The Porta Faul in Viterbo is a town gate built in the Middle Ages. It was built in the 15th century after a flood had seriously damaged the earlier gate.
Porta Faul Viterbo
Address and opening times
The Porta Faul is located along the Via Faul, a short walk from Piazza San Lorenzo and Viterbo Cathedral. The gate can always be viewed for free.
History Porta Faul Viterbo
The Porta Faul is larger than the other gates built in the Middle Ages, although it is smaller than later city gates such as the Porta Romana and the Porta Fiorentina.
When the Urcionio stream flooded in 1454, large parts of the city, as well as the last parts of the city wall and the Porta di Valle, which had been constructed not long before, were completely destroyed.
Everything needed to be rebuilt and a new city gate had to be constructed. This was done by adapting an ancient tower and removing its upper half.
Originally, this gate was called Porta Farnesiana, after Alessandro Farnese, but the inhabitants of Viterbo themselves have always used the name Porta Faul since it led to the Valle di Faul.
An inscription on the gate from 1568 refers to Alessandro Farnese, whose coat of arms is also attached to the gate, along with that of the city itself and that of the Pope’s envoy, Ansoino Polo.
The initials F.A.U.L. are also often seen on the various coats of arms on some of the buildings in the city. According to a priest called Annio, Noah had founded four castles, Fanum, Arbanum, Vetulonia and Longola. Out of these castles Viterbo had grown, and from the moment the priest told this story, a globe with the insignia of the four castles was added to the coat of arms of the city.
The tower to the left of the Porta Faul used to be attached to the Porta di Valle and is the tower of the beautiful Galiana, who used to live in the Casa Poscia. This gate was called the Torre Branca and was named after the magistrate who had it built in 1295.
In 1706, a passageway was built next to the gate through which the waters of the Urcionio could flow.