Gradara’s Castle History


During the Roman times, Gradara was first a pagus in the countryside of Pesaro, then with the spreading of the Christian religion it became a parish and ended up a medieval village dominated by a huge quadrangular tower with merlons.

Starting from 1283 Gradara is under the rule of the Guelph Malatesta.

Gradara Castle

Giangiotto Malatesta is one of the characters in the story of Paolo e Francesca which tragically ends in this fortress in 1289.

Since 1464, Gradara has been ruled by the Sforzas who must defend it by the Malatesta. Giovanni Sforza, the unfortunate husband of Lucrezia Borgia, has to compete with Valentino.

Gradara CastleFrom 1513 the lords of Gradara are the Della Rovere family and after their extinction the village becomes an uncontested property of the Papal States. the town passes through a period of total immobility under the Church. The Austrian secessionist war (1743-45) does not touch Gradara which instead suffers from the devastations and the sacking carried on by the Napoleonic troops.

The territory is included in the Cisalpine Republic first and in the Italic Reign later. After the fall of Napoleon (1815) it returns under the Church.

Where to stay in Gradara

Hotels, B&Bs, apartments and country houses: search and make reservations here.