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Wonder
Wonder  }  Village

Raggiolo

A hidden jewel among the chestnut trees of Pratomagno

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Where is

Toscana

Via Girone, 113, 52010 Raggiolo AR, Italia (583m s.l.m.)

Directions
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What it is and where it is

Raggiolo is a village true to itself: set at the end of a road, it has never been a place of passage, and this has allowed it to remain somewhat isolated from the world, following its own rhythms and traditions. Perhaps this is also why its alleys and stone houses more than call to mind medieval times with castles and lords, they convey a simple and popular atmosphere, linked to ancient crafts.

Why it is special

In fact, Raggiolo is touched by no less than two streams that encouraged the development of milling activity. In recent times, for example, the Morino Mill has been recovered and restored. It immediately jumps to mind that there are certainly no large fields of wheat around here, so one wonders: what was milled here? The answer is in a building near the church: the chestnut ecomuseum. After all, the village is surrounded by chestnut forests. Chestnuts were the mainstay of Raggiolo's economy and life for centuries, so much so that culturally, they still play an essential role today.

Not to be missed

In the past, the harvesting of chestnuts began in October, but their processing was very long: they were dried and then ground into flour. This lasted until December, and throughout the entire period the fires in the dryers never went out. The fire, especially in winter, invites people to gather together and share stories and emotions. In remembrance of this way of life, every year, usually on the last Sunday in October, the "Castagnatura Festival" is held during which people gather together and share products made from chestnuts and their flour. A mouthwatering event seasoned with a somewhat nostalgic sweetness of a difficult yet fascinating life.

Curiosity

Although much more connected to traditional crafts than to more distant history, even Raggiolo retains a reminder of its Medieval past: a section of a mighty masonry that must have supported the ancient castle. However, even this testimony has been clothed in the village's folk traditions, and has become "The Wall of Lost Words," a kind of illustrated stone dictionary that collects dialect words, especially those identifying animals, and their translation into Italian. A monument to a language and culture that is struggling, but still endures.

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Recommended by
Marco Valtriani

Small village standing still in time surrounded by the centuries-old chestnut forests of Pratomagno. Cared for and maintained in the simple style of Casentino mountain villages. Its alleys, its mills, its ancient drying kiln throw you back in time.

Narrated by
Alessandra Lana

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