“Il Condottiero” is situated on a south-facing hillside approximately 300m from the “Castello di Montecchio”, in an area steeped in history.
“Il Condottiero” or “The Commander” relates to the close ties between Sir John Hawkwood and the Castello, which was awarded to him for his services as a mercenary during the “ Compagnia Bianca del Falco”, by the city of Florence, one of his several masters In Italy.
Sir John Hawkwood (named by Niccolò Macchiavelli as Giovanni l’Acuto) lived there from 1383. He died in Florence in 1394 and was buried with honours in Florence Cathedral .
Following the request of Richard II, his remains where later transferred to England and a monument by Paolo Uccello was installed in 1436 in the interior of the Cathedral.
The precise origins of Montecchio are uncertain: some academics sustain that it dates from Etruscan times, others argue that the original settlement was prehistoric, but the exact origins remain uncertain.
The castle itself was built in the 9th century and was originally called: Castrum Montis Guisponi .
From 1234 to 1394 it changed hands between Florence and Arezzo several times.
In 1774 Montecchio was incorporated within the Municipality of Castiglion Fiorentino.
Thanks to recent restoration work the 30m tower maintains its dominant position overlooking the Valdichiana, a fine example of Medieval fortification and a reflection of the areas rich history.