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Montecatini Val di Cecina

Montecatini Val di Cecina is a small hilltown and comune in the province of Pisa in Tuscany (central Italy). Located approximatively 60km south of Pisa, the medieval town sits on the Poggio la Croce hill overlooking the Cecina Valley and the larger hilltown of Volterra, which lies just 15km away.Local agriculture and the old copper mine provided Montecatini Val di Cecina with a degree of prosperity in the early Middle Ages. Like many Tuscan hilltop towns, its medieval aspect has been preserved precisely because lack of economic development. Today, Montecatini Val di Cecina is enjoying a small economic revival through tourism though on a modest scale.HistoryMontecatini Val di Cecina was first settled by ancient Etruscans, who populated the nearby city of Volterra. Later it served as a Roman look-out post as it overlooks what was a busy Roman road. The castle and tower that dominate the town were built in the Middle Ages by Filippo Belforti, whose family ruled the territory for about a century. By the 11th century, Montecatini Val di Cecina was in the Catholic parish administered from nearby Gabretto. In 1351, the area came under the rule of the Bishop of Volterra. In 1452, it was absorbed into the Republic of Florence (later Grand Duchy of Tuscany), to which it belonged until the unification of Italy in 1861.
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