Caspariae perpetua et firma Libertas
Cospaia: An Italian Anarchic and Free Community. How It Started and Ended, How the Economy and Social Life Worked, and What Lessons We Can Learn from its History.
On the border between Umbria and the province of Arezzo, above a gentle rise that serves as a foothill to the Appennines, stands the Village of Cospaia, formerly the capital of the republic or rather the Free State by the same name. From 1440 to 1826, it maintained its autonomy and independence, even though it operated without written laws, without leaders, without militias, and without taxes…
The Republic of Cospaia was an anarchic and free "state" that, for over four centuries, from 1440 to 1826, was recognized and respected as independent by its neighboring states (the Papal States and the Republic of Florence).
Today, we will explore the birth and end of the Free State of Cospaia, how its economy and social life functioned, and what lessons we can learn from this incredible Italian example of anarchist community.
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The birth of Cospaia and its life
The Republic of Cospaia was born by mistake on February 24, 1440. On that day, a concordat was signed between Pope Eugene IV and the Republic of Florence for the sale of certain territories by the Papal States. The coffers were empty, and Eugene IV had no qualms about selling land to cover his numerous expenses.
The officials sent by both parties to mark the new borders between the two states made a blunder. They were instructed to mark the borders between the territories of San Sepolcro and San Giustino, along the Rio water stream. However, there were two Rios: one to the north and one to the south…
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