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The farm, il Borghetto di Sant’Angelo a Bibbione, in the township of San Casciano, was doing field work in April of 1978, when some well-formed sandstone rocks were discovered.

This gave a clue that along the hill there might be a treasure. The Archaeological Supervisory was informed, and after careful examination, they decided to dig. In two months an Etruscan and room were brought to light.

The room is perfectly square, 5.30 meters per side, decorated with small sheets of albarese limestone, while the walls of the perimeter are dry belts with rows of drafts of alberese limestone.

The sheets of albarese are not native to the hill of Sant’Angelo, and it is hypothesized that they were transported from nearby. One of these stones weighs around 8000 kilograms, and others weigh more than 2000.

Since rocks this size are non-existent in this area, we presume that they derive from Val d’Elsa, circa 20 km away as the crow flies, and considering the roads and means of transportation available at the time, it is amazing to think how they were transported across the valleys of Elsa, Virginio and Pesa and across at least three ridges (TavarnelleMontespertoli, San Donato in Poggio-San Pancrazio, Montefiridolfi-Sant’Angelo) ending in their final location.

The surprises weren’t finished: during the dig, the inferior part of a large stele (2.15 meters) was also found, weighing approximately 2000 kilograms.Half of it depicts a male figure with a bow, probably a hunter. The top part was never found, but we imagine that it was at least 3.5 meters tall.

In 1992, a class from the middle school, “Ippolito Nievo” of San Casciano, thanks to Prof. Roberto Cacciatori, adopted the tomb, taking care of it and attaching explanatory signs. Today, the stele of the archer is found in the museum Giuliano Ghelli in San Casciano (entry in via Roma 37, info at 055-8256385).

To visit the Etruscan tomb at Sant’Angelo a Bibbione, you exit at Bargino along the “super strada” that goes from Florence to Siena. After traveling a short way on the via Cassia, you take via Collina until you arrive at the church of Collina.

You leave the car there and continue by foot, along a dirt road,. You pass a group of houses and enter a field. Following the signs, shortly you will arrive at the tomb. Tennis shoes are suggested. Entrance is free.

You can also arrive from the small town of Montefiridolfi, by taking via Collina towards Bibbione. A reproduction of the stele created by volunteers of the archaeological group, SIAM Onlus, can be found in San Casciano in Dante Tacci Park, “Il Poggione”.: you can find it by crossing the pathway of piazza Matteotti in San Casciano.

Antonio Taddei