Bevagna - (85 Km)
Spello - (75 Km)
Bevagna was originally an Etrusco-Oscan settlement. Around 80-90 BC it became a Roman municipium, called Mevania, in the Augustan Regio VI. It lay on the western branch of the Via Flaminia, 13 km (8 mi) WSW of Forum Flaminii, where the branches rejoin. It is mentioned on several ancient itineraries, following the Vicus Martis Tudertium on the way out of Rome.
In 310 BC the consul Fabius broke the Umbrian forces here; but otherwise it is not mentioned until the 1st century AD. In 69 the army of Vitellius awaited here the advance of Vespasian.
Pastures near the Tinia river and the white oxen of the Clitumnus River (the modern Clitunno) are mentioned by Propertius, whose family was from the area (from Assisium, Hispellum, or Mevania itself): they may refer to Mevania. Mevania is specifically mentioned by the later writers Silius Italicus, Lucan and Statius.
There are important remains of a temple near the north gate, of a theatre built into modern houses in the (misnamed) via dell'Anfiteatro, lesser remains of a second temple in the church of San Vincenzo near the east gate, mosaics belonging to midsized baths in the via Porta Guelfa, and very scanty remains of an amphitheatre at some distance from the modern town. The original walls, which have disappeared, were, according to Pliny (Hist. Nat. xxxv.173), built of unbaked bricks. The town now has a complete circuit of medieval stone walls that are said to be very near, if not identical with, the Roman walls.
After the Lombard conquest, it became the seat of a gastald in the Duchy of Spoleto, and after the year 1000 it was a free commune. In 1152 Frederick Barbarossa set it on fire. In 1249 it was again destroyed by the Count of Aquino. The Trinci family ruled it from 1371 to 1439. Later it was part of the Papal States until the unification of Italy.
Spello rises up between Assisi and Foligno, situated on a spur of the Subasio Mountain above a fertile and well-irrigated plain.
Among the neighbouring cities, this is surely the one which preserves the major number of monuments testifying to the Roman era; for example, the town walls, which later became the foundations for the medieval walls, the ruins of the theatre and the amphitheatre, the thermal baths and the splendid town portals Porta Consolare, Porta Urbica and Porta Venere dating back to the Augustean era. In ascent, you'll arrive at the church of St. Mary Maggiore built Between the 11th and 12th centuries, which, even if it can boast a beautiful facade reconstructed with antique materials in 1644 at the same time as other architectonic modification were undertaken, guards its most precious treasure inside. In fact, the marvellous Baglioni Chapel is to be found on the left-hand side of the nave. with its paintings by Pinturicchio showing the "Annunciation", the "Nativity" scene and the "Dispute at the Temple", among other frescoes by the same painter which are to be found the chapels under the cross vaults and paintings by Perugino on the pilasters of the entrance to the presbytery. Close by, it is possible to visit the church of St. Andrew (13th century), which contains the painting of the "Madonna and the Saints" by Pinturicchio. Don't forget to take a look at the Town Hall in Piazza della Repubblica with its beautiful ogival portico, and the church of St. Laurence with the remains of the older building dating back to the 12th century. Looking out from the ruins of the Castle (14th century) which is situated on top of the hill, one dominates the valley of the Topino river and all of the surrounding hillside. Just outside of the inhabited area you'll find the Romanic church of St. Claudius and the "Chiesa Tonda" which was built during the Renaissance period in the form of a Greek cross with an octagonal cupola.