new Pope after the death of Gregory XV. Subsequently in 1628 Ferdinando II, Cosimo's son and successor, called him back to the court to occupy the high office of Councilor of State. And that year was fatal to him because one day, while he was leaving the council, he was seized by an aneurysm for which he died at the age of 74.


In ancient times via Petrogalli (formerly via San Giovanni) was located in the so-called Borgo San Giovanni destroyed in the terrible bombing of 25 April 1944. For this reason the city council on 18 December 1960 approved the assignment to Petrogalli of a new road, the crossroad that gives via XX September ends up in via Andreani.



















- "History of the land of Fratta now Umbertide" by A. Guerrini (completed by G. Perugini) - Umbertide, Tipografia Tiberina - 1883

- "The illustrious men of Umbertide" by A. Chelli - Umbertide, Tipografia Tiberina - 1888

- "The man in toponymy" by B. Porrozzi - Ed. Pro-loco - 1992



Mayor of Umbertide from 1892 to 1898 and author

some valuable texts on the history of Fratta


curated by Fabio Mariotti























Francesco Mavarelli was born in Cagli on January 3, 1870 to Vincenzo and Angela Calai. He spent his childhood in the Marche town where his parents had some properties, but the most considerable group of his assets was in Umbertide and consisted of the magnificent palace in via Stella and numerous farms scattered in the surrounding countryside. His first friendships were born along the Via Flaminia, between Cagli and Fossombrone, just twenty kilometers away from each other and divided by the Furlo massif. Here he established sincere and lasting relationships with the most prominent families of the place such as the Vernarecci, the Chiavarelli and others.

He spent the years of childhood and adolescence with his brother Giuseppe born five years before him, but then, on June 14, 1891, the two separated because Giuseppe decided to marry Luigia Menghini and went to live on his own.

We do not know the exact date on which Francesco left Cagli to settle in Umbertide. The personal data sheet only notes that he moved there "as a child". With certainty in Umbertide he completed the cycle of elementary and middle school, and then entered the Collegio della Quercia in Florence where he completed the course of classical studies and graduated in law. He did not practice his profession, absorbed as he was by the administration of his assets and by numerous other commitments. During the holidays he often went to his native places to visit old friends and gladly stopped in Fossombrone at the Chiavarelli family where Marina, who was born on 7 July 1875 and had seen a child, was getting a beautiful girl.

A brilliant and open young man, supported by robust and thoughtful studies, he also faced the political and administrative commitment with great success. In the partial municipal elections of 26 July 1891 he was elected councilor with 110 votes out of 171 voters, while in the general elections of 27 November 1892 and 23 June 1895 he was the first of those elected, respectively with 455 out of 490 voters and 650 votes out of 695 voters. He held the office of mayor of Umbertide for six years, from 4 December 1892 to 3 December 1898.

He was municipal councilor, provincial councilor of the district and president of the Congregation of Charity. A life full of work and responsibility, considering that the young Mavarelli was in his early twenties.

To this must be added the intense historical and literary commitment on some aspects of city life conducted with scrupulous balance and profound competence, confirming a school education approached with seriousness and conviction.














"Historical news and praise on the Company of disciplines of Santa Maria Nuova and Santa Croce in the Land of Fratta", was his first work published in 1899 and dedicated to his wife. Professor Augusto Vernarecci, Fossombrone's friend, informs us that the work was examined and praised by a competent and severe judge such as Giuseppe Mazzatinti.

The second historical commitment was that of "The Art of Blacksmiths in the Land of Fratta", published posthumously in 1901. The family members entrusted its publication to Vernarecci who accompanied the work with a touching premise that we report in its entirety.




























On 31 August 1896 he married Marina, the girl from Fossombrone to whom he was now tied by a deep affection. The wedding was celebrated in the Marche city and on the same day the young landowner moved to the building in via Stella di Umbertide, where Francesco performed the functions of mayor. Then came the children. The first was Zenaide (23 October 1898) and the second Angiola Maria (28 November 1899). The third, Francesca, will be born on 12 December 1900 when her father had been gone for five months.

Suddenly, that Friday evening of 20 July 1900, a gunshot froze the affections, aspirations and projects: Francesco had killed himself. The dramatic event preceded the regicide of Monza by nine days and this was enough to unleash the strangest assumptions about the motive for the gesture, the result of a Homeric epic fantasy. The mirrored customs and transparency of behavior of Francesco did not offer space for gossipy inferences. Thus, the whispers that circulated from alley to alley inside the town and that every day were colored more and more with lively colors and curious details, no less wanted the unfortunate young man to be linked to a Perugian anarchist group within the which his name would have been extracted to assassinate Umberto I. The task would not have been pleasing to the lottery and hence the fatal choice of suicide.

Evidently, those who spread the fable of the failed regicide knew very little about anarchy, contrary to any form of institutional collaboration and any bond, including that of marriage, which represented a limitation to the sacred freedom of the individual. The religion of anarchy was identified only with revolutionary methodology. Francesco, on the other hand, was a man of the institutions, within which he had carried out important functions such as that of mayor and provincial councilor; he had also been awarded the title of knight and his whole life showed respect for the rules and the practice of civil coexistence. No, the story of an alleged anarchist membership definitely does not hold up, if only because in a few days the alternate to kill a king is not found, but it offers us some food for thought.

The elegance of mind of the last Mavarelli; the profound culture that allowed him to dig into the historical past of his people by choosing the two typical strands of existence: religion (historical news and Laudi) and work (The art of blacksmiths); the high prestige gained in the exercise of political offices made him a different character from many of his peers. The hard college life based on tolerance and respect for others, passionate and assimilated study did not belong to youthful parentheses to be thrown into oblivion, but had become a way of life. In a difficult and conflictual period in which many agrarians responded to the spread of the socialist party and the peasant leagues with the expulsion of the colonists from their farms, the sensitivity and convictions of the agrarian Mavarelli were certainly oriented towards different attitudes that did not coincide with the crude and provocative authoritarianism of the law of the strongest practiced by some of his friends.

On the other hand, for many men of the extreme left, the revolution was just around the corner and Gaetano Bresci's threat to the carabinieri who translated him to the prison of Santo Stefano and silenced him because he asked too many questions is symptomatic: " guys like you who should never talk! But soon the revolution will sweep you all away ”. According to the most accredited opinion in the agrarian world, these people had to be answered with the harshest methods, there was no middle ground.

Mavarelli lived intensely the political unease of his time at the crossroads between reaction and revolution, which was, moreover, the unease and embarrassment of all European culture between the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth century, in search of new models of expression and vigorous sources of inspiration and which in very generic terms took the name of Decadentism.

This different way of being and feeling that harbored in the soul of Francis, for the popular imagination that has always loved shortcuts, extremisms and baseless analogies, was enough to make him an anarchist, while he was an enlightened liberal. who would feel at ease a few years later with the policy adopted by Giovanni Giolitti's government. But in 1900 Dronero's deputy was still the politician involved, rightly or wrongly, in the scandal of the Banca Romana and not the leader of the Italy of the "Belle Epoque" (the vile Italy of the vate D'Annunzio) in which the lira he favored gold and in which the most urgent reforms in the social field were under way, so much so that the astute Giolitti boasted "of having relegated Marx to the attic".

The profound sensitivity of Francesco Mavarelli made him feel the contrast between the times and his beliefs in a nagging way, giving him the feeling of being born in a wrong period or of being a man out of time. Of course the discomfort deriving from this state of affairs was not a reason for taking one's life, even if the gesture would have been consistent for a certain fringe of Decadents, but it certainly determined the climate in which the secret anguish that had tormented Francis for some time matured. . The expression is used by Vernarecci in the preface to Dell'Arte dei Fabbri, already mentioned above, and it certainly came from the mouths of his closest family members, his wife and mother, who intended to firmly exclude any form of depression of their joint.

A person's secret anguish belongs to the mystery of life and death which must be treated with the utmost respect. We will never know the triggering reason for suicide, nor are we interested in knowing it.

Five months later Francesca was born who, at least in the name, revived the memory of her father.

The figure and work of Francesco Mavarelli were publicly commemorated in the session of the City Council on 23 September 1900. Unanimously the councilors decided to parry

in mourning for a month the presidency desk which for six years had been occupied by their unfortunate colleague, to name the town's technical school after Francesco Mavarelli, to suspend the session as a sign of sorrow for the serious loss and solidarity towards family members .













Today the first grade secondary school of Umbertide, what was once the middle school, is named after F. Mavarelli, together with G. Pascoli.


In 1998 the prof. Bruno Porrozzi has published

a volume, edited by the Pro-Loco Umbertide,

with the anastatic copy of the works of Francesco Mavarelli.



“Umbertide in the 20th century 1900 - 1946” by Roberto Sciurpa

- Municipality of Umbertide, 2006



Monk at the Abbey of San Salvatore di Monte Acuto





curated by Fabio Mariotti















San Savino, born in Fratta, the current Umbertide, although a citizen of Perugia, as Umbertide has always been the land of the city of Perugia, can be counted among the Saints of the Diocese since Umbertide has always been part of our Church. This without detracting from the Perugian church which - according to Lancellotti in the manuscript Annals of Perugia - counts him among its saints.

Savino was therefore a monk at the Abbey of San Salvatore di Monte Corona, once known as Monte Acuto and a hermit in this monastery, he died in 1190 after a holy life adorned with heroic virtues that made him consider him already a saint in life.




















The most remote written testimonies, apart from the ancient Camaldolese martyrologists, were the commemorative inscriptions of his prodigies, which could be read in a chapel erected in his honor in 1480 on the provincial road towards Perugia, in the locality of Citerna, on a farm that had belonged to the del Santo family, a farm which until today is still called San Savino. Unfortunately, there is no longer any trace of this chapel and one of its frescoes is also lost, which flanked a Madonna in Maestà, just outside the city, in a place once called Fonte Santa, on the border with the word Sant'Ubaldo.

Di Savino remains famous for the miracle of the cloak, in fact, since it is impossible to ford the Tiber to return to the convent together with two other friars, due to a flood of the river, he spread his cloak - just like the prophet Elijah or the more famous St. Francesco di Paola in the Strait of Messina - and, having climbed over it like a raft with his companions, he was able to return to the monastery.






















His body was buried in a chapel erected on the road that leads from the monastery of San Salvatore to the place where, several centuries later, the Hermitage of Monte Corona will be built, in the same place that had seen him isolated in hermitage for long periods. However, wars and suppressions, first the Napoleonic one and then that of the new unitary state, ruined the chapel, which is currently incorporated into the walls of a villa, completely unrecognizable. Only the toponym, San Savino, still indicates the site of the saint's tomb. Nothing is known of the fate that his relics may have made, almost certainly translated before the ruin of the building. The Camaldolese celebrated the memory of Savino, with the title of Saint, on 18 May.



























The city of Umbertide preserves an ideal portrait of the Saint in the collection of the Illustrious Men of the city and it is also depicted in the large altarpiece of the Transfiguration attributed to Pomarancio, located in the drum of the dome of the Collegiate Church of Santa Maria della Reggia.






“Hagiographic Profiles - The Saints, Blessed, Venerable and

Servants of God of the Eugubine Church "

by Pietro Vispi - Gubbio, 2008



Benefactor, friend of the poor


curated by Fabio Mariotti


Alessandro Magi Spinetti, son of Francesco and Vincenza Mazzaforti, was born in Fratta in 1811. He was the descendant of one of the most important families in our city and dedicated his entire life to doing good works. He was one of the most assiduous supporters of the Congregation of Charity, "friend of all, men, animals and plants". He lived in via Spoletini until 1887, when he moved his residence to Città di Castello.




























He was one of the greatest supporters of the construction of the new hospital in Umbertide for which he donated 1,982 lire in 1883 and 12,848 lire and 55 cents in 1889 for the total sum of 14,830 lire and 55 cents, an enormous sum for those times. Suffice it to say that the Cassa di Risparmio donated 14,200 lire and the Municipality of Umbertide only 431 lire and 82 cents in three payments. These figures are reported, together with the names of all the benefactors, on the marble plaque placed in the entrance of the old hospital.













Alessandro died on April 20, 1890 and at his funeral there was a choral participation of the city in gratitude for the numerous charitable activities carried out. The mayor Francesco Andreani also arranged for the presence at the funeral of the newly reconstituted town band directed by Maestro Massimo Martinelli .





















His remains rest in the city cemetery

just past the main gate, a

left, in a travertine sarcophagus that

reports this epitaph:


“Here lies Alessandro Magi

Spinetti friend of the poor

born on the 24th April 1811.

The Congregation of Charity


Died on 20th April 1890 "


The municipal administration

he dedicated a street to him on March 27, 1951.



- “The man in toponymy” by Bruno Porrozzi - Pro-Loco Association

Umbertide, 1992


- "Two centuries on the march - Umbertide and the band" by Amedeo

Massetti - Petruzzi publisher - Città di Castello, 2008

Ferdinando .jpg
Petro 2.jpg
Pietro G. Petrogalli
Francesco Mavarelli
Libri Mavarelli.jpg
Cop libro Porrozzi.jpg
Umbertide nel secolo XX 1900 - 1946.jpg
San Savino.jpg
Copertina libro Santi - Vispi.jpg
San Savino di Fratta
Ospedale e lapide.jpg


A close collaborator of Pope Benedict XIII, he wrote the original "Istoria delle Perucche"

and contributed to the birth of the "Monte Frumentario" to help the poor of Fratta


curated by Fabio Mariotti











Giuliano Bovicelli was born in Fratta around the mid-1600s. He embraced an ecclesiastical career with commitment and conviction and linked his name to the establishment and financing of Monte Frumentario , which went into full operation in 1724, when Don Giuliano died.

He embellished the church of San Bernardino with rich furnishings and a beautiful statue of the saint.

In his will, with deed of July 27, 1724 by Gabrielli Notaro Romano, he left all his patrimony to the Confraternity of San Bernardino, of which he was a brother, to offer concrete help to the poor of the town, precisely through that Monte Frumentario that he tenaciously wanted.


His ingenuity drew him to the attention of Cardinal Pier Francesco Orsini of Rome, who chose him as his secretary and took him to Benevento, when he was appointed Archbishop of that city "and that he was there in the tearful catastrophe of June 5 1688. A horrible earthquake among so many devastations overturned a large part of the Archbishop's Palace. The Cardinal was thrown from the second floor to the ground. Where, falling, some woods crossing each other saved him from death. A gentleman, who was following him, was horribly crushed; and our Giuliano, it is not known how life escaped! (Antonio Guerrini).

Having become Pope, with the name of Benedict XIII , Orsini retained Don Giuliano at the Roman Curia with important positions, such as that of Prior of the Basilica of San Bartolomeo and Apostolic Protonotary.


It was during his stay in Benevento that Bovicelli wrote his " Istoria delle Perucche ", and the first publication took place in 1722 in that city. It is a work carried out with the utmost commitment and with a rigorous scruple of research that ranges from the ancient testimonies on this ornament, found among the oriental peoples, up to the early years of the 18th century.

The author's aim, however, is not that of a technical, aesthetic or social examination of the wig in general, but more simply a full-bodied reflection on the awkwardness of the wigs that ecclesiastics wore. From the very first lines of his work, Bovicelli explains its aims: “History of the perucche in which their origin, form, abuse and irregularity of those of the Ecclesiastics are shown”. Vanity must have taken the hand of many monsignors, if in the preface the author immediately enters the subject with these expressions:

“Today there are so many Ecclesiastics who wear the perucca; that I have great reason to believe that they are persuaded, at least for the most part, that this foreign ornament is forbidden to them, and that it has nothing in itself that suits the decency of their profession.

In order to portray them, therefore, from their error, I have undertaken this work by the stimulus of some people who are firmly pious and truly zealous in the discipline of the Church; ... it is bad to see that those of the Ecclesiastics are damned by the rules of the Church; and having shown how irregular and monstrous are those of the monks, I answer the objections which the clergymen and monks who adorn themselves may attach. I end up proposing the ways that can be employed to stop the course of this disorder and absolutely remove it from the Church ”.

The preface summarizes the content of the work which had a remarkable success, so much so that two years later, in 1724, an edition was printed also in Milan  (1) .

The exquisite sensitivity of the author realizes that the arguments against the use of wigs by the clergy were also valid for those with which the laity adorned themselves and seems almost to apologize by appealing to the tranquility and serenity of mind of the readers: "Since Most of the proofs of which I am sifting through to combat the proofs of the Ecclesiastics can quite rightly be applied to those of the Laity, and they will easily judge that it is scarcely more permissible for lay people than for ecclesiastics to wear the perucca. However that may be, I pray to God with the language of Tertullian that the peace and grace of Jesus our Lord will fall in abundance on the people who will read this Story with tranquility of mind and who will prefer truth to custom: Haec cum bona pace legentibus, veritatem. consuetudini praeponentibus, pax et gratia a Domino nostra Iesu redundet ”(May the peace and grace of God fall on those who read these lines with serenity and put truth before custom).

In the specific theme, Don Giuliano was aware of the sense of modernity which he helped to anticipate, even if the landing on this shore was not offered to him by a progressive vision, typical of the Enlightenment, but by the ridicule of the anachronistic and continuous carnival that masks exalted.

After 1863 a street was dedicated to him in the historic center of Umbertide, the one that is still called “Il Bocaiolo” today.




















1) Two copies of the book are available at the Vatican Library. One, the one published in Benevento, in the General History Collection - Vol. 6360; the other, the one published in Milan, in CICOGNARA III - pos. 1602.



- "Umbertide in the XVIII century" by Renato Codovini and Roberto Sciurpa - Municipality of Umbertide, 2003

- "History of the Land of Fratta now Umbertide" by Antonio Guerrini, completed by Genesio Perugini - Tipografia Tiberina, Umbertide 1883 (Anastatic copy by the "Local Publishing Group" of Digital Editor srl - Umbertide - 2009).