“Piazza Torre di Berta” or Tower of Berta Square is the center of the historic old town of Sansepolcro. It is the setting for the annual “Palio della Balestra” competition. This is part of a large festival that all the townspeople participate in, dressed up in Renaissance costumes. The square bears the name of the old tower that once stood there and has become the symbol of Sansepolcro. It was destroyed during World War II.
The Berta Tower was the most beloved monument in town. It was a bell tower from the 13th century, located in the center of the town’s market square. It marked the hours and the moments of daily life for the townspeople. It was depicted on postcards that came to represent the official image of Sansepolcro. Many people in town still recall the night of the “July snow” on the night between July 30th and 31st when the retreating Germans bombarded the town and destroyed the beloved monument in retaliation, thus depriving Sansepolcro of a “piece of its heart.”
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