Project Description

Cigognola is a village with 1307 people. It is located in the Oltrepò Pavese, on a hill looking down to the plain side of Scuropasso valley, crossed by the similarly named river and in front of Broni. The hilltop is adorned with a spectacular 13th century castle, just above the village houses. Cigognola is named in the diploma of Frederick Barbarossa in which the western and central territories of the Oltrepò were put under the jurisdiction of Pavia. From this document we can deduce that it must have been a walled centre under the control of a local lord (dominus loci). It later became a seigniory of the powerful Pavian house of Sannazzaro, the main exponent of the Guelphs in Oltrepò, here represented by one of its main branches (the De Cigognola). In 1406 they were forced out by the intrigues of the Pavian Beccaria family, who then took control over the fief. In 1415 the Beccaria had their fief confiscated after they took part in a conspiracy to kill Filippo Maria Visconti. Half of it, including the lands of the Sannazzaro and Codevilla, passed to the Aicardi, but to their heirs, along with the noble title of Counts of Broni, just remained Cigognola with its far territories of Canevino and Albaredo Arnaboldi. The Visconti Aicardi Scaramuzza held the fief of Cigognola, until its extinction in the 18th century, when it passed to Barbara d’Adda and her son Alberico XII Barbiano of Belgioioso, its last feudal lord (in fact, feudalism was abolished in 1797). In Napoleonic times it was acquired by the Gazzaniga and inherited by the Arnaboldi-Gazzaniga up to the current owners, the Brichetto-Arnaboldi.