In the year 1260, Tuscany was engulfed in war. The cities of Florence and Siena were engaged in mutual hostilities. About twenty-five miles from Siena was located the small town of Montalcino, which happened to be a friend and ally of Florence. The Sienese hoped that by staging an attack on Montalcino they might be able to compel the Florentines to send an expedition for its relief–an expedition that, they hoped, they could lure into a trap. To this end, the Sienese government publicly announced their intention to move against Montalcino, and watched to see what the Florentine response would be.