The views from this hill top castle are breathtaking. The Comune of Perugia built the castle in 1312 at the request of the inhabitants of San Martino dei Cerreti, a villa near where the Mongiovino Sanctuary now stands.
The following year, on his return from the embassy in Siena, the governor of Perugia stopped off at Mongiovino and declared that “the area was very important, and that as long as the castle stood it would be of great use to the city” (Pellini 1664). Anyone approaching Perugia from Chiusi or from the lake would be seen from the castle. To populate the castle the Perugia magistrates ordered all the inhabitants of the Nestore valley below to build houses there and to move into them, promising financial incentives in return and threatening sanctions against anyone who didn’t comply.
The most dramatic event in the history of Mongiovino occurred in 1643, when the troops of the papal state, led by Captain Vincenzo della Marra, clashed with Ferdinand II’s Florence army, under the command of his brother Mattias, suffering huge losses. Part of the castle walls and a tall tower with battlements are still standing today. The Santa Maria Assunta church is still in good condition: numerous votive frescoes dating back to the XIV and XV centuries have been rediscovered inside. At the end of the XVI century – the date 1589 can be read beneath a Crucifixion – the brotherhood of the Most Holy Sacrament and the brotherhood of Death renovated the altars, removing or covering the original paintings and lending a more decorative appearance to the church.