Entry price: € 1.00
Tower Rossenella: from Easter to the 1st of November, on Sundays and public holidays 15-19. On reservation the other day.
Telephone: +39 0522 248413
FAX: +39 0522 248450
Castle of Rossena
According to some historians, Atto Adalberto, great-grandfather of Matilde of Canossa, started construction of the castle in 950, according to others it was erected by means of Bonifacio of Canossa, Matilde's father.
Around 1070 Bonifacio canossa, Duke and Marquee of Tuscany, conceded to the church of Reggio the "Castellum de Rosena" as compensation for the properties received in emphyteusis.
In 1300 the Da Correggio family took hold of the Rossena Castle and except for brief interruptions, kept it 'til 1612. That fort and the tower were subjected to damages caused by the troops of the Ferrara Duke and due to the explosion of the powder warehouse.
The investure of the Da Coregio ceased in 1613 and the feud passed on to Ranuccio Farnese, signore of Parma.
From this time the castle became an important part of the Dukedom of Parma and Piacenza until 1847 when, upon the death of the Duchess Maria Luigia, the castle was united to the Dukedom of Modena and Reggio.
In 1979 the church, already proprietor of the castle, ceded it to the Superior Institute of Matildic Studies as its academic seat for the summers.
The castle, which was restored in 1999, can also be visited inside where some interesting furnishings are conserved.
The beat round and the place where the cisterns were kept can also be visited.
Accompanied visits through the rooms of the castle are also possible.
On clear days, walking along the communication trench you can enjoy splendid scenery.
The tower of Rossenella
The tower, as a fort, rises on the two peaks of a volcanic formation having a unique two-headed profile. It is oriented according to cardinal coordinates, with the long sides facing north and south and the short sides facing east and west. At the foot of the entrance there's a cistern for collecting water, whose rational location permits a saving of thermal energy. The tower is arranged on three floors: the ground floor used to store food didn't have an entrance. On the arrival floor near the entrance, near the entrance, there's a fireplace, and in front of this there once was room for resting and eating for the inhabitants of the tower. The upper floor could be used as a dwelling, constituting the lodgings for the feudal vassals or the captain who defended the post, or as a lookout, allowing for a rest area for the guards. On the ground floor, the opening was made of a single splayed embrasure, while on the eastern side there was a storage room. The windows were equipped with a very small hole defined by slab ashlars, in such a way as to allow for safe observation. Towards the inside, behind the thickness of the wall, a wide opening cut following an anthropomorphic profile consented movement by the armour-bearer. On the southern side, where the rock juts out, two atypical overlapping apertures constituted the bathrooms. Access to the tower was possible through a retractable ladder which, pulled back inside, needed its own space on the long wall. Connection between the floors was through wooden ladders hooked to the stone corbels. What is left of the Rossenella tower are the first two floors and a part of the third.
Source: local Staff Appennino reggiano