The territory of Impruneta is included in the system of lower hills between the Greve River and the Ema River. This territory slowly slopes down to Florence.
The name, Impruneta, derives from “In Pruinètis” or “In pinètis”. Its history dates back to the Etruscans. The archaeological finds were tied together, to testify the presence of a place of worship, dating back to the 6th century AD.
In the Medieval period, Impruneta became an important town, taking on the leadership of one of the 72 leagues of the Florentine rural area. At the beginning of the 12th century, Florence came into contrast with the power of the nobles in the rural area. At that time, the Rocca of Montebuoni was totally destroyed. This fortress belonged to the Buondelmonti family, who ruled over the entire territory of Impruneta. Furthermore, the Buondelmonti family was in charge of the Pieve di Santa Maria, consecrated in 1060 and famous for the cult of the Virgin, particularly venerated by the Florentines.
The art of “cotto” has been found in this area ever since the Medieval period, due to a natural consequence of the appropriate soil and the proximity to Florence. Over the centuries, in Florence, terracotta had been used for construction, ornaments and objects of art. A notarial act stipulated in 1308 (Florentine style) in Impruneta witnesses the presence of a corporation of “orciolai e mezzinai” (potters and the makers of earthen jugs).
In the 13th century, many families purchased properties in the countryside of Impruneta as well as other towns in the countryside near Florence. The first to do so were the ancient families such as Bardi, Scolari, Adimari, Gherardini, Acciaioli, Rossi and Quaratesi, followed by merchants, professionals and artisans. As time passed, these families established units of property called poderi, which consisted of a farmhouse and some other buildings. They organised their rural property on the so-called sharecropping, a model of farming. The mixed farming, that unites cereal growing with fruit trees, olive trees and vineyards, was by far the prevailing method of cultivation, and has remained so up to this very day. Over the centuries, the hills surrounding Impruneta became covered with villas and important buildings not far from the farmhouses.
From an administrative point of view, after the medieval period, Impruneta became part of Galluzzo, which at the beginning was a jurisdiction of a Podestà and later a municipality.
In 1929, Impruneta was established as a County Town.
During World War II (in July 1944), the town had been seriously damaged by bombing, which killed many citizens and destroyed most of the buildings.
Over the centuries in the territory of Impruneta the evidence of mans’ skilful works stands out. Impruneta can be considered a unique territorial contest, which consists of a collection of Tuscan hills with road networks, buildings, cultivation, pine forests, woods, mines and quarries. The route stems from the proposal to understand all of these landmarks, through a series of stopping points where landscapes and a heritage of great value can be observed.