Umbria Handicrafts: Iron and Copper

Umbria Wrought iron detail

The production of wrought iron has been widespread in Umbria since the Middle Ages. Proof of this can be found, both as a structural and decorative element, in ancient palazzos and in the marvelous results in religious buildings, such as the iron gate in the Chapel of the Gonfalon in San Francesco and the one in the Chapel of Saint Bernardine in Perugia Cathedral, in the entrances of period residences and secret gardens. This craft is now being updated by the many workshops that can be found in the region, in particular in Assisi, Citta’ della Pieve, in the villages around Lake Trasimeno, and in the Spoleto and Terni districts.

In addition to these main activities, other very curious ones have developed, such as the one in Gubbio where the local craftsmen reproduce ancient weapons and armor, the manufacture of files and rasps in Villamagina and the production of surgical instruments which have been made in Preci since the 16th century.

At one time, the craft of copper beating was widespread throughout the region; nowadays, the workshops that sell products made using this technique are concentrated in particular in the Magione area, where the master copper beaters excel in the production of beaten, engraved or embossed artifacts.

Umbria Working iron

Some recommended itineraries:
a) San Giustino, Citta’ di Castello, Montone, Gubbio, Assisi, Valtopina, Spello, Bevagna, Bettona

b) Sellano – Villamagina, Norcia, Terni, Otricoli, Todi, Orvieto, Ficulle

c) Magione, Panicale, Citta’ della Pieve, Castiglione del Lago – Sanfatucchio, Tuoro sul Trasimeno, Passignano sul Trasimeno
Courtesy of Umbria 2000