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Ficarolo

Middle Ages

Although many scholars attribute to Ficarolo very ancient origins, dating back to the Roman period, Ravelli makes its history begin with the tenth century, a period in which the documentation concerning the country is absolutely certain, through a document of 936, with which Bonifacio, second count of Bologna, and Ingelberto, abbot of Nonantola, implemented an exchange of assets, including Ficarolo ("pago Figariole"), at that time belonging to the county of Ferrarae located, together with the Settettini village (today a fraction of Bondeno) , to the left of the Po.

In 970 Ficarolo is remembered as a castle and, soon, the town assumed a role of considerable importance: whether it had been for some time or later became the site of the parish church, it almost immediately absorbed part of the plebana district of Santa Maria di Trenta. That such absorption, although partial, was in place in the tenth century, as demonstrated by the Regentum Bonorum of the Ravenna church: the Fundus Publica, belonging to the church of Santo Stefano di Galito / Galigo, to which the Fundus Bonolitico belonged, borders on opposite sides with the territory of the parish churches of Santa Maria di Ficarolo and San Donato in Pedrurio; this confining is repeated in a 13th century act which refers to the emphyteusis' concessions of the first half of the 11th century.

The town has linked its name to the Rotta di Ficarolo, which in 1152 upset the main course of the Po; it was actually a series of routes that led to the creation of a new branch, which took the name of "Po di Ficarolo" and that became in a few years the main river course. Among the consequences of this disaster, the Settepolesini settlement was on the right bank of the Po.

The fortress of Ficarolo, which controlled the Po along with the twin on the southern bank of the river, the Stellata di Bondeno (still existing today), was besieged by the Venetians during the War of Sale (1482-1484) and capitulated after the strenuous defense of the small garrison against the overwhelming forces of the Serenissima. The expenditure of men and forces certainly facilitated the Venetian enterprise but, writes Vittor Sandi, historian of the Republic, "the purchase was unhappy, since the infection of that area caused almost the entire army to perish". The peace of Bagnolo, which ended the war, however, sanctioned the return of some territories under the Duchy of Ferrara, among which also Ficarolo which therefore became part of the so-called Transpadana Ferrarese.

The country remained under the Este rule until 1598, when the territory of Ferrara passed under the Papal State, including the Ferrarese Transpadana.

(External sources and Wikipedia)

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