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Torri del Benaco - History

The first signs of life in the town date back to the II millennium BC, with the discovery of pile-dwellings and rupestrian inscriptions on Monte Baldo. Like all the towns of Lake Garda after the fall of the Roman Empire, Torri del Benaco suffered invasions by the Goths, Longobards and later the Franks at the end of the 10th century. For this very reason in 905 the king of Italy, Berengario I, decided to build the walls and Towers of Berengario around the town, whose remains can still be seen today. Torri del Benaco is perhaps one of the few towns that has managed to retain its old town centre. The church of San Giovanni, Trinity and S. Gregorio in Pai, date back to the 7th century when Frederick of Barbarossa ruled. The town was later ruled by the Scaligeri family. In 1405 Torri became part of the Republic of Venice and became the headquarters of the Gardesana dell’Acqua. Between 1500 and 1600 its population was cut in half by the plague. In 1866 the town became part of the Kingdom of Italy. As the economy did not flourish many residents were forced to emigrate. In the 1920’s the Gardesana road was widened and the economy slowly began to take off once more. Some of the important people who visited Torri del Benaco were the humanist Domizio Calderini, the botanist Gregorio Rigo, blessed Filippo Malerba and scholar Luigi Eccheli.

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