A small “borgo”
with a rich Etruscan and medieval history
La Leccia is a very small urban settlement of medieval origins. It is located in the Val di Cornia on the road between Sasso Pisano and Larderello.
on the cusp of old forests of cork trees and holm oaks, in italian “lecci”, which is what gave the name to the town.
Very close to the “borgo”, next to the town’s cemetery, the the Madonna del Libro sanctuary is worth a visit, with its painting by Matteo di Pierantonio de’ Gondi da Leccia. This is also where the milk spring was, already mentioned in documents dating back to the 16th century and credited to an ancient tradition. The story goes that it would give milk to the breastfeeding new mothers who drank its water.
La Leccia is located on the premises of what once was a medieval castle. The castle’s first mention dates back to 1028, and there are only a few buildings and some wall pieces left. It was owned partly by the bishop of Volterra, partly by the Cadolingi counts and the S. Pietro in Palazzuolo monastery in Monteverdi. In 1204, the men in the castle submitted to the municipality of Volterra.
From the road between Sasso Pisano and La Leccia, one can access the excavations to the ancient Bagnone thermal baths. It was a big Etrsucan-Roman thermal complex, used from the 3rd century b.C. until the Late Roman Period, which shows how the geothermal energy in the area has been exploited for millennia.
According to some reliable sources, these are the famous Aquae Populaniae, popular in the Classical Antiquity and documented in the Tabula Itineraria Peutingeriana. The archeological structure is located in a beautiful and pristine natural scenery.