The rich history of this region harks back to ancient times, with archaeological evidence of activities related to agriculture and water transport in this area during Roman times. Throughout the Middle Ages until the unification of Italy, Lezzeno endured the same fate as many of the country’s other commune, becoming embroiled in the territorial spats of nearby principalities and caught in the crossfire of European invaders, sometimes siding with the winners and sometimes with the losers. Lezzeno was decidedly on the side of the losers during the Ten Years’ War between Milan and Como in the 12th century, when Germany’s Emperor Barbarossa and his allies burned the village to the ground (as evidenced in charred timbers found during the Palazzo’s recent renovations). The ruins of a tower above the hamlet of Rozzo was just one of the many towers along this side of the lake erected to keep watch for approaching enemy ships (as indeed was the tower of our own Palazzo del Vice Re). In the late 16th century, the courthouse in Lezzeno was the scene of many sensational witchcraft trials. Legend has it that a coven of witches in Lezzeno placed a powerful spell on the young men of Lenno, making them burn with love to the point of death. From the 16th to the 18th century, Lezzeno was under Spanish rule (when the Palazzo is believed to have been home to the Spanish Viceroy), before being taken by the Austrians, Napoleon’s Empire and then the Austrians again until finally Italy became unified in the 19th century.