People have always been trying to show their social status through the construction of magnificent houses, as a visible sign of their power. In all societies the building of a Palace " either public or private " has always assumed a greater meaning than the value of the palace itself. 
In early Middle Ages, the construction of a Palace was reserved to the politic, civil or religious power. However, between the 11th and the 12th century also private citizens began to chose for their dwellings different kinds of buildings either than tower-houses.
In documents belonging to that period, the difference was expressed through the words "domus" or "palatium", terms that recalled the ancient Roman civilization, which was greatly admired at that time. In Middle Ages the term "tower-house" didn"t exist, being this kind of dwelling defined as "domus" or "turris". By the modern word "tower-house" we use to define a more complex building than a simple tower, often formed by the union of two towers, so as to result more comfortable for its inhabitants (click here for in-depth info).
In Vicopisano we can still observe some examples of this kind of a building, which are dealt of in this section.