Cassero and formerly Sistine Mint

This area of the Old Town of Montalto derives its name from a nautical term: the “cassero” is the uppermost part of the ancient vessels. The area is on the top of Monte Patrizio. Its nucleus is inGiacomo Leopardi square. From archived documents, the Sistine Mint – created by Sistus V and active in Montalto between 1587 and 1591 – was located in the Cassero, probably in Via Fabio Biondi near the PortadeiLeoni, well-protected by the city walls and secure from bandit raids. The mint operated effectively and the socio-economic repercussions on citizenry were immediate. The mint was inactive for a period due to the mediocre quality of the alloys and metals available, but then resumed and continued until spring 1591. With the Pope’s death, support for the Mint disappeared. It was dismantled and the materials used for new activities.