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Cerreto Guidi

Copyright © Editori dell'Acero Cerreto Guidi

Cerreto Guidi (ZIP code 50050) is 41,4 kilometers far from Firenze, that is the Chief Town of the homonymous province to whom the municipality belongs.

Cerreto Guidi has a population of 9.555 inhabitants (Cerretesi) and a surface of 49,33 square kilometers thus showing a population density of 193,70 inhabitants per square kilometer. It rises 123 metres above the sea level.

The City Hall is located in Via Vittorio Veneto 8, phone ++39 0571 - 9061, fax ++39 0571 - 558878: the E-Mail address is urp@comune.cerreto-guidi.fi.it.

Population: The municipality of Cerreto Guidi had a popolation of 8.953 inhabitants accordingly to the results of the national census made in 1991. After the national census made in 2001 the population was 9.555 inhabitants, thus showing during the years 1991 - 2001 a percentual variation of 6,72% inhabitants.

The inhabitants are distributed in 3.354 families with an average of 2,85 people per family.

The place: The territory of the municipality lies between 13 and 125 metres above sea level.

The altimetric spawn is thus of 112 metres.

Work and workers:There are 398 industrial firms employing 2.213 people that are the 59,11% of the total of the workers. There are 247 service firms employing 619 people that are the 16,53% of the total of the workers. There are also 244 firms employing 679 people that are the 18,14% of the total of the workers. There are also 72 administrative offices emplying 233 workers that are the 6,22% of the total of the workers.

There is a total of 3.744 workers, that are the 39,18% of the inhabitants of the municipality.

Cerreto Guidi rises on a hillock placed in the lower valley of the Arno river, extending from the Montalbano area to the Arno river.

The local economy is mainly based on the production of cereals, grape, olives and on the bovine breeding. There are also numerous industries for the production of shoes, ceiling lamps and materials used to cover the typical wine flask.

The place name comes from the compound of "cerrus", the means "oak-tree", and of the specification "Guidi", with reference to the family of the Guidi's Counts who governed the village for a long.

The birth of the village occurred on the Middle Ages, when it was subdued to the influence of the Guidi's Counts, who built a fortress whose around the community of Cerreto Guidi gathered.

The village developed its economy very quickly, thanks to its position close to the important road called "Via Francigena", which along important trading activities took place.

At the end of the XII-th century the Guidi's Counts sold the village of Cerreto Guidi to the Republic of Florence that annexed it to its domains.

The XIV-th century was characterized by wars and devastations caused by the close powerful cities that wanted to extend their domains in order to get a greater political and economic influence.

After the destruction of a close village, Florence decided to fortify Cerreto Guidi by building an imposing ring of walls, equipped with towers and gates, thanks to which the village escaped from the conflicts occurred on that time.

Copyright © Editori dell'Acero Villa Medicea a Cerreto Guidi

During the XVI-th century the control of Cerreto Guidi was gave to the Medici's family that, in next centuries, made important building works.

At the beginning of the same century the ancient fortifications were partially demolished to allow the building of a very luxuriant and noble residence for the will of Cosimo I of Medici, the so called "Medici's Villa".

Since Cerreto Guidi had to host one of the most beautiful Grand Duke's residences, it was restored and embellished with fine palaces and religius buildings that are admirable still today.

In the middle of the XVII-th century there were almost no traces of the ancient fortifications, of which today it is still possible to see just the gate called "Porta a Palagio", on the north-western side of the town.

A century later the Lorena's Dukes came to the power and in 1781 Pietro Leopoldo of Lorena put the Medici's Villa up for auction that, after numerous passages of property, was bought by the Italian Govern and restored.

In 1861 Cerreto Guidi was annexed to the Reign of Italy by the King Vittorio Emanuele II of Savoia.

Among the most important monuments to see in Cerreto Guidi we point out here the Pieve di San Leonardo (Saint Leonard Parish), the Santuario di Santa Liberata (Saint Free Our Lady Sanctuary) and the Villa Medicea (Medici's Villa).

Among famous people who were born in Cerreto Guidi we remind here the writer Emma Perodi (1850-1918).

Among the numerous celebrations periodically taking place in Cerreto Guidi we point out here the traditional "Palio del Cerro" (Oak-tree Race) held yearly on the Friday before the last Sunday of September and that consists of a historical parade in Medieval costumes evoking the Medieval way of life and a race involving the four quarters in which the town is divided.