Built in the first half of the 13th century in a blend of Romanesque and Gothic styles. The main door is flanked by columns very similar to those that were also on the façade of the Abbey of Saint Mary of Follonica (Abbazia de Santa Maria de Follonica). The stone used is local to the area – limestone and sandstone, worked to create non-uniform light and dark shades, a ‘chiaroscuro’ effect.It is the most important religious building in the village. In 1266, the 223 inhabitants of Montefollonico gathered in the piazza next to the church to swear loyalty in the name of God to the Republic of Siena and to agree a self-imposed fine of 100 lira if that pledge was broken. Inside the church there is a splendid early 17th century altarpiece in stucco made to resemble marble. Inserted within this is a copy of a panel painting by Guidoccio Cozzarelli representing the Madonna and Child with Saints Sebastian andAnthony.

A recently restored fresco on the left wall of the church depicts the Madonna and baby Jesus seated on a throne between Saints Donato and Sigismondo. This was, until the beginning of the last century, covered up by the large canvas next to it, which depicts the birth of John the Baptist and is attributed to Vincenzo Rustici (painted between1615-1625). On the right wall of the church there is a large canvas representing the circumcision of Christ in the presence of Saint John the Evangelist, Saint Lucia and the young Saint John The Baptist, attributed to Vincenzo and Francesco Rustici (circa 1618). Another altar, this one in wood, is present in the side chapel where a 14th century sculpture of Christ on the cross called “the crucifix of Brandano” is exhibited.

Birth of San Giovanni Battista built at the beginning of the 17th century by Vincenzo and Francesco Rustici
Copy of the panel depicting the Madonna with child between San Sebastiano and Sant’Antonio Abate by Guidoccio Cozzarelli, dating back to the second half of the 15th century
Wooden altar of the Transept: central painting Madonna between San Giuseppe and Beato Brandano, lateral angels by a local artist, wooden crucifix called “Crocifisso di Brandano”, work by the master of the Corsignano Crucifix, dating back to 300, depicting Christus Dolens

Brandano: Born in Pretorio (about 9 kilometers from Montefollonico) at the end of the 15th century. He resided in Montefollonico, in front of the church of San Leonardo, as he was married to a mountain girl named Francesca (Checca). A land worker at Podere Sasseto in Montefollonico, he was a blasphemer with a dissolute life. Following an accident at work, while he was hoeing the earth, in the Church of San Leonardo, in front of the crucifix that still exists, he had the conversion. From this moment he began to preach against the Medici of Florence and the Pope. He moved to France and Rome where he wanted to meet the Pope; here the Pope’s Swiss Guards locked him up in a sack and threw him into the Tiber. Brandano miraculously fled while continuing to preach, foreseeing the fall of the Republic of Siena. His poor objects are kept in Siena where he died in 1554.

Fresco depicting the Madonna della Misericordia, dating back to around 1600
Bell tower rebuilt in the second half of the nineteenth century as the previous collapse from its foundations: the four bells date back to 1582, 1870, 1961 and 2022
Fresco depicting the Madonna with child enthroned, between the saints Donato and Sigismondo, by a local artist, dated around 1520
Painting by Ventura Salimbeni representing the trinity dating back to around 1600