http://www.treccani.it/enciclopedia/abb ... Italiana)/Dette ospitalità a Gregorio X e alla sua corte quando si recarono a Lione (1274), e rifugio a Filippo Maria Visconti (1419) quando i suoi nemici lo cercavano per ucciderlo.
Same note in a German dictionary.
Somehow it translates with "(Abbiategrasso was a) refuge to Filippo Maria Visconti (1419) when his enemies were looking for him to kill him." One might think , that in 1419 somebody really attempted to kill him and that Visconti searched safety in Abbiategrasso for a short time, but I think it means "since 1419 he used Abbiategrosso as a stronghold cause of his general fear of sudden attacks".
German wiki notes to the Castello Viscontea in Abbiategrasso: "Visconti-Kastell (italienisch Castello Visconteo), um 1382 von Gian Galeazzo Visconti über einer früheren Festungsanlage erbaut. Filippo Maria Visconti ließ es nach 1438 renovieren und vergrößern. Während seiner früheren Geschichte hatte es als Festung große strategische Bedeutung. Es hat einen viereckigen Grundriss mit Ecktürmen sowie im Inneren Renaissance-Fresken und Graffiti. Der zentrale Hof besitzt einen Portikus."
It was build c. 1382 by Gian Galeazzo above an earlier stronghold. It had in its early history a stronghold-function and it could serve with high security functions, as they were desired by Filippo Maria. In 1438 it was renovated and enlarged.
Italian wiki ..
Filippo Maria Visconti became owner of the castle with the death of Beatrice de Tenda (1418), so it was natural to make a decision in 1419, what the building in future should be good for.Nel 1405, per far fronte alle spese militari sostenute, il duca Giovanni Maria Visconti vendette per 11.000 fiorini d'oro la terra ed il castello di Abbiategrasso alla famiglia di Giovannolo da Vimercate, insieme a Ubertino da Ghiringhelli, Giacomo da Cardano, Giacomo Biglia e Martino Bianchi da Velate. Questi nuovi feudatari, ad ogni modo, detennero solo per breve tempo i possedimenti di Abbiategrasso, dal momento che nel 1411 la città venne occupata dal condottiero Facino Cane, al servizio di Gian Galeazzo Visconti e poi di Giovanni Maria, prendendo quindi possesso di Alessandria, Piacenza e Pavia. Il feudo tornò ai duchi di Milano, che lo passarono a Beatrice di Tenda, già vedova di Facino Cane e moglie poi del duca Filippo Maria Visconti, la quale soggiornò spesso al castello sino al 13 settembre 1418, quando da qui venne trasportata verso il castello di Binasco, dove venne decapitata per tradimento.
Nel 1431 sostò ad Abbiategrasso Bernardino da Siena, ospite del duca di Milano, che lo aveva molto in considerazione.
Page of the city of Abbiategrasso to the Castello Visconteo (automatic translation)
http://www.comune.abbiategrasso.mi.it/S ... e/CastelloHistorical Notes
The current Castello Visconteo replaces the older castle, located near the church of S. Maria Vecchia, which was destroyed by the emperor Frederick Barbarossa in 1167. Strategically located near the Naviglio, it was built at the end of the 13th century, it was enlarged and restructured probably by the will of Azzone Visconti (1329- 1339). In 1354 Galezzo II Visconti donated the fortress to his wife Bianca di Savoia and since then it will be the tradition of the Dukes of Milan to grant the Castle to their wives as a wedding gift. In 1381 with Gian Galezzo the castle was transformed from a defensive fortress into a stately home. It will always be Gian Galezzo who will give birth to his first heir, Giovanni Maria, here in the Castle. The event of 7 September 1388 will be commemorated with the dedication of the Church of "Santa Maria Nascente", now known as S. Maria Nuova. It will be with Filippo Maria, the last heir of the Visconti, that the castle will see its maximum splendor with new decorations, of which only a few frescoes remain in the courtyard and in the internal rooms with the motto "a bon droit", demonstrating its absolute power. On the top floor of the castle, where the prisons were, you can see engraved on the wall the writings and drawings left by political prisoners of the time of the Ambrosina Republic 1447-1450, which ended with the seizure of power by Francesco Sforza. The natural daughter of Filippo Maria (later legitimized) Bianca Maria Visconti married to Francesco Sforza, born and raised here will always have dear this village, so her first heir Galeazzo Maria Sforza who will stay for a long time also to follow the works of the Convent of the Annunciata wanted by him. In the room at the back of the first floor, the date of birth of Gian Galeazzo Maria Sforza, first son of Galeazzo Maria and Bona di Savoia, has been engraved: “June 20, 1469”. Ludovico il Moro, brother of Galeazzo, instead preferred the Castle of Vigevano, having his widowed sister-in-law Bona di Savoia locked up here in Habiate. Gradually the castle lost importance, reducing itself to a fortress, with the end of the Sforza dynasty. ....
Abbiategrasso had the big advantage, that it was connected to the far-reaching water-channel-net, which was often used by Filippo