MARCHIONESS GAMBAROTTA'S APARTMENT
Lina Raimondi Gambarotta was the last owner of the Castle, where she lived from 1966 to 1987.
She restored the noble floor and brought here her family's collections of artworks and antiquities.
She was a careful keeper of the pompous furnishings to this day present in the ones that were “her own rooms”.
Sculptures, arras, paintings of different styles and from various geographical origins, fireplaces, XVII century floors, and XIV century original ceilings follow one another on the first and second floor of the castle.
The guided tour let you discover her personal apartment: library, chapel, bedroom, dining room, chinese room, tea room, music room and few others.
Professor Flamino Musa (1921-2009) – Partisan Commander, Medical Doctor, Poet, Freemason of the Scottish Rite – is the creator of the Museum.
He travelled a lot in the Anglo-Saxon countries – England, Scotland, United States of America – from which he always came back with some new pieces for his private, English Freemasonry, collection.
The Museum was born in 2002 and it is the first and only of its kind.
The castle has got a long history. While the first construction dates back to the eighth century, the first document we received is dated 1141, when the Malaspina family sold it to the Piacenza Community. However, at that time the castle was a lot smaller.
Later on, in 1258, a rich family from Piacenza, the Landi, bought the territory; they stayed here for a long time, four hundred years, which is considered one of the longest dominations of one same family over a given territory. As a matter of fact, in 1257 Ubertino Landi, the family’s founder, came to Compiano with his army and took power over the Valtaro valley; straight after, he started the construction of Compiano Castle. Seventy years later, the rule over these territories (Valtaro, Valceno and Bardi) was made legal. The Landi ruled for 425 years (1257-1682) and built a little principality. Their rule came to an end with the family’s extinction. The last member of the family, Maria Polissena Landi, who had got married with Gian Andrea II Doria of Genoa, brought her castle, together with all the Landi’s territories, as a dowry to Doria’s Family.
The Doria, who were not interested in these regions, sold it in turn to the Farnese’s Family, who had ambitions over this area. Valtaro and Valceno were the last ones among Parma’s regions that were missing in order to complete the Parma, Piacenza and Guastalla’s Duchy.
However, in 1692 the castle was bought from the Farnese, who made changes to the structure; in fact the wooden walkways were removed and some of the fireplaces were destroyed. Another change they made was the restoration of the roof. The Farnese turned the castle into a prison; this marked the beginning of the castle and the village’s decay. The castle served as a prison for about 200 years and was kept as such also under Napoleonic dominion.
In 1900 the castle was bought by the priest of Compiano, who gave to the Cottolengo Sisters, who turned it into a Boarding Shool. The building served this function until 1963.
In 1966 the Marquise Lina Raimondi Gambarotta bought the Castle and turned it into her private home.
Born in 1903 in the small town of Tortona, from her father Raimondi and her mother Cervini, in 1920 she got married to Piero Gambarotta, a nobleman from Liguria. Around that time they moved to Argentina, where she lived for a good part of her life. Sadly, her husband died shortly after, only seven years since the marriage had been celebrated. Finally, she made her return to Italy and bought the Castle.
From FEBRUARY to DECEMBER:
Sundays, Saturdays, Public Holidays
10:00, 11:00 am
12:00, 2:00, 3:00, 4:00, 5:00, 6:00 pm
JULY, AUGUST: every day
€ 5 reduced fare
BY RESERVATION ONLY FOR
- guided tour in English
- groups more than 15 people
THAT TIME WHEN
It’s late at night and the only visitors at the Castle are the two of us, Juliet and Romeo.
The guide takes us to the last room, hidden inside a tower. I have to bend down and bow, in order to get in.
The guide leaves the room, we remain there alone.
Romeo looks a bit strange. He lets me sit down on the small sofa. Inside the room, everywhere around me, statuettes of little animals: parrots, hippos and tropical fish.
Romeo seizes the most far off statuette.
It’s a green, slightly odd one…what kind of animal is it?
Juliet, this is not a toad. It’s me.
I haven’t done anything but waiting. I knew it that sooner or later you would have arrived. Do you want to make a Prince out of me?
The mouth of the toad stauette is wide open.
I put my hand in there, I grab something, I take a look…it’s a ring!
Inspired by a true story that took place at the Compiano Castle