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Villa Basilica

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Inhabitants in 1991: 2.028

The Villa Basilica territory extends for 36,48 square kilometres, occupying the initial part of the valley della Pescia di Collodi, between the high plain of the Pizzorne to the west and the other Appenninici heights to the east. It suffered numerous border modifications over the years: after having lost, in 1883, the districts of Stiappa and Pontito, which were aggregated to the municipality of Vellano in Pistoia, the following year it had to also give up Veneri and Collodi, who were aggregated to the municipality of Pescia, and reached its present day aspect in 1890, when the districts of San Quirico, Medicina, Fibbialla and Aranco were also aggregated to the same municipality.

Villa Basilica mentioned for the first time in 774, was originally a possession of the Bishops of Lucca, until Enrico VI in 1196 put the territory under the direct jurisdiction of the Empire. It returned in possession of Lucca in 1204, Villa Basilica was included in the Vicariate “Terrarum civium et Vallis Lime” comprising twenty six municipalities. When, at the beginning of the XIV century, these municipalities were divided between the Vicariate “Terrarum civium” and that of Valleriana, Villa Basilica was raised to capital of the latter. Conquered in 1429 by the soldiers of Niccolo Fortebracci, in the service of the Fiorentini, in 1437 it was once again consigned to Lucca by the troops of Francesco Sforza. During the Liberation struggles, Villa Basilica was the organisation centre of the partisan groups which infiltrated into the “Todt” organisation, operating to sabotage the formidable defensive system prearranged by the Germans on the crest of the Pizzorne. Facing sad loses the partisans entered Villa Basilica, liberating it in June 1944.

Places to visit:
S. Maria Assunta Romanic parish church built in XII century on a preceding construction. The three nave interior preserves part of the preceding church and an important Crucifix.

Historical info reproduced upon authorization of Regione Toscana - Dipartimento della Presidenza E Affari Legislativi e Giuridici
Translated by Ann Mountford

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