Sasso Marconi is in the south-eastern Apennines of Bologna. Its name comes from a rock (Sasso) in the nearby mountains and from the surname of the scientist who invented the wireless telegraph.
In this area there are some beautiful villas: the XV century Villa Fontana, the Villa delle Torrette (near the oratory of Santa Apollonia, which has two Latin inscriptions of 1630) and the Villa Quiete.
The painter Francesco Albani once lived in Villa Quiete; one of the villa's floors has a mark, which is said to be the bloodstain of a dying young member of the Caprara family, fallen here in the XVI century after being wounded.
In the small village of Pontecchio there is the castle de' Rossi, built between 1482 and 1485; illustrious guests of this villa include Pope Julius II in 1507, Pope Paul III in 1541 and the poet Torquato Tasso in 1587.
Another interesting XV century villa of the area is the Villa Fontana, which is known also as the Palazzo Sanuti, from its owner's name; particularly beautiful are the arcades and the fountain.
Villa il Griffone is definitely the most important of the area and is located in the village of Pontecchio; the grounds of this villa are home to the mausoleum of the scientist Guglielmo Marconi. The Villa Griffoni was built by the brothers of the same name at the end of the XVII century, but was largely modified during the following century by the Patuzzi family; in 1895 it was bought by the Marconi family and here Guglielmo carried out his first experiment in wireless telegraphy.
Distances from main Italian cities:
Bologna 10Km Firenze 80Km
A1 exit Sasso Marconi
Trains: Bologna/Porretta Terme/Pistoia railway line
Taxi: autopubbliche tel. 051 842408
Tel-Fax. 051 843511, 051 840802
Piazza dei Martiri, 6 - 40037 Sasso Marconi BO