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The walls of Lucca and its underground, silent historical witnesses

Discovering the city walls and the legend of Lucida Mansi

Long four kilometers and two hundred meters, at the highest points they reach twelve meters in height, were built between 1513 and 1650 and for half a millennium surround the historical center, are the walls of Lucca, symbol of the city.

Second largest example in Europe of walls built according to the canons of modern fortifications, preserved completely intact, this defensive system holds within itself the Dungeon unknown to most people because, unfortunately, not fully open to visitors.

Present in eight of the eleven bastions, the basements of the city walls were formed for defensive purposes and military. A number of galleries and vaulted very suggestive environments, all different in shape and size, the heart of the Lucca war machine in the middle ages.

Warehouses for guns, cannon balls and gunpowder through their tunnels soldiers were able to come out of the closet without leaving defenseless the bulwark.

Through the "sallies" military lucchesi were able to make quick raids to attack the camp of the besiegers and surprise the enemy hitting behind the troops who attacked the walls, all without having to open the main gates of the city.

During the 19th century the city walls was converted into a pedestrian promenade, widely used even today. Beneath the walls extend large meadows that today represent the main city park and the stage for cultural events of the city.

The legend of Lucida Mansi

Along the perimeter of a portion of the walls is, moreover, the Botanical Garden of Lucca also enveloped by an aura of mystery because legend has it that its pond is haunted by the ghost of Lucida Mansi, young and beautiful lady belonging to one of the most powerful families of Lucca.

The young woman devoted to luxury and worldly life seems to have been particularly vain, one day seeing a wrinkle on her face makes a deal with the devil. For thirty years of youth gave in return to Satan's own soul; at midnight on 14 March 1623 the Devil came to visit the young to honor the Pact. Clutched glossy and took her away in a fiery chariot, then flows into the pond of the Botanical Garden of Lucca. It is said that even today, on full moon nights, you can see Lucida Mansi aboard the carriage on fire around the walls and the Botanic Gardens.

City from the unquestioned medieval charm, a treasure trove of myths and legends Lucca and Lucchesia are definitely a must in a travel itinerary to discover the region Tuscany .