The hamlet of Torre Alfina is a suburb of Acquapendente in the province of Viterbo. The most striking building in the town is the castle with the old medieval tower. Another attractions is the Bosco del Sasseto, which starts right next to this castle.
Torre Alfina Acquapendente
History and description
Torre Alfina was built around a castle. In the 8th century Desiderio, the last King of the Lombards, had the central tower built. After a brother of Charlemagne had settled in Orvieto in 809 and founded the Monaldeschi family, many castles in the area, including Torre Alfina, came under the influence of this family. In 1314 the Monaldeschi were expelled from Torre Alfina by the Ghibelline Filippeschi family. Two years later the Monaldeschi‘s regained control of the entire area around Orvieto.
The mid-15th century saw the castle being attacked by Antonio Colella, captain in the army of the later Duke of Milan, Francesco Sforza. The Monaldeschi‘s gave the captain 200 gold Scudo’s in order to convince him to not destroy the tower.
In 1527, aided by the inhabitants of nearby Trevinano, the town resisted looting by the Neapolitan Fabrizio Maramao. Trevinano is now also a suburb of Acquapendente.
After the 17th century the Monaldeschi family died out and the castles of both Torre Alfina and Trevinano came into the hands of the Marquis Bourbon del Monte.
In 1881 it was acquired by Marquis Edoardo Cahen, who immediately had it restored. The marquis died before the work was completed and, at his own request, was buried in a neo-Gothic mausoleum in the woods surrounding the castle. His son Rodolfo had the architect Giuseppe Partini complete the work and return the castle to its medieval form. He also had the castle halls decorated with works of art acquired during his many travels through Europe.
After Rodolfo‘s death, the castle had several owners.