Grancia di Cuna [The Cuna Grange]
The Cuna Grange is one of the best preserved medieval fortified farms, interesting also from the architectural viewpoint. It stands where, already in the 12th century, there existed a "Spedale" that lodged and assisted pilgrims and merchants travelling along the Via Francigena. In the 13th century it became the property of the powerful Hospital of Santa Maria della Scala in Siena, and the building underwent numerous enlargement and remodelling initiatives. In 1314 the new granary was built and the church dedicated to the Santi Giacomo e Cristoforo was remodelled; today it stands just outside the circle of outer walls. The granary was fortified to safeguard the stores of grain and other cereals.
Other famous buildings with similar functions are the Serre Grange at Rapolano, now the site of a Museum, and the Montisi Grange, privately owned. The complex, perfectly preserved, is composed of a small village, the fortified farm and the church. Over the centuries, popes and kings have stayed here, from Urban VI, in 1386, to Martin V, to Paul III. Charles of Lorraine died here in 1640.
Texts by Mara Miniati
English translation by Catherine Frost
Last update 19/gen/2008