Right at the centre of Southern Tuscany stands Mount Amiata. Siena, Montalcino, Pienza and Montepulciano, Val d’Orcia, the Crete Senesi, Chiusi, Grosseto and the Maremma, Scansano, Cinigiano, Pitigliano, Saturnia, Sorano, Sovana .. all of them, some world-famous, line up around this prominent, cone-shaped mountain not far from the Mediterranean coast.
This silent volcano quickly rises up to 1738 meters (5702 ft). Its slopes are rich in minerals and water, and they extend into woodlands, pastures and farmland for chestnuts, cereals, fruit and vegetables, olives and grapevines.
Mount Amiata originates one of the finest agricultures worldwide, yet surprisingly it remains almost unknown even to many Italians, if not for its recent mining history and its numerous hot springs.
Once, from around 900 BCE, Mount Amiata stood at the heart of the early Etruscan settlements. The mountain was then venerated as the seat of Tinia, the highest figure in Etruscan mythology and an equivalent to the Roman Jupiter and the Greek Zeus. Later, it was considered the domain of Vertumno, a minor Roman god of seasons, change and plant growth, a sort of Bacchus of his own kind, also called .. Tuniatus !
The small town of Seggiano lies at about 450m (1500 ft) on the north-western slope of the old mountain and some 15 km drive from the peak.
It is renowned for its singular extravergine olive oil made from the local cultivar “Olivastra Seggianese” and it certainly is an interesting little outpost in the upper Maremma towards Siena tucked away right next to Montalcino.
This is where I’m based.
One thought on “TUNIATUS ?”
Hello *Jayko*… Lovely pictures…I love Tuscany and Umbria of the Italian regions.
(I’m organizing a Tuscany dinner, in Milan Europe, next week)
Have a nice week!
Melody Fox (aka the Princess of Rock)