Title: Ghibellines against Papal State
Work’s Subject: Medieval History of Italy
- Premise -
The Guelphs and Ghibellines were factions supporting the Pope and the Holy Roman Emperor, respectively, in central and northern Italy. During the 12th and 13th centuries, the split between these two parties was a particularly important aspect of the internal policy of the Italian city-states. The struggle for power between the Papacy and the Holy Roman Empire had arisen with the Investiture Conflict which began in 1075 and ended with the Concordat of Worms in 1122, but the division between Guelphs and Ghibellines in Italy persisted to the 15th century.
- Story -
In 1340 did a survey of the history of Umbria, medieval and even more for the city of the dragon. While the absence of the Pope (is the period of exile in Avignon) and the general disinterest of the emperor's angry stubborn factions of the Guelphs and Ghibellines, a significant event happens near Terni: the battle of Colleluna, as saying, for Ternani, the struggle for excellence, the most significant. It was a bloody and brutal battle in which, the municipality in question, is better. The city on the other hand did not accept either taxation or restrictions, claiming his right and his yearning for freedom: " libertatem asserens se habere ", disobeying and not under the jurisdiction of the Papal States. Terni, in those years, underlay legally under the District of St. Pietro in Tuscia, but did not want to be subordinated to and obey the laws of this territory at all costs claimed its independence. However, Terni’s noble Ghibellines, who were the majority in those years, the city took possession and drove off the walls all the families belonging to the Guelph faction, captured the perilous Nuncio's official Heritage of S. Pietro in Tuscia was the one who brought the letters to the pope and imprisoned him in a harsh prison for more than five weeks. Faced with such a belligerent gesture so the pope gave the order to quell such conflicts by force if necessary was precisely by means of the rector of the Patrimony of S. Pietro in Tuscia, Mr. Vigo di San Germano, which also tells us in detail what happened in this battle that had shocked all over Italy, feeding the rebellious spirit of the Ghibellines throughout the peninsula. He wrote about a letter informing the Supreme Pontiff of the events that occurred in that battle. The historians of the era such as Terni (Guelph), Filippo Di Merlino, tell of a glorious victory led by the Captain of the Patrimony of the population of Terni, Giannuccio Castelli II, and the overwhelming defeat suffered by their opponents, a small group of militia and well-armed horsemen who had the bad intention of moving within the confines of Terni territory to try to restore order and obedience, but unfortunately defeated, captured and humiliated by Terni’s faction. In fact, the Terni were aware of the invasion of their territory and they were ready, well-armed and numerically superior to the
very small and modest Papal Battalion.
With regard to a description of the infantry and the knights I will not go on every single character, but give only the general data. The army of the medieval Italian communes were divided into:
- The Fanti: they were the core of the militia, artisans and traders were generally well-equipped and divided into classes: pedites, armed with sword, and finally the lanzalonga or hasta pavesari, who were armed with heavier equipment including high shield that covered his body almost to the bust.
- The Berrovieri: combatants and members of the mounted horses, which were divided into miles of tenants and mercenaries who were real fighters and noble profession.
- Specialists: Balestrari armed combatants like the crossbow, the arcatores armed with bow, and finally the slingers or fundatores procursatorii or spoilers, in practice an embryonic form of Genius.
("All weapons, armor and emblems are faithfully and properly inspired from frescoes, altarpieces, miniated books and carvings of Umbria, Tuscany and high Abruzzo. Among the artists we can mention Giovanni Villani, Pietro Lorenzetti, and various other umbrian artists like as so-called "maestro di Fossa", il maestro di Sant'Alò, Marino from Perugia or "The First Master of the Blessed Clare of Montefalco").
© Giosuè Tacconi illustrator