|How Pietro Micca saved Turin from the French in 1706. Drawing by Alberto Bonis|
Turin downtown resonates with history and anecdotes; and as Turin is a bit like Manhattan with many things to do even for kids, it is easy to get intrigued by the many fascinating stories and museums.
Today, Via Pietro Micca is a diagonal street full of shops connecting Piazza Castello, the castle square, to Piazza Solferino up to Bar Norman, on the way to the Porta Susa station.
The Turin's citadel had the shape of a walled pentagon with cannons placed at the corners to chase any potential intruder.
|old Turin map, the citadel is the pentagon on the bottom left. Courtesy of www.mole24.it|
|The French army besieging Turin in 1706, drawing by Alberto Bonis|
Charles - who will became Charles III of Spain in 1711, supported the Savoy duke because he had organized an anti-France league with Spain, the Netherlands, England and Sweden.
|A small group of French soldiers is making it through one of the main tunnels. Drawing by Alberto Bonis|
He quickly told his mate to leave knowing he might not have enough time to save himself.
Right when the French were hatching down the door, Pietro set on fire the gun powder placed on the other side of the door. By using a short fuse he was sure of catching them but he also knew he wouldn't have enough time to escape...
The tunnel was blocked but unfortunately, Pietro didn't have enough time to walk away and died a hero, setting Turin free from the French!
|Victor Amadeus II of Savoy|
If you are curious to see what weapons were used in the past centuries, don't miss out on the artillery museum located in what remains of the Citadel, in Corso Galileo Ferraris 0.
Here you will see unique historical pieces from 1300 to 1900 (cold war missiles included!); besides firearms, there is also a nice collection of hand weapons of all sorts, and even some prehistorical weapons.
This is one of the oldest museums in Turin and the oldest pieces of its collection were used as realia since 1733, in artillery courses!
You will recognize the place by the Pietro Micca statue!