THE GUBBIO AREA
Maybe observing this region and more precisely the "Gola del Bottaccione", not far from Gubbio, the scientist Alvarez (Nobel prize for physics in 1966) and his son found the reason of the disappearing of the dinosaurs from the earth.
The formulation of this hypothesis belongs to the 70's, when Alverez discovered, among the rocks of the gorge, a huge quantity of iridium, which could testify an ecological catastrophe caused by the dust produced by an impact between the earth and an enormous meteorite.
Another natural wonder of this area is the Cucco Mountain and its park: a varied landscape formed by gorges, caves, lawns and pastures.
On the sides of the mountain there are valleys digged by streams which flow both on the surface and underground: as, for example, Rio Freddo, which, after a trait on the surface, sinks in the earth, creating lakes in the rocks.
Another characteristic of this mountain is the karst formations: beautiful caves (even accessible for the excursionists), small lakes and torrents form a very charming world.
Man left the sign of his creativity too, building , on the sides of the mountain, beautiful small towns like Costacciaro, Sigillo, Pescia, Pascelupo, Scheggia, Fossato di Vico.
The most famous town of this area s Gubbio, which lays on the stratums of the Monte Igino and dominates the plain.
Gubbio was founded by Umbri and became their capital. It keeps the best witness of this great culture: "Le Tavole Eugubine" (III - I century B.C.), seven bronze tables written in Roman and Etruscan , kept in the museum of the "Consoles' Palaces".
The presence of the "Roman Theatre" (I century A.C.), one of the biggest of its era, testify that this town has also been an important Roman centre.
Gubbio has saved all its witnesses of its Medieval past.
In this town, many craftsmen live and work and are the living testimony of a past we don't want to forget.
He is 88 years old, has a very sweet smile, a great sense of hospitality and owns a real treasure in his joiner's workshop. Alberto, called Albertino, works still using tools which are 100 years old, built by his father and his grandfather. His workshop is an artistic masterpiece, which could be a real museum of ancient professions.
Walking down for a few miles we can meet a man nicknamed Sciabolino. He is a craftsman who represent effectively the our grandparents' working life. He doesn't smile a lot because he is deeply hit by the Government's indifference for his treasures: a water-mill (built at the end of the 19th century) and a sawmill, both still perfectly working.
We have got a third visit to do: The Museum of the Farming Culture at Fossato di Vico. A teacher thought, in order to keep the memory of the man's intelligence alive in his pupils' brains, to collect about 3000 working tools employed in the farming life of the 1600-1950 period. The building where these objects are collected is probably ruined and in a bad state to contain all the tools, but the passionate explanations of Gigi Galassi, the teacher, make us undervalue this lack. This museum lives thanks to his determination and even here we can easily notice the total absence of public aid. Come with us to visit a part of the evolution of man's life and let's save, with our interest, this little jewel!!!
There are several other curiosities in this area.
At Costacciano it exist the UniversitÓ Agrario degli Uomini Originari (Original Men's University of Agricolture). This University owns, at least from 1289, the whole Cucco Mountain and part of the mountains around, for a total amount of about 1700 hectares. This property is undivided, no "original" man has an own piece of the mountain. Only the Costacciano inhabitants are considered "original" men and their family, to be recognised as "original" has to live there at least since the beginning of the last century.
Besides the undivision of the property and the fact that none can use continuously the same land, the other interesting characteristic is that this area is not precluded to whom is not a member of the UniversitÓ Agraria degli Uomini Originari.. In fact the use of some parts of the wood and the mills were previously attributed to the local poor people for free. (A beautiful crusher is still visible there). The "original" men have always managed this area in a way that could seem archaic, but that is, in reality, very modern from a social and environmental point of view.
The nature is still uncontemned even if it has always given its fruits for 8 centuries. The concept of resources' saving and care and a common management of the mountain allowed the existence of a good relationship between man and nature till nowadays.
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