AMENDOLARA

Amendolara is a small town located on a series of flatlands descending to the sea, in an area enriched by original archaeological evidences, between the seaside of Roseto Capo Spulico and Trebisacce. Important evidences indicate that the zone was already inhabited in the Neolithic period (6000-4000 B.C.) and that human settlements became stable in the Protohistoric Age (3500-8000 B. C., when an Oenotrian community settled in the area of today’s “Rione vecchio”). The name of this very ancient center probably derives from the Greek word Amygdalaria, the town of almond trees due to its high production of almonds. According to other sources, its name originates from the Mendelèa family. Other researchers assume that Amendolara can be identified with the ancient city of Lagaria, founded by Epeius, the constructor of the mythological Trojan Horse, and destroyed with Sybaris in 510 B.C. In today’s area of the Masseria Lista, remains of a tank system for water supply were found. Evidences indicate that, in the Roman time, there was a post station alongshore in this location, probably called Statio ad Vicesimum (twenty miles away from the city of Thurii)




 


Address Piazza A. Sassone
  87071 Amendolara (CS)
Phone number 0981 911050
Fax 0981 1987139
Website http://www.comune.amendolara.cs.it/
 

 

Nearby the Amendolara seaside there is a shoal only 20 m deep under sea level. This remarkably wide area probably corresponds to the remains of an ancient island submerged by erosion. The proof comes from some old (17th-18th century) documents describing an islet called Monte Sardo. A legend and a number of recent studies sustain that Monte Sardo, that was sunken centuries ago, was the ancient island of Ogygia where the Nymph Calypso detained Odysseus, as related by Homer in the Odyssey.

Among ancient historical buildings, some stately mansions are artistically valuable. Palazzo Andreassi, once a noble dwelling, underwent several changes and for a period hosted local municipal offices. Palazzo Melazzi, in baroque style was subjected to many modifications; rooms such as an olive oil mill and a tank occupy the ground floor. The Palazziata is a baroque-style building owned by the Gallerano family, and it was used for a period as the Carabinieri station and the elementary school. Palazzo Grisolia was built on the site where the 1521 Dominican monastery stood, whose cloister was conserved together with the church of San Domenico, a single nave building restored in 1660.

Among cultural and artistic beauties, the following deserve mention: the Main Church of Santa Margherita Vergine e Martire, remodeled in Romanesque style in the 18th century, has the main gate of the early 14th century; the Church of Santa Maria, probably erected on an ancient temple, has Byzantine-type apse and dome that were subject to Renaissance and Baroque transformations.

The Castle, of older origins, restored by Frederick II in 1239 and remodeled later, preserves a fresco depicting the Crucifixion of the end of the Thirteenth century.

The Public Archaeological Museum Vincenzo Laviola was opened in 1996 and displays remains of the archaeological digs in Rione Vecchio (settlements of the bronze and iron ages), San Nicola plain (the archaeological area of the Greek-archaic city of Lagaria) and the necropolis. There are many Byzantine Churches in the surroundings, built outside the inhabited town between the 9th and 10th century in an area with many caves supposed to be the place where hermits encountered.



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