In ancient times it was on the border between the area settled by the Ligurians (the Magelli tribe, whence the name), the Etruscan and the Gauls. The Roman colonization left sparse traces, as the Mugello was mostly an agricultural area. In the Middle Ages it was home to numerous castles, and was later acquired by the Republic of Florence. Several families of the city built patrician villas there, like those of the Medici in Cafaggiolo and the Trebbio. A more recent event was the creation of an artificial Lake of Bilancino on the Sieve river.