POZZUOLI

Puteoli was founded earlier than Naples by some greek refugees (coming from Samo's island) escaping a dictatorship and that's why they called the new city Dicearchia (the city of justice).

Dicerachia became later on Puteoli (194 b.C.) which was fully integrated in the Roman Empire system as the most important see port for connecting Rome with all mediterranean. The name Puteoli means "little wells" for the fact that the city was located inside an area strongly characterized by the presence of several craters.
In 37 a.D. the city was the set of an unique show organized by Caligula, who on becoming emperor wanted to be built a temporary bridge of ships connecting Puteoli to Baia, along which he went riding his horse. This only to contradict a an astrologer's prediction that he had "no more chance of becoming Emperor than of riding a horse across the Gulf of Baiae."
One more curiosity: here landed apostle Paul on his way to Rome in 61 a.D.


It still keeps impressive monuments of those days and not only. The visit highlights are the wonderful and well preserved Flavium Amphitheatre, the Macellum but also the Rione Terra, a small borgo built on steep rock on the sea, where the greek and roman city and the Middle age settlement mix. Pozzuoli's life during the centuries cannot be understood without knowing the peculiar volcanic activity of Bradisism that has lifted up and down the soil and that has contributed to save the old roman port, a wide area with warehouses and roads, situated today integrally 4 mtrs under the sea level.

A visit to the Solfatara, the active crater of the Campi Flegrei, is also reccomended.

POZZUOLI
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Campania region of Italy

 

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