The Bondoni and Pastorio Families
The Pastorio Family
Portraits of Smeralda Bedulli and Francesco Pastorio, second half of the 18th century
At least until the end of the 17th century, as long as Castiglione delle Stiviere was a feudal holding and a principality of the Gonzaga, many members of the Pastorio family had an important role in the public life of the town. From the founder Bartolomeo, who came from Padua in the middle of the 15th century in order to be in service to Marquis Rodolfo, to Giovan Giacomo (I), who was at the court of Ferdinando I and Ferdinando II, the last princes of Castiglione, the Pastorios were entrusted with prestigious tasks, including sometimes in government.
As was customary among the aristocracy of that period,
the firstborn sons of the Pastorios were mainly
warriors in the service of the Gonzaga, at whose court they also had ďcourtlyĒ
roles, that is, they were major-domos of the princes, and knights. Some of the
younger sons, who became ecclesiastics, reached responsible positions in the
state. Especially during the Counterreformation, when Castiglione became an
important religious center, chosen by the
Notwithstanding the end of the Gonzaga of Castiglione principality at the beginning of the 18th century, the Pastorios were able to keep their comfortable way of life, thanks to their landed properties and to the silk production. A short but splendid period is recorded particularly between about 1740 to 1789, when the family, taking advantage of the economic renaissance brought by the Teresian period of peace, was able to keep pace with new esthetic patterns and with the enlightenment mentality.
The Bondoni Family
Giuseppe Bondoni in Piazza Ugo DallÚ at Castiglione delle Stiviere, circa 1914
The Bondonis were an ancient
noble family, originally from Lonato (