BELCASTRO

Belcastro is an ancient Medieval centre of Sila Piccola which enjoys a beautiful panoramic position on the Jonic coasts of the Squillace Gulf.

History

Its foundation seems to date back to the Byzantine era (VI century AD), even though recent finds from digs dating back to the Bronze Age, could make one imagine a continuous human settlement beginning in the 2nd Millennium BC.

Historically, certain information sees Belcastro as an Episcopal seat (IX century) during the Byzantine age and a fortified centre already beginning in the VIII century by the name of Geneocastrum. The walls were erected to defend against Saracen attacks, as they were already established in Sicily since '830. The latter finally stormed the village (896) and occupied it for 40 years.

The Byzantines redeemed Belcastro during 936 but had to cede it again with the arrival of the Normans (1065), who assigned the centre to the Faloch family and made Belcastro a county of the Reign.
During this period, the Faloch family alternated power with the Aquino family, to whom the administration of Belcastro passed permanently in 1277. This latter family ruled the centre until 1373, the period when it changed name to Bellocastum (1331).

The rise to power of the Sanseverino family (1373) only lasted a short while due to their insubordination to the crown. Belcastro passed firstly to Count Pietro Paolo of Viterbo (1404) then was sold to the Ruffo family (1427).
From this time on, the fief ended up as a dowry of the Spaniard don Antonio Centelles, who being responsible for the rebellion against the crown, lost all of his assets comprising Belcastro, which then returned to the Spanish Crown (1444).
In 1462 the village was assigned to Enrico of Aragona, son of Ferdinando I, and in 1472 to Ferrante de Guevara, who was part of the Conspiracy of Barons, causing him to lose his patrimony.
The fief went to Giovan Giacomo Trivulzio (22 April 1487), who, when the Franco-Spanish War broke out, decided to line up against Carlo VIII (1497), who then lost the conflict, leaving France on its knees.

In 1500, Belcastro was acquired by Countess Costanza d'Avalos d'Aquino and in the space of a few years, the village passed hands to Alvise d'Aquino (1528), Alfonso d'Avalos (1541), Ferrante d'Aragona (1542), Tommaso de Diano (1548) and Scipione Imperato (1554). Giovan Battista Sersale finally interrupted this dance of power by acquiring Belcastro in 1577 for 80 thousand ducats. His descendants governed until 1673, a period when a terrible earthquake damaged Belcastro (1645).

The Caracciolo family then ascended to power (1673), followed by the Poerio (1714), de Mayda (1746), who ruled until 1755, the year the Poerio family returned.

During 1799, Belcastro adhered to Republican ideals, inaugurating a period of clashes with Cardinal Ruffo's troops, who reclaimed the settlement until 1803. The same year, it returned to the Poerio family who governed until the Unification of Italy (1861).

San Tommaso d'Acquino was born in Belcastro. He was a member of a powerful feudatory who governed the village during the Medieval period.

A visit to the City

The Castle (XIV century) dominates the hills of Belcastro, with its beautiful Mastra Towers. Here one can also admire the ex S. Michele Arcangelo Cathedral (XII-XIII century) and the ancient city walls.

Descending down the beautiful alleyways of the historical centre, one will come across the Pietà Church, which preserves a wooden Byzantine Madonna in its interior (XI century), the 15th century S. Rocco Chapel and Palazzo Poerio, constructed during the '600s by Sersale.

The Byzantine Castle remains situated on the Timpe hills, are also noteworthy, as well as the S. Maria della Sanità Church.
From Belcastro, one can easily reach the Sila National Park, and undertake interesting naturalistic excursions.

Place of interest

- Castello dei Conti d'Aquino
- Palazzo Poerio (1645)
- Cattedrale di S. Michele Arcangelo (XII-XIII sec.)
- Cappella di S. Rocco (XVI sec.)
- Chiesa della Pietà (XVI sec.)
- Rione Castellaci
- Resti del Castello Bizantino sul colle Timpe
- Chiesa della SS. Vergine dell'Annunziata ('400)
- Palazzo Poerio
- Ruderi della Chiesa di S. Maria della Sanità
- Resti della Torre del Crocchio
- Resti della Torre di Magliacane
- Visita di Santa Severina
- Visita di Sersale
- Visita di Zagarise
- Visita di Andali
- Visita di Cropani
- Visita di Petilia Policastro

Museums

- Nessun Museo segnalato

Events

- Patronal feast on 7th March.

BELCASTRO
Art City

Calabria region of Italy

 

City Guide
art profile

Travel in Belcastro
Belcastro hotels

 

Art Cities in Calabria
Catanzaro
Cosenza
Crotone
Reggio Calabria
Vibo Valentia
More Cities in Calabria
Acri
Aiello Calabro
Albi
Altomonte
Amantea
Amendolara
Andali
Arena
Badolato
Belcastro
Belmonte Calabro
Belvedere Marittimo
Bivongi
Bonifati
Bova
Caccuri
Castrovillari
Cetraro
Cerva
Corigliano
Cropani
Cutro
Falconara Albanese
Fiumefreddo Bruzio
Gerace
Gioiosa Jonica
Grotteria
Guardavalle
Lamezia Terme
Lappano
Locri
Luzzi
Maida
Mammola
Marina Gioiosa Ionica
Mesoraca
Monasterace
Morano Calabro
Motta San Giovanni
Nicotera
Nocera Terinese
Oriolo
Palizzi
Palmi
Pantanolungo
Paola
Pentedattilo
Petilia Policastro
Pizzo
Polistena
Rocca Imperiale
Roccella Ionica
Roghudi
Rosarno
Roseto Capo Spulico
Rossano
San Fili
San Demetrio Corone
San Giovanni in Fiore
San Marco Argentano
Santa Severina
Scalea
Scigliano
Scilla
Sellia Marina
Seminara
Serra San Bruno
Sersale
Sibari
Simeri Crichi
Soriano Calabro
Soverato
Spezzano della Sila
Squillace
Stignano
Stilo
Strongoli
Taverna
Tiriolo
Tropea
Zagarise
Archeological Sites
Kaulonia
Locri Epizephyrii
Scolacium

In Italy Today
Italy Guides:
> Art Cities
> Full List
> Italy Regions
Exhibitions Events
Hotels B&Bs

 


ART TRAVEL LINK - SELECTED WEB SITES

  • Your TravelSite - http://www.yoursite.com
    Description of the site.
  • ... ask to put your link here!

 


Vuoi inserire un LINK?
Hai un HOTEL o un'altra attività legata al TURISMO IN ITALIA?

Promuovilo nella pagina della tua città dentro IN ITALY TODAY!
OFFERTE PROMOZIONALI PER I PRIMI LINK

Art Travel directory

SUGGEST AN ART/TRAVEL-SITE

 

In Italy Today loves art

© IN ITALY HOTELS NETWORK