The village of Roncolla
chosen by Luchino Visconti for a famous TV drama
On the regional road 68, a few kilometers from Volterra, towards San Gimignano, stands the characteristic and delightful village of Roncolla. Perhaps deriving its name from an ancient Runeum, the village still shows the ancient structure of the small walled nucleus, arranged from west to east, on the western end of which rises the eighteenth-century villa, now known as Inghirami. In ancient times the village, which lay at the foot of Mount Ridolfo, was called Roncunula and has always been fairly populated.
Together with Poggio S. Martino (Monte Ridolfo), on 15 June 1654, Roncolla was given a level to Giovan Battista Guarnacci and with a project presented to the Grand Duke. In 1551 it had 150 inhabitants, then in 1745 it passed to 200 inhabitants and in 1833 to 351. It is not known precisely when the village was formed but, in 1236, we find it mentioned among the villas under the jurisdiction of Monte Voltraio.
The housing structures developed along the access road to the village, at the ends, the church and the Inghirami-Campani villa. The lodgings are arranged in a “ribbon”, that is placed on two floors: ground floor used as a shed and stable; first floor intended as a house in mixed masonry with buttresses and barbicans.
The villa, which was a natural setting for the television drama “Portrait of a veiled woman”, and the film by Luchino Visconti “Vaghe stelle dell’Orsa” presents an elaborate terracotta and garden facade with statues, rich portals and a stately gate that closes also the village. Belonging to the eighteenth century to Mario Guarnacci, the villa passed to the Sermolli and then, at the beginning of the nineteenth century, to Luigi Campani who restructured it “in an eclectic style”, as the engineer Campani called it.
The church, dedicated to S. Martino, is the ecclesial building of the village. To be ascribed to the XVII-XVIII century, it has a single nave with a square stone façade, a central portal with a noble coat of arms and a brick bell tower. In 1822, owned by Luigi Campani, the Fattoria in 1940 included a patrimony of 460 hectares and 15 farms. The last Campani, Mrs. Dina Campani, who married Ciro Inghirami, leaves the villa and company to Lodovico Inghirami and his heirs.