Castello di Torrechiara: Dedicated to Forbidden Love

Italy is home to some of the most beautiful castles in the world. However, none probably can match the story of Castello di Torrechiara and its scandalous tragedy. While the castle is primarily famous for its owner and his purpose in building it, Castello di Torrechiara is also a gem of medieval architecture. It changed hands many times until the 20th century but the castle was still one of the finest medieval structures in Italy. Seeing its importance, the Italian government made it a national monument in 1911. As an earthquake in 2008 caused the castle significant damage, renovation efforts started immediately. Many parts of the castle were rebuilt according to its original style which lasted for 6 years. Since 2014, the castle has been open to visitors which the castle receives in great numbers.

Castello di Torrechiara

Castello di Torrechiara has 4 rectangular towers with a central courtyard. In addition, all the towers and courtyards have their distinct names and thematic designs. While two towers are named after the coat of arms of the castle’s owners, one is after a chapel and the other is home to the bedroom. Moreover, the castle has some of the most impressive frescoes, paintings, and bedroom chamber decorations among all medieval castles.

Castello di Torrechiara from above

Aside from its architectural and cultural value, Castello di Torrechiara was the result of an infamous forbidden love in the 14th century. The owner of the castle was Pier Maria Rossi, a successful soldier and a member of the nobility. Although Rossi had a wife, the marriage was not of love as medieval marriages seldom were. When he was in Milan, he fell in love with Bianca Pellegrini, a noblewoman who had a spouse as well. Since they both had spouses, they started to meet in secret.

Castello di Torrechiara exterior

As a result, Rossi built Castello di Torrechiara in honor of Bianca and dedicated it to their love, no matter how wrong it is. The couple frequently went to the castle and Rossi made sure that Bianca fell in love with the castle as well. He had a perfect artist draw and paint frescoes all over their bedroom. One of them is a representation of the two searching for each other in a crowded space. Their love was so strong that even when the couple died they buried them next to each other. Centuries have passed since the deaths of the couple, but the castle still stands as an icon of Parma and immortal love.

Castello di Torrechiara interior decor
Castello di Torrechiara painting
Castello di Torrechiara ceiling motifs
Castello di Torrechiara room with fresco
the castle and the walkway
the castle walls
the castle interior
the castle paintings
the castle fresco