Campano Tower and other medieval buildings
The most famous medieval building on Via Calvalca is the Torre dei Caciaioli, now known as Torre del Campano (from the bell that in the late 18th century summoned students to lectures at the university). This is a tall square building with pilasters culminating in a pointed arch in the western front, with smaller pointed arches on the other facades.
Proceeding east you meet many case torri (tower houses): on the north side, after Vicolo Quarantotti there is another tower, with corner pilasters culminating in a pointed arch, from the 12th century; the one beside it is built with an oriental pillar and arches in brickwork that correspond to the floors of the building, indicating it was built in the 13th century.
On the opposite side of the street, on the corner of Via del Tidi is another casa torre with pilasters and, beside it towards the east, a large group of buildings of at least three towers with pilasters built one against the other, between the 12th and early 13th centuries, some with, some without crowning. On the corner of via del Porton Rosso a house built in the mid 1200s has a stone base and pilasters with brick arches at the top.
There were many churches in the area in the middle ages and it was always thronged with people and goods; it attracted the middle and upper classes, who invested here, in fact until the 13th century certain judiciary organs and the salt customs house, the mint and the first synagogue (Jew’s House) were located here.
Moreover, at least since 13th century, there has always been a market here, because the ground floors of the case torri were let to craftsmen and shopkeepers.