The town is located on a hill with a wonderful view over the Tiber valley. The downstream area near the river was inhabited by the Etruscans, as evidenced by the discovery of remains of settlements.
After the Romans in the IV – V century AD, with the arrival of the Barbarians, the population took refuge in the many caves in the rocky hills. After the caves, people gathered around a fortified settlement on a hill.
The current settlement dates from the mid-fourteenth century, when Berardo Corrado Monaldeschi destroyed the nearby Paterno, and founded a new settlement around the fortress.
But the life of the centre was very troubled, and it was involved in wars between families and between papacy and empire.
At the end of the fifteenth century, Gianfrancesco Monaldeschi died leaving a daughter married to John Savelli who becomes master of the manor. The heritage transmitted through the female line was not appreciated by the other members of the family Monaldeschi who wanted the estate and initiated a challenge to Salvelli. In 1524 Luca Savelli killed Gentile Monaldeschi.
From 1583 to 1636, the fiefdom belonged to the Farnese family who included it in the Duchy of Castro. In 1637, the population, tired of continuous landlord changes and taking advantage of the Farnese debts, “redeemed itself” with 20,000 scudi.
The purchase failed to result in profitability and the population was unable to pay the debt. So, after 60 years it was forced to sell many goods and in 1700 the remainder was sold to the Ravizza family of Orvieto.