The operational center of the XXI European Championship will be the city of Sigillo (PG), an Italian town of 2 356 inhabitants in the province of Perugia in Umbria.
The territory of Sigillo, in the pre-Roman era, was inhabited, as Pliny the Elder says (79 AD) in his Naturalis Historia , from the Umbrian population of Suillates ; in imperial times it had the municipium of Suillum , governed by the magistrates “Duoviri”. Crossed by the important Via Flaminia, built in 220 BC, 127 miles from Rome, it took three days to reach it by foot.
Fragments of inscriptions, a few capitals, column drums, suburban villas and tombs bear witness to the considerable extension of the town in Roman times. The Goths of Alaric, in 409 AD, passing through Rome to plunder it (24 August 410 AD), left behind only ruins: over 100,000 people, men, women, old people and children, with ox-drawn carts and horses, undressed and put what they found on fire. The few remaining population, sheltered in the caves and in the woods, still had to suffer the disasters of the twenty-year war between the Byzantines of Narsete and the Goths of Totila, the unfortunate king who died the same evening of the battle, in July of 552 AD, in Caprara, territory of Tadinum.
With the coming of the Lombards, a few years later, its territory was part of the Duchy of Spoleto and the Gastaldato of Nocera, which then with the Franks of Charlemagne transformed into the County of Nocera, in the Duchy of Spoleto. The Latin name changed to Sigillum , the Pieve di S. Andrea from the 7th or 8th century, continued to bear witness to a continuous presence of population.
It was dominated by the Longobard counts of Nocera: we remember, among others, Monaldo, Offredo, Rodolfo and Vico called Lupo (all descendants of the Duke of Spoleto Ildebrando and of the kings of Italy Liutprando, Ansprando and Ildebrando). The emperor Frederick II, leader of the Ghibellines in Italy, coming from Fano in 1230, siding with the Guelph party, destroyed it. In the sec. XIII Perugia tried to extend its dominion in the surrounding territories, rebuilt it in 1274, as an important border castle defended by a mighty fortress, forming the current historical center in the four districts, S. Maria, San Martino, S. Pietro and S. . Andrew.
Contended by the Baglioni of Perugia, Boldrino da Panicale, Azzo dei Castelli, Braccio da Montone, by the Montefeltro of Urbino, in 1500 it was sacked by Cesare Borgia. In the mid-sixteenth century it became part of the Papal States after the famous “SALA WAR”. Among the people they seal when there is a great expense to face, the proverb still remains: “it costs me more than salt in Perugia”. On 14 September 1860 it was annexed to the Kingdom of Italy.
Monuments and places of interest
A charming medieval town, surrounded by beautiful mountains and hills including Val di Ranco and Monte Cucco, it has the Romanesque-Gothic Church of Santa Maria di Scirca, rich in fifteenth-century frescoes by Matteo da Gualdo, as well as the church of Sant’Anna sull ancient Via Flaminia. Very little remains of the fortress now a monastery of the Augustinians from 1547.
Beautiful and impressive churches: St. Augustine, formerly of the Augustinians, present since 1274, rebuilt on a pre-existing thirteenth-century church, dedicated to St. Catherine of Alexandria, with a crypt called “Santa Caterina “: Among other things, it has a wonderful painting of the Annunciation by the painter Ippolito Borghese, formed in the Neapolitan School and a good 18th century Organ by Sebastiano Vici from Montecarotto; the parish church of Sant’Andrea, rebuilt in the 1800s with valuable paintings and furnishings, is furnished by an organ of the Venetian Gaetano Callido of 1793 which replaced a seventeenth-century organ already in the church of the Augustinians and sold in the mid-nineteenth century to the parish church of Pieve di Compresseto.
The Church of Santa Maria della Fraternita dei Disciplinati is interesting, founded in 1329 by the Augustinian friar Nicola da Sigillo of the nearby convent, with the approval of the bishop of Nocera, blessed Alessandro Vincioli (1327-1363). Work is underway to set up a museum of ancient and modern art, while the Roman bridges still bear witness to the grandiose presence of imperial Rome.