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Pienza

Foto © Editori dell'Acero Pienza

Pienza (ZIP code 53026) is 55,6 kilometers far from Siena, that is the Chief Town of the homonymous province to whom the municipality belongs.

Pienza has a population of 2.231 inhabitants (Pientini) and a surface of 122,58 square kilometers thus showing a population density of 18,20 inhabitants per square kilometer. It rises 491 metres above the sea level.

The City Hall is located in Corso il Rossellino 61, phone ++39 0578 - 748502, fax ++39 0578 - 748361: the E-Mail address is sindaco@comunedipienza.it.

Population: The municipality of Pienza had a popolation of 2.330 inhabitants accordingly to the results of the national census made in 1991. After the national census made in 2001 the population was 2.231 inhabitants, thus showing during the years 1991 - 2001 a percentual variation of -4,25% inhabitants.

The inhabitants are distributed in 890 families with an average of 2,51 people per family.

The place: The territory of the municipality lies between 255 and 677 metres above sea level.

The altimetric spawn is thus of 422 metres.

Foto © Editori dell'Acero Palazzo Comunale

Work and workers:There are 73 industrial firms employing 278 people that are the 32,44% of the total of the workers. There are 118 service firms employing 223 people that are the 26,02% of the total of the workers. There are also 95 firms employing 278 people that are the 32,44% of the total of the workers. There are also 37 administrative offices emplying 78 workers that are the 9,10% of the total of the workers.

There is a total of 857 workers, that are the 38,41% of the inhabitants of the municipality.

Pienza rises along the Orcia valley.

The local economy is mainly based on tourist activities, thanks both to the beauty of its monuments and the numerous and qualified hotels.

Since 1459 Pienza took its actual name from the name of Pope Pio II. Before the village was known as "Corsignano".

The first residential settlements in the territory of Pienza go back to the Stone and Bronze Ages, as testified by the numerous archaeological finds dating to the V-th millennium B. C..

Later Piena was populated first by the Etruscans and then by the Romans.

Foto © Editori dell'Acero Chiesa dei Santi Vito e Modesto a Corsignano

During the Middle Ages Pienza was a fortified village. In the next centuries a church, entitled to the Saints Vito and Modesto, and a castle were founded. Around those buildings the first residential settlement formed.

During the XIII-th century the village was under the jurisdiction of the city of Siena. At that time Pienza subdued numerous devastations first by the city of Florence and then by the city of Orvieto.

The period of main economic and population development of Pienza is related to the Piccolomini's family and especially to Enea Silvio Piccolomini, who became Pope in 1458 with the name of Pio II.

The Pope Pio II, who was born in Pienza, decided to transform his birth village into an ideal city, so that Pienza, while keeping its characteristic Medieval features, shows today also the Reinassance ideal canons.

The design of the ideal city was developed by the Florentine architect Bernardo Rosselino (1409-1464), who attended to the building of numerous religious buildings and noble palaces. The works were interrupted in 1464 because of the Pope's death.

During the XVI-th century Pienza subdued periodical besieges by the two cities of Siena and Montalcino and just since 1558 it enjoyed a peaceful period, under the domination of the Grand Duke Cosimo I of Medici.

Since the XVI-th century Pienza entered the Florentine Republic and of it the town shared its sorts and history up to the beginning of the XIX-th century, when occurred the invasion of the territory by the French army leaded by Napoleone Bonaparte.

Foto © Editori dell'Acero Particolare: Piazza Pio II

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

Among the most important monuments to see in Pienza we point out here the Cattedrale (Cathedral), the Chiesa di San Francesco (Saint Francis Church), the Palazzo Piccolomini (Piccolomini Palace), the Palazzo Ammannati (Ammannati Palace), the Palazzo Borgia (Borgia Palace), the Palazzo Comunale (Municipal Palace) and the Museo di Arte Sacra (Museum of Holy Art).

Among the famous people who were born in Pienza we remind here Enea Silvio Piccolomini, Pope Pio II (1405-1464), who was also a good humanist, poet and diplomat. His papacy lasted from 1458 to 1464.

Among the numerous celebrations periodically taking place in Pienza we point out here the traditional "Festival of the Orcia valley" held yearly on July and August. The celebration consists of numerous music, theatral and dancing shows.