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Siena and its legends

As everyone knows, Siena is not washed by any river. Since ancient times, an extensive network of underground aqueducts, called “bottini”, was used to bring water to the citizens. Legend has it that, in the silence, you could hear the sound of flowing water, typical of a river. An underground river, Diana, repeatedly searched and never found.

Wells were actually dug and the astrologers consulted to find Diana. It was the Siena government itself that took on all the burdens of this research. For about two centuries, Diana was sought, but in vain. Nobody has ever found it.

Nowadays the water arrives in Siena through a modern aqueduct, while the ancient loot can even be visited. For information on how to visit the spoils of Siena, see the website

The subsoil of Siena does not however contain only the secret of the Diana river.

It is said that, at the time when the booties were built, it happened that the workers used for underground work, called “guerchi”, escaped from the tunnels, frightened by having seen some creatures that nestled in the darkness of the earth. What they had seen were the omiccioli and the fuggisole. The omiccioli were similar to merry elves. Otherwise, the creatures called fuggisoli appeared as sudden and sudden flashes of light. The evil ones explained these strange apparitions with the fact that the guerchi were paid in wine.

But it is not just the city that holds secrets. Even the Sienese territory participates in the mystery.

Bettino Ricasoli, nicknamed the Iron Baron (Florence, March 9, 1809 – Castello di Brolio, October 23, 1880), was an Italian politician, mayor of Florence and second president of the Council of the Kingdom of Italy after Cavour. Legend has it that during the full moon, around the castle of Brolio, the ghost of the baron is still around, on horseback and with a pack of hunting dogs in tow. The magnificent castle of Brolio can be visited and is very close to Siena. For information visit

Very famous is also the legend of San Galgano, who, frightened by the meeting with the Archangel Michael, threw his sword against a rock and, miraculously, it remained stuck. the young Galgano became a hermit and the sword in the rock still resists in the heart of the beautiful abbey, which you can easily reach from the Hotel Palazzo di Valli.