Built on the territory of Matilde di Canossa, the castle settlement of Montetortore is one of the oldest ones of the zone. Its boudary geographical position was the cause of hard disputes of territorial belonging between Commune of Modena and of Bologna, and later , in XVI and XVII cent., made the whole territory a place of armed wars, between gangs of brigands and blackguards and of rivalry, with the nearer countries of Bologna and Modena areas. In 1306 the Captains of Montetortore are named in the Book of noble and powerful families: even if they were subjected to Estensi, they rebelled against them in various occasions; in 1460 men of Podesteria compiled the By-laws, that were approved by the Duke Ercole I. The Podesteria originally included the Communes of Villa D'Aiano, Sassomolare, Montetortore, Semelano and Montalto, Montalbano, Ciano and Montequestiolo; in XIV cent. Villa D'Aiano and Sassomolare gave themselves to the Bolognesi and in the XVII cent. Ciano and Montalbano were enfeoffed to marquis Giovanni Battista Barbieri Fontana. It was given as a feud in 1635 to Montecuccoli Laderchi, in 1695 the Podesteria returned under the Estensi's direct dominion. At the moment it is still possible to admire the castle complex, that is consituted by the ruins of the XIII-XIV cent. keep, by the bell tower, by the very recent total restoration of S. Geminiano church, and by the parsonage, everything is inserted in a environmental contest of peerless beauty, very well preserved. The village Dragodena is very interesting, it is composed of valuable buildings with XVI cent. towers and the Maternit� della Vergine oratory; also San Giacomo's house is prized as well, it is a very ancient hospital, dated around XII cent., that actually consists of a later nucleus, that has been recently restored. We have to signalize also the evocative architectonical complex Fontana, with its XV cent. settlement. San Rocco oratory, that was built after the plague in 1630 and inserted in a marvellous landscape context; the settlement of Usignolo, a building complex of the XVI cent., and the Convento delle Braglie.