Main entrance and walls

The historic center of Acquasparta is protected by a wall belonging to the ancient fortified fortress that stood in the place of what is now known as Palazzo Cesi.

The fortress was built to protect the village from the continuous attacks that were organized by Todi, Terni and Spoleto, also due to a certainly attractive geographical position. Then it happened that around the early sixteenth century, after being declared free, Acquasparta was threatened by the expansionist aims of the Ghibellines of Todi, led by Altobello da Chiaravalle. Between 15 and 17 August, Chiaravalle besieged the city walls in order to penetrate the city and conquer it. After settling in the territory of Acquasparta, Chiaravalle, to put its lordship over the feud, imposed the extermination of all the males of the Bentivenga family, even throwing the children out of the windows.

This episode, so bloody, was not forgiven by Pope Alexander VI who sent a contingent of about fifteen thousand men to Acquasparta to bring the territory back under the control of the Apostolic See. The army besieged the country where about eight hundred Ghibellines had taken refuge, in addition to the now exhausted population of months and months of terror and battles. The great imbalance between the two factions (800 Ghibellines on one side, 15,000 soldiers of the Pope on the other) gave birth to a very hard battle that saw the use of almost 3000 pounds of gunpowder, used to break down the walls. When it happened, the Chiaravalle and his followers were lynched by the exhausted population. Altobello, after being dragged along the Corso to the square, was tortured by the people, the Sparviera pulled out his heart and was then beheaded. The head was sent to Todi like a trophy while the body, it seems, was eaten by angry people.

The walls of Acquasparta, at that point, were systematically demolished and the stones sold to those who requested it, thus leaving the country in ruins and practically uninhabited and the territory sold to the Apostolic Chamber.