For the etymology of the name "Panicale" there are various hypotheses: a pan-colis, i.e. "place where one cultivates the panìco" (a cereal similar to mile), hypothesis also reported in the coat of arms of the municipality. Another, more likely, from loaves calet i.e. "place where burn ares to God Pan". Other etymon assumed in the XVII century would be Kalon Pan, from the Greek "where everything is beautiful".
It is assumed that the origin of Panicale is very ancient. In the Middle Ages the history of the castle of Panicale is linked to that of Perugia. The village would be both an important center for the supply of food (bread and meat), is an outpost of Perugia toward the Val di Chiana. In the XIII century it submits to the Lordship of Perugia, even if he had a sufficient autonomy. In 1316 dates back an important fact: it is witnessed, in fact, the first sketch of the compilation of a statute vergato in Latin by notary Pietro di Vannuccio Vannucci, which will be processed and modified over the years 1356 and 1386. drawn up. Subsequently, in 1484, the aforesaid document will be translated into the vernacular for easier understanding to citizens. The city of Perugia, from 1416 to 1424, is dominated by the condottiere Braccio da Montone, which shall exercise their power also on Panicale, which will see the village at the center of a series of dominions, that the assoggetteranno for many years.
During the Renaissance, Panicale is living through a period of economic development, territorial expansion and general welfare, that enables the realisation of several works of art by renowned artists as the Perugino. In 1540 Perugia is conquered by the Pontifical State that will retain control over the area - then Panicale included - up to the Unity of Italy, except for the years of the Napoleonic occupation. Are thus introduced new laws, rules and regulations which will replace the old Statute of 1316.
The XVII century is to Panicale a century of slow decline: in the days of the Eleven and twelve May of 1798, the Napoleonic army enters in Panicale and decreed the suspension of papal power, and in 1860 it assists its annexation to the Kingdom of Italy.
In the heart of the historical center, in Piazza Umberto I, there is a fountain whose construction in travertine dates back to 1473, and was the ancient cistern of the country which also extended under the piazza. Certainly deserve a visit the Collegiate Church of San Michele Arcangelo, the Castle of Montalera and the Museum of the Tulle, entitled to Anita Belleschi Grifoni.
The economy of Panicale and its territory is mainly agricultural: important is the presence of olive groves, spread throughout the area, that provide an oil free of acidity and that represents one of the pillars of the local cuisine. In the woods are asparagus and many varieties of mushrooms. Another important area is that of the handicrafts, by mentioning the rediscovery of the tulle embroidery "Ars Panicalensis". The industrial activity is widespread in the village of Tavernelle with factories ranging from the chemical industry (paint) to the textile from the electronics to that of safes and instruments for closing the doors.