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Sicilia - Places to Visit - Enna

Enna in Sicilia

Enna lies in the heart of Sicily, in a panoramic setting on a stretch of high ground in the region of the Erei hills, and, at 931 m. above sea level, is the highest provincial chief town in Italy. Once a Siculi settlement, in pre-Roman times it was held by the Greeks, Syracusans and Carthaginians.

Though a municipium at the time of the Roman Empire, it was of no great importance, and its history was that of the region: Greek domination then Byzantine, followed by that of the Arabs and Normans (11th century), as part of the Kingdom of Sicily.

Its monuments include: Castello di Lombardia, built by Frederick II of Swabia over previous constructions: 6 of its 22 towers are still standing (interesting interiors); the Duomo, of 13th century origins, rebuilt in the 16th century, richly frescoed; the church of S. Francesco d'Assisi (14th century).

The principal town in one of the most impoverished provinces of Italy, Enna has an economy based principally on the service industries, employment in the public sector being of particular importance; the industrial sector is underdeveloped, apart from traditional mining activities (sulphur, potash) and now in difficulty.

Events: Festa di Maria Santissima della Visitazione (2nd July), summer events at the Castello di Lombardia.

Famous People: Giuseppe Alessi (man of letters, 1774-1837), Napoleone Colajanni (politician, 1847-1921).

Enna in Sicilia

Cultural Institutions: State Archives, Library, Museo Alessi (numismatics section, archaeological exhibits, ceramics, paintings).

In the Province: Calascibetta (of urban and environmental interest), Nicosia (cathedral, agricultural centre), Barrafranca (sulphur extraction), Piazza Armerina (Roman villa Casale, agricultural centre), Lake Pergusa (car racing).

Morgantina: Located off Route 288 near Aidone, in the province of Enna, Morgantina may have been settled by a certain King Morges who arrived with colonists from central Italy around 1300 BC. The early Morgetian culture was therefore somewhat distinct from the native Siculian civilisation. The Greeks absorbed the city some six centuries later. It was destroyed by the Romans during the Punic Wars in 211 BC, but eventually rebuilt as a Roman city. Eunus "liberated" Morgantina in 139 BC during the slave revolt, and died a prisoner in this city. Morgantina was abandoned around 30 BC (like Solunto) for unknown reasons. It had been a wealthy and prosperous city.

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