The history of Blenio Valley in one castle
|(CH 1903)||E 717930||N 141300||H 403.0|
|(WGS 84)||Long. 8.973||Lat. 46.413|
Archaeological, Historical, Architectural
A first castle is archaeologically confirmed as having stood in the ninth century, and was mentioned in 948 in a document written by Bishop Attone of Vercelli. It was conquered after four days of siege by Frederick Barbarossa in 1176, but was destroyed by the Milanese, as stated by a source from 1224, in the years following the Battle of Legnano in 1176. In fact, archaeological excavations have found traces of fire, large quantities of arrowheads and four trebuchets, a huge and innovative siege machine, of different sizes. When Blenio fell under the control of the Orelli in the thirteenth century, a second, larger castle was built on the ruins of the first during the years from 1230 to 1240. The transfer of ownership to the Visconti of Oleggio after 1340 and to the Pepoli of Bologna in 1380 mark two further stages of development and beautification of the castle. Due to the period of instability following the death of Gian Galeazzo Visconti in 1402, the castle was attacked, looted, burned and systematically razed to the ground in1404.
By bus: from the Biasca station, take the bus towards Biasca Olivone, getting off at the Malvaglia-Rongie stop. Continue in the direction of Semione for about three minutes. By car: From Biasca take the road for Olivone. When you have arrived in Semione, go through the village to the castle. Parking facilities are nearby.
BEZZOLA S., MEYER W., Castello di Serravalle: rapporto preliminare delle ricerche 2002-2004, in Bollettino storico della Svizzera Italiana, 2006, pp. 28-66;
BEZZOLA S., Castello di Serravalle. Campagna di scavo 2005, in Bollettino storico della Svizzera italiana, 2006, pp. 147-155.
BEZZOLA S., Castello di Serravalle - Indagine archeologica nel Ticino medievale, in Archeologia Svizzera, 32, 3, 2009.