The city, than Virgilio it said founded from the mythical Dardano, was probably fortress umbra, last to the Etruscans between the VIII and the WAYS century a.C. of which became important Lucumonia. To the end of IV the century a.C. Roman entered in the alliance, but she does not know when effectively she was occupied. It had the citizenship Roman during the social war and received one colony of Silla. Later on more sure news is not had. Perhaps in the 490 it was taken from the Goti: Free Reappears like common in XI century, fighting with Perugia and the Bishops of Arezzo.
Cortona had splendid life in the communal period, was straight by institutions democratics who gave one calm life to the city. In the 1258 became Episcopal center while Common passed to Lordship under the Ranieri the Country houses, than embellished it and they rendered it flourishing. In the 1409 Ladislao King of Naples took possession of it to sell it in the 1411 to the florentines. Since then it followed the fates of the Granducato of Tuscany.
Situated in province of Arezzo, 650 m. of height, Cortona it is found nearly in means of central Italy, regarding the coasts tyrrhenian and adriatic, to little kilometers from the border line that separates the Tuscany from Umbria. Km 35 from Chianciano Terme and it is caught up comfortably. Constructed on a counterfort of Monte S.Egidio, it is encircled of walls powerful, of rectangular perimeter, levigate from the centuries and the wind, within which the ancient doors in correspondence of the roads are opened that give the plain go up to you tortuously, according to the varied course of the mount.
Along the feature that gives to the plain door to the city, they are filled of olive-trees and marked fields to terrace from walls to dry, between which s' they nest sumptuous villas recinte of lecci, of pines and cypresses, farm houses, monastaries, monumental churches that seems built up without appearing necessity, therefore isolated as they are and therefore perfect in the huge purity of the renaissance line, with cupolas, windows, bell cells, all in clean stone of the place. A landscape that, like all that one of the Tuscany, represents the mirabile fusion of the natural elements and the human work, a lot that old and the new one has become " contemporary " fruit of one same creative action.
The visitor that watches itself around from the high of its walls will see one of the immense and harmonious panoramas of Italy: the fertile, immense plain of the Val di Chiana, sluice to the horizon from mounts of Siena between which they detach stand out Mount Amiata and Mount Cetona and the great mirror of Lake Trasimeno.
The Etruscan of Cortona and testified power from the powerful town-walls, of which enormous remainders remain and whose perimeter, perfectly rebuilding, turns out of 2,880 meters. Most numerous the tombs discovered in the below campaign and between more it celebrates that one called Tanella di Pitagora, of the V sec. a.C., Melone di Camucia and Melone of the Hard one.
Richest the suppellettile conserved in Etruscan rooms of the museum of Palace Country houses, with other precious objects and works of art like the famous chandelier of bronze, decorated to jolt, of the V sec.a.C., recovered in 1840.
The aspect of Cortona is characteristic: steep ways, large labs paved, in a dominated architectonic complex from the serene stone. On the top of the hill dominates the ancient fortress of the Medici. Between the medieval and renaissance palaces, they have particular importance the Civil Palace of the XIII sec., with tower of the XVI sec., Palace Pretorio with the renaissance facade, in which they have center the Museum of the Etruscan Academy, with ancient egyptian, Etruscan collections, Roman and one art gallery with pictures of the Pinturicchio and Luca Signorelli, and one most precious library. Palace Fierli-Petrella of the XV sec., Palace Ferretti of XVIII sec., i renaissances Palaces Mancini-Sernini (said the "Cristofarello"), the villa Passerini (said " the Palazzone ") constructed by G.B. Corporals around to the 1515.
Remarkable between the sacred buildings, the churches of S.Agostino, the end of the '200; of S.Domenico of the XV sec., of S,Francesco, begun from Elia Friar in the 1245 with elements Roman-gotici, the Abbey of Farneta, preRomanesque and that Romanesque one of S.Angelo.
The Basilica Sanctuary of S.Margherita, founded from the same Saint in the XIII sec., but completely rifared in the sec.XIX, with the gothic tomb of the Saint of the 1362. The Church of S.Maria of Thanks to the Calcinaio, of Francisco di George Martini begun in the 1485.
The Church of New, renaissance S.Maria; the Dome constructed during the XVI sec.(the bell tower is of the 1556); the Churches of S.Niccol2o of the XV sec., with one precious one " Gonfalone " painted by Luca Signorelli, of the Jesus, numerous center of the Diocesan Museum with most important pictures, between which more famous " the Annunciation " of the Angelic Blessed soul
Near the Convent of the Cappuccini to the " Cells " risen near the cell is found in which it inhabited S.Francesco d' Assisi. Cortona was native land of the painters Luca Signorelli and Peter from Cortona. Here Gino Severini wsa born. Famous between the students of all the world, the Communal Library and the Etruscan, rich Academy of 22,000 volumes to press, 1.172 parchments, 133 precious incunabula and 633 manuscripts.