Sen. Eugenio Niccolini, Marquis of Camugliano and Ponsacco, was born in Florence in 1853. A noble and rich family. inherits vast properties in the surroundings of Pisa as well as prestigious and ancient buildings in Florence. Of notable importance is the Palazzo Niccolini, built in the first half of the 16th century in the district of Santa Maria Novella and purchased in 1863 by his father, Sen.Lorenzo Niccolini.
He lives a large part of his youth in the beautiful estate of Camugliano, formerly Palazzo Medici, acquired in 1637 by his ancestor Sen. Filippo Niccolini Young with a marked intelligence and ready learning, he will complete his studies graduating in law.
From an early age he attracted the sympathy between the various social groups, which was immediately considered "prince of the gentlemen and Tuscan hunters." He began to hunt the "paretaio" and the "open networks" of his father Lorenzo, then, without 'fatherly authorization, but with the connivance of their old guard, pulled with a shotgun to the birds in the courtyard of the estate, to pass, bigger, in the bog of Bientina, near Camugliano to shoot snipe jumping and ducks all 'appearance.
He tells us in a paper that there were many pans, but then, with a rifle to wand, he soon learned the technique of shooting and that there in the swamp learned the habits of marsh game. Then, having manufactured the first spiked-back rifles, he was, he said, facilitated the "shooting". In 1873, on the 18th of December in Terracina, accompanied by his faithful guard Gosto, he made a record pouch of 164 snipes ...
He was often a guest on the hunt for King Vittorio Emanuele II, King Umberto I and Vittorio Emanuele III in S.Rossore, Castelporziano and also on the mountains in Valsavaranche with ibex and chamois and, on other mountains in Styria, guest of the Archduke Ferdinand of Lorraine, to beats to roosters of mountain with partridges and marmots.
Beautiful episode in a joke to the boar in S.Rossore where, Niccolini present, a capocaccia, a worthy shotgun tasked to finish the wounded animals, killed a wild boar to which he fired after the shooting of S.M. Umberto I. To which Niccolini, to repair the rascal of the guard and to hide the king's "frying pan", said: "Nice shot that Your Majesty has done!" To which the King replied: "Do you take me perhaps for" a ciula ? "
Uncommon man for dialectic ease, goodness of mind and availability to the neediest, he always obtained testimonies of great respect and sympathy, not only from the notables of Tuscany, but also from the people and peasants, including those who worked in its properties. Following the appreciation of the Tuscans and the value for his talents, he was appointed city councilor, and then mayor of the city of Prato.
In 1913 he was elected Senator of the Kingdom of Italy.
A beloved and appreciated politician, he was recognized with great merit for what concerns the proposals and legislative changes in favor of the regional and national agricultural world which, thanks to his high skills in this economic branch, due to the positive and innovative experiences and the results obtained from the careful and profitable administration of its land - from which it derived most of its income - agriculture had considerable benefit and progress.
He was also expert in hunting things that the Duce, during the fascist period, in the thirties he wanted the presidency of the Commission for the new Hunting Law, which was able to enrich the contents for his expertise as an expert hunter and environmentalist.
Passionate and valuable hunter, he devoted himself to hunting, and especially in his Maremma, all the time that the political commitments left him free.
At that time, of poverty and nobility, for his strong talent to be able to live both with refinement and simplicity ... if necessary, he managed to coexist live and survive, without ever submitting to the dangerous bandits who used to frequent the woods of the Maremma, like Domenico Tiburzi, convicted of murder in a fight,
Luciano Fioravanti, for murders and robberies and Biagini Domenico, with nine arrest warrants, guilty of only seven ... murders. At that time, feared by landowners and nobles, which imposed cuts, thefts and sometimes even violence with deadly gunfights.
The Niccolini in a chapter of the book tells a friend an episode in which, often meeting the bandit Tiburzi while he hunted in Maremma woods, describes him as an excellent shooter and great woodcock hunter, aspects that he himself had personally observed, having with Tiburzi sometimes hunted in those woods. It also tells of a particular rifle promised for a service as a gift to Tiburzi, .. but not wanting me here to anticipate the end of the promise, I leave the reader the ability to find out by reading the book ..
He loved hunting and the Maremma; varied and uncontaminated territory, rich in woods, forests and swamps, of Mediterranean scrub, with plains and mountains, with fauna of various species.
In his life he frequently changed places and residences, until he settled in the Forte delle Rocchette, in the Gulf of Castiglione della Pescaia, an evocative place formed by a promontory that creeps for a hundred meters into the Tyrrhenian Sea.
In this town, where Niccolini devoted himself to hunting for many years, he will become a friend and mate of the best and most famous figures of literature, art and nobility of the time: Giosuè Carducci, Gabriele D'Annunzio, Renato Fucini , Fernando Paolieri, Eugenio Cecconi, Cecco Gioli, Mario Puccioni, Luigi Ugolini and many others.
At the foundation in 1906 of Diana magazine by the publisher Vallecchi, with Arturo Renault director, Niccolini will write several articles for the newspaper and will become, for many years, a permanent collaborator, with numerous and competent writings of hunting technique and also of criticism and denunciation of the then first acts of drainage and reclamation of some areas of the Maremma.
For those articles, always full of keen observations and competent hunting suggestions, he immediately had much following and admiration from the readers, but what made him truly famous among a large audience, throughout Italy, was the publication in 1915 of his beautiful book "Hunting Days".
Eugenio Niccolini, Marquis of Camugliano, senator, Maremma hunter and one of the finest scholar, has collected in the book many of his hunting experiences, always truthful, in a nostalgic way addressed to environments that already in those times were changing or disappearing, without renounce lyricism and naturalistic accuracy in the descriptions of the game and woods of that territory. As a true esthete, he is a witness and actor of the real hunting, with assiduous attendance and competent hunting practice.
Not disdaining a careful criticism of man's will to change nature by virtue of progress. He died in Florence in 1939.