Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

Diocese of Eugubinensis, in the province of Perugia in Umbria (Central Italy ).

The city is situated on the slopes of Monte Ingino, watered by the rushing Camignano, and overlooks a fertile valley. In the neighbourhood are several ferruginous mineral springs. On pre-Roman coins this very ancient place is called Ikvvini or Ikvvins. The Gubbio Tables ( Tabulæ Eugubinæ ) are famous. They are bronze slabs with seven inscriptions, two of which are in Latin, and five in the ancient Umbrian tongue. They were found in 1444 among the ruins of the temple of Jupiter Appeninus near Scheggia; in 1456 were acquired by the city of Gubbio, and inset in the walls of the Palazzo del Podestà. This find gave the first impetus to the study of the ancient Italian dialects. For the inscriptions see Fabretti, "Corpus Inscriptionum Italicarum antiquioris aevi" (Turin, 1857). The Romans called Gubbio "Iguvium", but as early as the fifth century B.C. the form "Eugubium" is met with. From the aforesaid tables we learn that at that time the inhabitants of Eugubium were on bad terms with the neighbouring Tadinum. During the civil war (49 B.C.) Curio, one of Caesar's generals, conquered Gubbio. In the eighth century it became part of the Patrimony of St. Peter together with the duchy of Spoleto. From the twelfth to the fifteenth century it had a population of about 50,000, was organized as a municipality with a podesta and two consuls, and had within its jurisdiction Pergola, Costacciaro, Terra San Abbondio, Cantiano, and other Umbrian villages. It was often at war with Perugia, and its victory in 1151 over Perugia and ten other towns is famous. St. Ubaldo, bishop of the city, directed the campaign. Gubbio favoured the Ghibelline party; however, in 1260 the Guelphs surprised the town, and drove out the Ghibellines, who returned again in 1300 under the leadership of Uguccione della Faggiuola, and Federigo di Montefeltro, whereupon Boniface VIII sent thither his nephew Napoleone Orsini who drove them out once more. Its distance from Rome favoured the growth of the Signoria, or hereditary lordship. The first lord of Gubbio was Bosone Raffaeli (1316-1318) who entertained Dante ; later the Gabrielli family were the Signori, or lords. Giovanni Gabrielli was expelled by Cardinal Albornoz (1354) and the town handed over to a pontifical vicar. In 1381, however, the bishop, Gabriele Gabrielli, succeeded in being appointed pontifical vicar. At his death, his brother Francesco wished to seize the reins of power, but the town rebelled. Francesco called to his aid Florence and the Malatesta, whereupon the city surrendered to the Duke of Urbino (1384), Antonio di Montefeltro, and remained subject to the duchy as long as it existed, save for a few short intervals (Caesar Borgia, 1500; Lorenzo de' Medici, 1516). During all this time, however, Gubbio retained its constitution, and the right to coin its own money. Among the famous citizens are: Bosone Raffaeli, poet and commentator on Dante ; the poet Armannino; Caterina Gabrielli Contarini, a fifteenth-century poetess; the historians Guarniero Berni and Griffolino; the lawyers Giacomo Benedetto and Antonio Concioli; the physician Accoramboni; the botanist Quadramio; the archaeologist Ranghiasci; the painter Oderigi (whom Dante calls "l'onor d'Agobbio") with his disciples Guido Palmerucci, Angioletto d'Agobbio, Martino and Ottaviano Nelli; Federigo Brunori and the miniaturist Angelica Allegrini; also Mastro Giorgio (Giorgio Andreoli) who in the fifteenth century raised to high perfection the art of working in majolica.

Besides the ruins of the temple of Jupiter Appenninus, there has been found at Gubbio an ancient semicircular theatre. In the churches and in the municipal gallery are frescoes and carvings by many eminent masters, natives of the city and elsewhere. The cathedral has some artistically embroidered cinquecento copes. The Palazzo dei Consoli joined to that of the Podestà (1332-1346) is a splendid specimen of Angiolo da Orvieto's work; in the chapel are frescoes by Palmerucci. The ducal palace built by Federigo II, di Montefeltro (1474-1482) is a worthy monument to that accomplished prince's exquisite artistic sense.

The earliest known Bishop of Gubbio is Decentius, to whom Innocent I addressed (416) the well-known reply concerning liturgy and church discipline. St. Gregory the Great (590-604) entrusted to Bishop Gaudiosus of Gubbio the spiritual care of Tadinum, about a mile from the modern Gualdo, which had been long without a bishop of its own. Arsenius of Gubbio (855) together with Nicholas of Anagni opposed the election of Benedict III . Other bishops of Gubbio were St. Rodolfo, honoured for his sanctity by St. Peter Damian ; St. Giovanni II of Lodi (1105), a monk of Fonte Avellana; St. Ubaldo (1160), in whose honour a church was built in 1197, which afterwards belonged to the Franciscans ; Teobaldo, a monk of Fonte Avellana, against whom Emperor Frederick Barbarossa set up as anti-bishop one Bonatto; St Villano (1206); Fra Benvenuto (1278), papal legate to restore peace between Alfonso of Castile and Philip III of France. Cardinals Bembo and Marcello Cervino, afterwards Pope Marcellus II, were also bishops of Gubbio, likewise Alessandro Sperelli (1644), author of many learned works, who restored the cathedral. Gubbio was originally directly subject to the Holy See , but in 1563 became a suffragan of Urbino ; as a result of the resistance begun by Bishop Mariano Savelli it was not until the eighteenth century that Urbino could exercise metropolitan jurisdiction. The see has 65 parishes, 40,200 souls, 7 monasteries for men, 12 convents for women, 3 boarding-schools for boys, and 4 for girls.


More Encyclopedia

The Catholic Encyclopedia is the most comprehensive resource on Catholic teaching, history, and information ever gathered in all of human history. This easy-to-search online version was originally printed in fifteen hardcopy volumes.

Catholic Encyclopedia

Designed to present its readers with the full body of Catholic teaching, the Encyclopedia contains not only precise statements of what the Church has defined, but also an impartial record of different views of acknowledged authority on all disputed questions, national, political or factional. In the determination of the truth the most recent and acknowledged scientific methods are employed, and the results of the latest research in theology, philosophy, history, apologetics, archaeology, and other sciences are given careful consideration.

No one who is interested in human history, past and present, can ignore the Catholic Church, either as an institution which has been the central figure in the civilized world for nearly two thousand years, decisively affecting its destinies, religious, literary, scientific, social and political, or as an existing power whose influence and activity extend to every part of the globe. In the past century the Church has grown both extensively and intensively among English-speaking peoples. Their living interests demand that they should have the means of informing themselves about this vast institution, which, whether they are Catholics or not, affects their fortunes and their destiny.

Copyright © Catholic Encyclopedia. Robert Appleton Company New York, NY. Volume 1: 1907; Volume 2: 1907; Volume 3: 1908; Volume 4: 1908; Volume 5: 1909; Volume 6: 1909; Volume 7: 1910; Volume 8: 1910; Volume 9: 1910; Volume 10: 1911; Volume 11: - 1911; Volume 12: - 1911; Volume 13: - 1912; Volume 14: 1912; Volume 15: 1912

Catholic Online Catholic Encyclopedia Digital version Compiled and Copyright © Catholic Online


Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Ezekiel 37:1-14
1 The hand of Yahweh was on me; he carried me away by ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 107:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9
2 So let them say whom Yahweh redeemed, whom he ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 22:34-40
34 But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for August 22nd, 2014 Image

St. Andrew the Scot
August 22: Archdeacon and companion of St. Donatus. Andrew and his sister, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter