Palaces walls and monuments



< Indietro

Torre civica con fontana della Mencia

The second half of the XVI century was very useful for Asciano. We came back to the peace and the city dwellers wanted to resume the activities which had been forgotten for years and to restore the economy, complete the structure of the village, which in the XV century had assumed a more complete agglomeration of the highest part where it rose the main road after the Terzo di Sopra (or via Mameli). At that time the town dwellers of Asciano, in order to repair to the disastrous consequences of the invasions, they wanted to rebuild everything which had been destroyed by the barbarians and in this way, with an extraordinary fervour and will of work, the public administrators and some private citizens, supported with a perfect comprehension by the well-to-do-people, who understood people’s desire and organized the embellishment of the agglomerate on the millenarian village. Consequently, the wealthy families repaired their manor-houses(for example Palazzo del Prato of the Spannocchi);the commune repaired the Towers , the circle of walls and the “Bartolomea”, the Hospital and the Nannini their residence. The village had a new guise and also the life came shortly to the dreamed normality. In that time of peace and fraternity some influential people had the idea to build a public clock in the village. The idea, welcomed by the people and the Authority, became real and the community gave a considerable sum for that period in order to build an embattled tower in that corner of the ancient village. Shortly, it was a comforting competition, a generous participation of everyone and each town dweller answered the roll-call in a meritorious way and it was built the Tower of the Mencia, of which the noun came from the very descriptive mask, which is a fine work of sculpture on the Doric basin of onice, who doesn’t care about the two snakes over her head, it gushes out a continuous fresh water. A tombstone in Latin, at the base of the elegant Tower. It remembers the time of the building. It says “for public and private donations, of civil families, of the Town Hall, of the priests and of Tolomei-Scotti-Amidei- Mariotti, all citizens of Asciano, it rose in a free rose, this tower D.H.I.MDLXXXVI”. Surely, until its building the Tower has had its clock, linked to the bell which in the past struck only the hours and the stroke but now it strikes also the half hour . This elegant building is 25 metres high and in the middle of it, under the first order, there is the clock-making castle. After a double order of merlons there is the wrought iron castle which leans the artistic bell which ends with a crossed pennant which signals the atmospheric changing. The building is one of the most elegant so that also Pienza and Buonconvento imitated its structure. It rose quick and proportion over the surrounding roofs with the task to warn the community with its shrill bell, that time goes on and with it also the miseries of the world. It seems that at first the bell didn’t satisfied people’s desire so that in 1846, always thanks to people’s donations. It was built another one, which is the present one, of which the vibrant and harmonious sound is heard all over the group of houses and further. In the present bell you can read the following sentence: “At the expense of the people’s Committee, it was created by Terzeo Rofanelli from Pistoia, with care of the deputy C.P.E. Mancini. A.D. MDCCCXVI”. Here there are different figures: Sant’ Agata, the Virgin Mary, San Giovanni and fine decorations around the bell make the bell outfit very precious. In the patriotic recurrences , in the Patron’s Feast, at the end of the year for the solemnity of the S.S. Crucifix and in every occasion of jubilation, the bell, striking official, gave happiness . The Mencia listens to it and gushes out fresh water or maybe feels forgotten. Before the building of the tower, the Mencia was situated over the niche of the old fountain, where soldiers often were blessed before to go at war, with this sentence: “God blesses you so that you come back victorious”.

< Indietro