From the end of the 1400s, a pilgrim walking the Via Francigena would have come across two tabernacles, near Castelfiorentino, frescoed by Florentine painter Benozzo Gozzoli. Near the church of Santi Pietro and Paolo in Coiano, the 21st stop of the Sigerico itinerary between 990 and 994, we find the Tabernacle of Madonna della Tosse. Inside, under the watchful eye of his patron, Messer Grazia di Francesco, Benozzo Gozzoli frescoed the death and annunciation of the Madonna. In front of the ancient Monastero delle Clarisse in Castelfiorentino, is another tabernacle, called the Tabernacle della Visitazione. With its majestic gaze, it depicts the Life of Mary by Benozzo Gozzoli. Today the two tabernacles are found in the Benozzo Gozzoli museum in Castelfiorentino. A museum that offers modern day pilgrims a chance to appreciate them on a deeper historic and spiritual level.
Among those who have walked the Santiago de Compostela road is Saint Verdiana, who undertook the trip with a group of women during the 13th century. There are two precious relics that Saint Verdiana took with her on the Santiago pilgrimage. One is a Celtic “sulphur cross” with braided decorations including Salomon knots, and the other is a small statue made of jet which depicts Saint James (Santiago) with a long tunic, hat with a shell and his walking staff held in his right hand and resting on his shoulder. The Santiago jet, is a magic ornament and is symbol of the pilgrimage as it testifies to how Santiago de Compostela had connected his name to this fossil. The museum of Santa Verdiana, next to the sanctuary, visitors can see these extraordinarily rare relics, in the company of masterpieces by Cimabue and Granacci, illuminated manuscripts from the 13th and 14th centuries, silver pieces and sacred tapestries.