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Castle of Palma di Montechiaro

The Castle of Palma Montechiaro stands atop a rocky ridge near the sea, right above the famous "Mermaid Bay". The landscape and environment that surrounds the castle of Lichtenberg, makes a visit to the fourteenth century manor an exciting and evocative. The castle, built by Frederick III Chiaramonte, has also been part of the heritage of Prince Tomasi di Lampedusa, made famous by the Leopard.

Since the first visit that we made (October 2006), the castle has enchanted us for his majesty, a fortress that dominates the surrounding environment with harmony typical of the medieval buildings, far from our amazing modern architecture, which hardly fit into the natural environment.

The stones of the castle blend with the rock of the promontory, and the tower stands on the plant coaming castle to remember the importance of the fortress. In fact the castle was built to defend the activities of a magazine granary. But pity that we could not visit the castle before the restoration of 2002-2003. There were in fact heavy polemics of the restoration, and in fact, simply look at the castle and noted that the presence of plaster, clay bricks and changes to the geometries typically Chiaramontane and medieval (or windowless pointed arches that become amazingly square / s or blackbirds are filled), has led to the disruption and loss of identity of this wonderful building of architectural and monumental.

The restoration of a monument must ensure the integrity of the material it is made, and must be performed following the basic principles and criteria established by the institutions in the conservation of cultural heritage, as the 'Venice Charter' and the 'Charter Krakow 2000 '.

Therefore difficult to understand why an action, the outrageous and violent. It seems that where there really come the hand of weather or natural disasters, just the hand of man. The castle of Lichtenberg is considered one of the most typical examples of fourteenth-century castles of Sicily and, despite the absence of features to use, it has been preserved in its original entirety until 2000.

The fortified complex has a floor plan divided, with short and main tower. It is accessed from the south side, through a small street, cobbled uphill from where you came, past the front door, in the courtyard. The tower coaming is a rhomboidal plan and has two levels, the terrace still shows type Guelph battlements. The main body of rectangular shape on the north-east consists of a ground floor used as a chapel and a floor below.

Considerable interest is the chapel that houses the charming Lady of Lichtenberg, carved marble statue by Antonello Gagini (1478-1536), artist Palermo.

Very interesting is the legend which tells that the statue, stolen from nearby residents of Agrigento, was first reported by Palmesi in the castle after a long and furious battle. To corroborate this fact is the name given to a stream that was thereafter referred to as the "valley of the battle."

Ladder of the Turkish - Realmonte

 scala-dei-turchi-realmonte-patrimonio-unesco

 

Tip White - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

punta-bianca-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

punta-bianca-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Sirens Cove - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

caletta-delle-sirene-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

caletta-delle-sirene-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Marine of Palma - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 marina-di-palma-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

marina-di-palma-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Roccatenna - Malerba - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 roccatenna--malerba---palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

roccatenna--malerba---palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Cove Malerba - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 malerba-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

malerba-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

 

Ciotta - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 ciotta-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

ciotta-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

Castle of Naro

 The Castle of Naro, built in the fourteenth century by Chiaramonte and therefore also known as the "Castle Chiaramontano", stands atop a hill called anciently "Mount Agragante".
 The complex includes the walls with battlements, the square tower built by Frederick II of Aragon and the imposing mass of the male.
 On the west side of the tower was a walled shield aragonese while on the east side you can see two typical Gothic mullioned windows that illuminate the great "Prince Hall", located on the first floor of the tower.
 The entrance portal of the pointed arch is flanked by two rectangular bastions.
 The massive exterior walls are punctuated by two cylindrical towers and two towers.
 Inside the walls there is a large courtyard with a well in the center, beneath which is carved a large cistern that was sometimes used as a prison. The courtyard housed the accommodation of the garrison, the chapel and the stables, and also in case of Stem, offered refuge to local farmers.
 Among the interior, covered with barrel vaults, the show is remarkable, which is accessed from a fourteenth-century port, connected to the terrace embattled by a scale inserted in the wall thickness.
 The castle, declared a national monument in 1912, has been the subject of restoration with the dual purpose of preserving the building and place it in the local community.
 To this end, two levels of the south-east and the Aragonese Tower were used as a museum and the area south-west has been designed to accommodate a restoration workshop.

Castle Favara

 Built in the thirteenth century by Chiaramonte, testifies to the passage from the castle to the type of building. The Palace, as it is commonly called, evokes the type of the Swabians built castles in eastern Sicily, and you can even pull over to "Palacia" or "solacia" built by King Frederick II in Sicily and Puglia in the first half century.
 Its use is not strictly military but primarily residential is also due to the position of lower levels of the manor, which shows a first order and a second compact facade pierced by mullioned windows, some replaced, during the Renaissance by windows with architraves.
 

Tour of Castle Favara

 The ground floor rooms that housed warehouses, stables and the servants' quarters, are covered with barrel vaults and all overlook the courtyard through ogival doors while the outside walls are pierced by narrow slits. A plaque in the entrance hall entrance still bears a mysterious recording that the popular belief refers to a hidden treasure.

 Worthy of note are the chapel and the portal, flanked on each side by two columns and a polished marble frieze in low relief with winged cupids. The grounds of the Norman decorations echo clearly: in particular shafts and capitals evoke those of the cloister of the Duomo of Monreale.

 A curious legend that tells of a passage that connected the castle to the mountain Caltafaraci within which lived the goose that lays golden eggs. In fact, under the court of the Castle is a mysterious tunnel.

 

Castle Racalmuto

Racalmuto Castle was built during the Norman period and exactly in the barony of Malcovenant Robert, a Frenchman in the wake of King Roger of Altavilla. Then Frederick of Aragon transferred ownership of the castle and surrounding estate to Frederick II Chiaramonte. Just the Chiaramonte family was responsible for the initial expansion of the fortress became a majestic appearance.
The ancient village of Racalmuto of Saracen origin, was abandoned in 1300 following a plague and the current Racalmuto developed around the castle.

The castle is a clear example of military architecture of the Swabian period, with its trapezoidal towers with a circular base, the layout of the portal and secondary entrances, windows arranged without symmetry and imposing façade walls two meters thick . The left tower has retained its original appearance while the right has been restored and a lookout. At the beginning of the twentieth century the castle was declared a national monument.

 

 

The construction of the St. Charles Tower, just beyond the mouth of the river Palma, dating to 1639 by Carlo Tomasi, first Duke of Palma, who obtained permission from Philip IV of Spain and had defensive purposes because of the continuous pirate raids Palmese on the coast.

 The fort was equipped with weapons, war gear, and a sufficient number of soldiers.

 It stands on a square body with a base shaped like a truncated pyramid. There are signs that indicate the presence of a drawbridge and shelves on which they were to rest the machicolations.
 
 Next to the tower was built a small church, which no longer exists, with the title of Most Holy Rosary, led by a chaplain, for the commissioning of soldiers. The defense features were maintained until 1820.

The manor of Lichtenberg, together with the Castle built by Chiaramonte, belonged to the family De Caro, whose coat of arms taken from the name of Palma, in the fifteenth century later passed by marriage to Tomasi in the mid of the next century. The town was founded in 1637 by Carlo Tomasi and De Caro, and until 1812 it remained in Tomasi di Lampedusa. In 1863 the name was added to Montechiaro Palma, near the castle Chiaramonte. The foundation of the city is part of that vast plan of reorganization and urban development and social context, better known as Licentia polpulandi, promoted by the Spanish Viceroy in support of the expansion and increased dell'inurbanizzazione campaigns and exploitation of large estates; work that is part of what was the long feudal Sicily, after the sad period of land abandonment because of the frequent incursions of Barbary and the consequent state of insecurity. History of Palma de Lichtenberg stands inside the other foundations of the feudal 600per the mystical story of the founders.
 
Palma was founded in 1637 by the family of my dear native Licata and precisely from the twins and Giulio Carlo Tomasi and Caro who took the title of dukes in the same year. Were present at the foundation of many noble and architect Antonio De Marco, chronicler of the memory of the time was Giovan Battista Hodierna priest, scientist, astronomer and mathematician. The family originated from Mario Tomasi, Captain Knight came to Sicily after the viceroy Marcantonio Colonna, who had managed to marry a noble heiress in 1583la Dear Francesca, Baroness de Lichtenberg and lady of the island of Lampedusa. His two nephews twin founders of Palma influenced and they became the protagonists of the most glorious phase of the family saga. Charles, renouncing their rights took monastic vows in the order of the fathers Theatines and tied her life to good works and to the rigorous practice of penance and spiritual body. Julius, after he succeeded his brother in the securities and the administration of goods and having also married Rosalie Traina, Baroness of Falconeri, had served as commissioner of the Inquisition in Licata, a city which, thanks to the legacies of sadly hexose Monsignor Traina, bishop of the diocese and uncle of the bride, he collected almost all the census. Established after the final residence in the land of Palma was dedicated to the administration of goods with the holiness of work earning the nickname "Duke saint."
 
The structural and ideological roots of the ancient city with cyclical repetition of geometric shapes and symbolic, as well as the shape of the Roman fort is found in the ancient Mesopotamian mazes or even in Indian mandala or breakdowns in the city of the dead in Egyptian times, but it is right in the first Renaissance and the Baroque, which then reproduces the rules for the shape of the city where religious mysticism and mathematical studies find their common denominator in the form of the cross. All new cities follow the rigid schedule of the order chessboard references Cartesian mathematics, but loading of highly symbolic that the geometric pattern of the thistle and the revival of Roman decumanus, find the shape of the cross, symbolically oriented from sunrise to sunset. Metaphor for the path of salvation, and the ephemeral earthly existence. Giulio Tomasi, Duke St., takes the title of the second Duke of Palma, after the surrender of his brother Charles.
 
He conceived the founding of the country in the entire structure as a new Jerusalem, where you can revive yourself and do the residents enjoy the new center highlights the life of Christ and served the humanist and the first dean of the city Giovan Battista Hodierna to delineate an ideal track and penitential time. The Duke did make a hill of the Church of Our Lady of Light, now a ruin. The course was divided into 18 stations, each one was a painting on each mystery. It was the Hodierna to describe the location where the application of Julius obtained a plenary indulgence to all of those who could get the pilgrims to the Holy Land, so difficult to visit. Palma is therefore presented as the Holy Land and the way to Calvary was a figurative paraphrase most important spiritual journey. What workers have assembled for the construction of the city is not known. The only known name is that of the architect Antonio Ragusa Di Marco, mentioned in the act of foundation of the Benedictine monastery (1637).
 
To this end, east and west, built the Church of the Nativity, the Church of the Holy House of Loreto and the Church of Our Lady of Light. The latter on Mount Calvary, of which today we can admire the imposing ruins. At Calvary ended the Via Crucis which, starting from the square in front of the Monastery wound for a long journey marked by 18 stations, decorated with scenes from the Stations of the Cross is Christ painted on slabs of plaster. The Calvary was such an integral part of a journey symbolic fruit of religion by Giovan Battista Hodierna, Ragusa, the first dean of the new foundation. The Duke Julius obtained by the Apostolic See the application of the same plenary indulgence which he earned in the Holy Land for those who had the ascetic path offered by the city of Palma. To assist pilgrims unsure Friday of Lent reached the figure of 5000, the Duke founded the Congregation of Clerks Minimum of Sacramento. The whole family was involved in the aura of mysticism, from which emerged the figures of Joseph's sons, Cardinal sanctified by a few years, and the Blessed Sister Maria Crocefissa. In Piazza Santa Rosalia facing the two most important buildings: the Cathedral Church and the Palazzo Ducale. The current piazza Matteotti until 1922 was the vast garden of the monastery.

The building now houses the municipal offices, is certainly one of the most beautiful late-Baroque heritage. Built in 1698 by Julius II, Duke of Palma and Prince of Lampedusa, was completed on December 8, 1712, feast of the Immaculate Mary and Cardinal Giuseppe Tomasi turned him over to the Fathers of St. Joseph Calasanz Piarists who settled the Institute of Pie in 800 schools that became a real University attended by several scions of the aristocracy island. Leaning against the palace is the Church of the Holy Family with it, constitutes a unique architectural complex.

Castle of Palma di Montechiaro

The Castle of Palma Montechiaro stands atop a rocky ridge near the sea, right above the famous "Mermaid Bay". The landscape and environment that surrounds the castle of Lichtenberg, makes a visit to the fourteenth century manor an exciting and evocative. The castle, built by Frederick III Chiaramonte, has also been part of the heritage of Prince Tomasi di Lampedusa, made famous by the Leopard.

Since the first visit that we made (October 2006), the castle has enchanted us for his majesty, a fortress that dominates the surrounding environment with harmony typical of the medieval buildings, far from our amazing modern architecture, which hardly fit into the natural environment.

The stones of the castle blend with the rock of the promontory, and the tower stands on the plant coaming castle to remember the importance of the fortress. In fact the castle was built to defend the activities of a magazine granary. But pity that we could not visit the castle before the restoration of 2002-2003. There were in fact heavy polemics of the restoration, and in fact, simply look at the castle and noted that the presence of plaster, clay bricks and changes to the geometries typically Chiaramontane and medieval (or windowless pointed arches that become amazingly square / s or blackbirds are filled), has led to the disruption and loss of identity of this wonderful building of architectural and monumental.

The restoration of a monument must ensure the integrity of the material it is made, and must be performed following the basic principles and criteria established by the institutions in the conservation of cultural heritage, as the 'Venice Charter' and the 'Charter Krakow 2000 '.

Therefore difficult to understand why an action, the outrageous and violent. It seems that where there really come the hand of weather or natural disasters, just the hand of man. The castle of Lichtenberg is considered one of the most typical examples of fourteenth-century castles of Sicily and, despite the absence of features to use, it has been preserved in its original entirety until 2000.

The fortified complex has a floor plan divided, with short and main tower. It is accessed from the south side, through a small street, cobbled uphill from where you came, past the front door, in the courtyard. The tower coaming is a rhomboidal plan and has two levels, the terrace still shows type Guelph battlements. The main body of rectangular shape on the north-east consists of a ground floor used as a chapel and a floor below.

Considerable interest is the chapel that houses the charming Lady of Lichtenberg, carved marble statue by Antonello Gagini (1478-1536), artist Palermo.

Very interesting is the legend which tells that the statue, stolen from nearby residents of Agrigento, was first reported by Palmesi in the castle after a long and furious battle. To corroborate this fact is the name given to a stream that was thereafter referred to as the "valley of the battle."

Ladder of the Turkish - Realmonte

 scala-dei-turchi-realmonte-patrimonio-unesco

 

Tip White - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

punta-bianca-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

punta-bianca-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Sirens Cove - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

caletta-delle-sirene-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

caletta-delle-sirene-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Marine of Palma - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 marina-di-palma-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

marina-di-palma-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Roccatenna - Malerba - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 roccatenna--malerba---palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

roccatenna--malerba---palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Cove Malerba - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 malerba-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

malerba-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

 

Ciotta - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 ciotta-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

ciotta-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

Castle of Naro

 The Castle of Naro, built in the fourteenth century by Chiaramonte and therefore also known as the "Castle Chiaramontano", stands atop a hill called anciently "Mount Agragante".
 The complex includes the walls with battlements, the square tower built by Frederick II of Aragon and the imposing mass of the male.
 On the west side of the tower was a walled shield aragonese while on the east side you can see two typical Gothic mullioned windows that illuminate the great "Prince Hall", located on the first floor of the tower.
 The entrance portal of the pointed arch is flanked by two rectangular bastions.
 The massive exterior walls are punctuated by two cylindrical towers and two towers.
 Inside the walls there is a large courtyard with a well in the center, beneath which is carved a large cistern that was sometimes used as a prison. The courtyard housed the accommodation of the garrison, the chapel and the stables, and also in case of Stem, offered refuge to local farmers.
 Among the interior, covered with barrel vaults, the show is remarkable, which is accessed from a fourteenth-century port, connected to the terrace embattled by a scale inserted in the wall thickness.
 The castle, declared a national monument in 1912, has been the subject of restoration with the dual purpose of preserving the building and place it in the local community.
 To this end, two levels of the south-east and the Aragonese Tower were used as a museum and the area south-west has been designed to accommodate a restoration workshop.

Castle Favara

 Built in the thirteenth century by Chiaramonte, testifies to the passage from the castle to the type of building. The Palace, as it is commonly called, evokes the type of the Swabians built castles in eastern Sicily, and you can even pull over to "Palacia" or "solacia" built by King Frederick II in Sicily and Puglia in the first half century.
 Its use is not strictly military but primarily residential is also due to the position of lower levels of the manor, which shows a first order and a second compact facade pierced by mullioned windows, some replaced, during the Renaissance by windows with architraves.
 

Tour of Castle Favara

 The ground floor rooms that housed warehouses, stables and the servants' quarters, are covered with barrel vaults and all overlook the courtyard through ogival doors while the outside walls are pierced by narrow slits. A plaque in the entrance hall entrance still bears a mysterious recording that the popular belief refers to a hidden treasure.

 Worthy of note are the chapel and the portal, flanked on each side by two columns and a polished marble frieze in low relief with winged cupids. The grounds of the Norman decorations echo clearly: in particular shafts and capitals evoke those of the cloister of the Duomo of Monreale.

 A curious legend that tells of a passage that connected the castle to the mountain Caltafaraci within which lived the goose that lays golden eggs. In fact, under the court of the Castle is a mysterious tunnel.

 

Castle Racalmuto

Racalmuto Castle was built during the Norman period and exactly in the barony of Malcovenant Robert, a Frenchman in the wake of King Roger of Altavilla. Then Frederick of Aragon transferred ownership of the castle and surrounding estate to Frederick II Chiaramonte. Just the Chiaramonte family was responsible for the initial expansion of the fortress became a majestic appearance.
The ancient village of Racalmuto of Saracen origin, was abandoned in 1300 following a plague and the current Racalmuto developed around the castle.

The castle is a clear example of military architecture of the Swabian period, with its trapezoidal towers with a circular base, the layout of the portal and secondary entrances, windows arranged without symmetry and imposing façade walls two meters thick . The left tower has retained its original appearance while the right has been restored and a lookout. At the beginning of the twentieth century the castle was declared a national monument.

 

 

The construction of the St. Charles Tower, just beyond the mouth of the river Palma, dating to 1639 by Carlo Tomasi, first Duke of Palma, who obtained permission from Philip IV of Spain and had defensive purposes because of the continuous pirate raids Palmese on the coast.

 The fort was equipped with weapons, war gear, and a sufficient number of soldiers.

 It stands on a square body with a base shaped like a truncated pyramid. There are signs that indicate the presence of a drawbridge and shelves on which they were to rest the machicolations.
 
 Next to the tower was built a small church, which no longer exists, with the title of Most Holy Rosary, led by a chaplain, for the commissioning of soldiers. The defense features were maintained until 1820.

The manor of Lichtenberg, together with the Castle built by Chiaramonte, belonged to the family De Caro, whose coat of arms taken from the name of Palma, in the fifteenth century later passed by marriage to Tomasi in the mid of the next century. The town was founded in 1637 by Carlo Tomasi and De Caro, and until 1812 it remained in Tomasi di Lampedusa. In 1863 the name was added to Montechiaro Palma, near the castle Chiaramonte. The foundation of the city is part of that vast plan of reorganization and urban development and social context, better known as Licentia polpulandi, promoted by the Spanish Viceroy in support of the expansion and increased dell'inurbanizzazione campaigns and exploitation of large estates; work that is part of what was the long feudal Sicily, after the sad period of land abandonment because of the frequent incursions of Barbary and the consequent state of insecurity. History of Palma de Lichtenberg stands inside the other foundations of the feudal 600per the mystical story of the founders.
 
Palma was founded in 1637 by the family of my dear native Licata and precisely from the twins and Giulio Carlo Tomasi and Caro who took the title of dukes in the same year. Were present at the foundation of many noble and architect Antonio De Marco, chronicler of the memory of the time was Giovan Battista Hodierna priest, scientist, astronomer and mathematician. The family originated from Mario Tomasi, Captain Knight came to Sicily after the viceroy Marcantonio Colonna, who had managed to marry a noble heiress in 1583la Dear Francesca, Baroness de Lichtenberg and lady of the island of Lampedusa. His two nephews twin founders of Palma influenced and they became the protagonists of the most glorious phase of the family saga. Charles, renouncing their rights took monastic vows in the order of the fathers Theatines and tied her life to good works and to the rigorous practice of penance and spiritual body. Julius, after he succeeded his brother in the securities and the administration of goods and having also married Rosalie Traina, Baroness of Falconeri, had served as commissioner of the Inquisition in Licata, a city which, thanks to the legacies of sadly hexose Monsignor Traina, bishop of the diocese and uncle of the bride, he collected almost all the census. Established after the final residence in the land of Palma was dedicated to the administration of goods with the holiness of work earning the nickname "Duke saint."
 
The structural and ideological roots of the ancient city with cyclical repetition of geometric shapes and symbolic, as well as the shape of the Roman fort is found in the ancient Mesopotamian mazes or even in Indian mandala or breakdowns in the city of the dead in Egyptian times, but it is right in the first Renaissance and the Baroque, which then reproduces the rules for the shape of the city where religious mysticism and mathematical studies find their common denominator in the form of the cross. All new cities follow the rigid schedule of the order chessboard references Cartesian mathematics, but loading of highly symbolic that the geometric pattern of the thistle and the revival of Roman decumanus, find the shape of the cross, symbolically oriented from sunrise to sunset. Metaphor for the path of salvation, and the ephemeral earthly existence. Giulio Tomasi, Duke St., takes the title of the second Duke of Palma, after the surrender of his brother Charles.
 
He conceived the founding of the country in the entire structure as a new Jerusalem, where you can revive yourself and do the residents enjoy the new center highlights the life of Christ and served the humanist and the first dean of the city Giovan Battista Hodierna to delineate an ideal track and penitential time. The Duke did make a hill of the Church of Our Lady of Light, now a ruin. The course was divided into 18 stations, each one was a painting on each mystery. It was the Hodierna to describe the location where the application of Julius obtained a plenary indulgence to all of those who could get the pilgrims to the Holy Land, so difficult to visit. Palma is therefore presented as the Holy Land and the way to Calvary was a figurative paraphrase most important spiritual journey. What workers have assembled for the construction of the city is not known. The only known name is that of the architect Antonio Ragusa Di Marco, mentioned in the act of foundation of the Benedictine monastery (1637).
 
To this end, east and west, built the Church of the Nativity, the Church of the Holy House of Loreto and the Church of Our Lady of Light. The latter on Mount Calvary, of which today we can admire the imposing ruins. At Calvary ended the Via Crucis which, starting from the square in front of the Monastery wound for a long journey marked by 18 stations, decorated with scenes from the Stations of the Cross is Christ painted on slabs of plaster. The Calvary was such an integral part of a journey symbolic fruit of religion by Giovan Battista Hodierna, Ragusa, the first dean of the new foundation. The Duke Julius obtained by the Apostolic See the application of the same plenary indulgence which he earned in the Holy Land for those who had the ascetic path offered by the city of Palma. To assist pilgrims unsure Friday of Lent reached the figure of 5000, the Duke founded the Congregation of Clerks Minimum of Sacramento. The whole family was involved in the aura of mysticism, from which emerged the figures of Joseph's sons, Cardinal sanctified by a few years, and the Blessed Sister Maria Crocefissa. In Piazza Santa Rosalia facing the two most important buildings: the Cathedral Church and the Palazzo Ducale. The current piazza Matteotti until 1922 was the vast garden of the monastery.

The building now houses the municipal offices, is certainly one of the most beautiful late-Baroque heritage. Built in 1698 by Julius II, Duke of Palma and Prince of Lampedusa, was completed on December 8, 1712, feast of the Immaculate Mary and Cardinal Giuseppe Tomasi turned him over to the Fathers of St. Joseph Calasanz Piarists who settled the Institute of Pie in 800 schools that became a real University attended by several scions of the aristocracy island. Leaning against the palace is the Church of the Holy Family with it, constitutes a unique architectural complex.

Castle of Palma di Montechiaro

The Castle of Palma Montechiaro stands atop a rocky ridge near the sea, right above the famous "Mermaid Bay". The landscape and environment that surrounds the castle of Lichtenberg, makes a visit to the fourteenth century manor an exciting and evocative. The castle, built by Frederick III Chiaramonte, has also been part of the heritage of Prince Tomasi di Lampedusa, made famous by the Leopard.

Since the first visit that we made (October 2006), the castle has enchanted us for his majesty, a fortress that dominates the surrounding environment with harmony typical of the medieval buildings, far from our amazing modern architecture, which hardly fit into the natural environment.

The stones of the castle blend with the rock of the promontory, and the tower stands on the plant coaming castle to remember the importance of the fortress. In fact the castle was built to defend the activities of a magazine granary. But pity that we could not visit the castle before the restoration of 2002-2003. There were in fact heavy polemics of the restoration, and in fact, simply look at the castle and noted that the presence of plaster, clay bricks and changes to the geometries typically Chiaramontane and medieval (or windowless pointed arches that become amazingly square / s or blackbirds are filled), has led to the disruption and loss of identity of this wonderful building of architectural and monumental.

The restoration of a monument must ensure the integrity of the material it is made, and must be performed following the basic principles and criteria established by the institutions in the conservation of cultural heritage, as the 'Venice Charter' and the 'Charter Krakow 2000 '.

Therefore difficult to understand why an action, the outrageous and violent. It seems that where there really come the hand of weather or natural disasters, just the hand of man. The castle of Lichtenberg is considered one of the most typical examples of fourteenth-century castles of Sicily and, despite the absence of features to use, it has been preserved in its original entirety until 2000.

The fortified complex has a floor plan divided, with short and main tower. It is accessed from the south side, through a small street, cobbled uphill from where you came, past the front door, in the courtyard. The tower coaming is a rhomboidal plan and has two levels, the terrace still shows type Guelph battlements. The main body of rectangular shape on the north-east consists of a ground floor used as a chapel and a floor below.

Considerable interest is the chapel that houses the charming Lady of Lichtenberg, carved marble statue by Antonello Gagini (1478-1536), artist Palermo.

Very interesting is the legend which tells that the statue, stolen from nearby residents of Agrigento, was first reported by Palmesi in the castle after a long and furious battle. To corroborate this fact is the name given to a stream that was thereafter referred to as the "valley of the battle."

Ladder of the Turkish - Realmonte

 scala-dei-turchi-realmonte-patrimonio-unesco

 

Tip White - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

punta-bianca-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

punta-bianca-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Sirens Cove - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

caletta-delle-sirene-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

caletta-delle-sirene-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Marine of Palma - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 marina-di-palma-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

marina-di-palma-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Roccatenna - Malerba - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 roccatenna--malerba---palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

roccatenna--malerba---palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

 

Cove Malerba - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 malerba-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily-2

malerba-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

 

Ciotta - Palma di Montechiaro - Sicily

 ciotta-palma-di-montechiaro-sicily

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Castle of Naro

 The Castle of Naro, built in the fourteenth century by Chiaramonte and therefore also known as the "Castle Chiaramontano", stands atop a hill called anciently "Mount Agragante".
 The complex includes the walls with battlements, the square tower built by Frederick II of Aragon and the imposing mass of the male.
 On the west side of the tower was a walled shield aragonese while on the east side you can see two typical Gothic mullioned windows that illuminate the great "Prince Hall", located on the first floor of the tower.
 The entrance portal of the pointed arch is flanked by two rectangular bastions.
 The massive exterior walls are punctuated by two cylindrical towers and two towers.
 Inside the walls there is a large courtyard with a well in the center, beneath which is carved a large cistern that was sometimes used as a prison. The courtyard housed the accommodation of the garrison, the chapel and the stables, and also in case of Stem, offered refuge to local farmers.
 Among the interior, covered with barrel vaults, the show is remarkable, which is accessed from a fourteenth-century port, connected to the terrace embattled by a scale inserted in the wall thickness.
 The castle, declared a national monument in 1912, has been the subject of restoration with the dual purpose of preserving the building and place it in the local community.
 To this end, two levels of the south-east and the Aragonese Tower were used as a museum and the area south-west has been designed to accommodate a restoration workshop.

Castle Favara

 Built in the thirteenth century by Chiaramonte, testifies to the passage from the castle to the type of building. The Palace, as it is commonly called, evokes the type of the Swabians built castles in eastern Sicily, and you can even pull over to "Palacia" or "solacia" built by King Frederick II in Sicily and Puglia in the first half century.
 Its use is not strictly military but primarily residential is also due to the position of lower levels of the manor, which shows a first order and a second compact facade pierced by mullioned windows, some replaced, during the Renaissance by windows with architraves.
 

Tour of Castle Favara

 The ground floor rooms that housed warehouses, stables and the servants' quarters, are covered with barrel vaults and all overlook the courtyard through ogival doors while the outside walls are pierced by narrow slits. A plaque in the entrance hall entrance still bears a mysterious recording that the popular belief refers to a hidden treasure.

 Worthy of note are the chapel and the portal, flanked on each side by two columns and a polished marble frieze in low relief with winged cupids. The grounds of the Norman decorations echo clearly: in particular shafts and capitals evoke those of the cloister of the Duomo of Monreale.

 A curious legend that tells of a passage that connected the castle to the mountain Caltafaraci within which lived the goose that lays golden eggs. In fact, under the court of the Castle is a mysterious tunnel.

 

Castle Racalmuto

Racalmuto Castle was built during the Norman period and exactly in the barony of Malcovenant Robert, a Frenchman in the wake of King Roger of Altavilla. Then Frederick of Aragon transferred ownership of the castle and surrounding estate to Frederick II Chiaramonte. Just the Chiaramonte family was responsible for the initial expansion of the fortress became a majestic appearance.
The ancient village of Racalmuto of Saracen origin, was abandoned in 1300 following a plague and the current Racalmuto developed around the castle.

The castle is a clear example of military architecture of the Swabian period, with its trapezoidal towers with a circular base, the layout of the portal and secondary entrances, windows arranged without symmetry and imposing façade walls two meters thick . The left tower has retained its original appearance while the right has been restored and a lookout. At the beginning of the twentieth century the castle was declared a national monument.

 

 

The construction of the St. Charles Tower, just beyond the mouth of the river Palma, dating to 1639 by Carlo Tomasi, first Duke of Palma, who obtained permission from Philip IV of Spain and had defensive purposes because of the continuous pirate raids Palmese on the coast.

 The fort was equipped with weapons, war gear, and a sufficient number of soldiers.

 It stands on a square body with a base shaped like a truncated pyramid. There are signs that indicate the presence of a drawbridge and shelves on which they were to rest the machicolations.
 
 Next to the tower was built a small church, which no longer exists, with the title of Most Holy Rosary, led by a chaplain, for the commissioning of soldiers. The defense features were maintained until 1820.

The manor of Lichtenberg, together with the Castle built by Chiaramonte, belonged to the family De Caro, whose coat of arms taken from the name of Palma, in the fifteenth century later passed by marriage to Tomasi in the mid of the next century. The town was founded in 1637 by Carlo Tomasi and De Caro, and until 1812 it remained in Tomasi di Lampedusa. In 1863 the name was added to Montechiaro Palma, near the castle Chiaramonte. The foundation of the city is part of that vast plan of reorganization and urban development and social context, better known as Licentia polpulandi, promoted by the Spanish Viceroy in support of the expansion and increased dell'inurbanizzazione campaigns and exploitation of large estates; work that is part of what was the long feudal Sicily, after the sad period of land abandonment because of the frequent incursions of Barbary and the consequent state of insecurity. History of Palma de Lichtenberg stands inside the other foundations of the feudal 600per the mystical story of the founders.
 
Palma was founded in 1637 by the family of my dear native Licata and precisely from the twins and Giulio Carlo Tomasi and Caro who took the title of dukes in the same year. Were present at the foundation of many noble and architect Antonio De Marco, chronicler of the memory of the time was Giovan Battista Hodierna priest, scientist, astronomer and mathematician. The family originated from Mario Tomasi, Captain Knight came to Sicily after the viceroy Marcantonio Colonna, who had managed to marry a noble heiress in 1583la Dear Francesca, Baroness de Lichtenberg and lady of the island of Lampedusa. His two nephews twin founders of Palma influenced and they became the protagonists of the most glorious phase of the family saga. Charles, renouncing their rights took monastic vows in the order of the fathers Theatines and tied her life to good works and to the rigorous practice of penance and spiritual body. Julius, after he succeeded his brother in the securities and the administration of goods and having also married Rosalie Traina, Baroness of Falconeri, had served as commissioner of the Inquisition in Licata, a city which, thanks to the legacies of sadly hexose Monsignor Traina, bishop of the diocese and uncle of the bride, he collected almost all the census. Established after the final residence in the land of Palma was dedicated to the administration of goods with the holiness of work earning the nickname "Duke saint."
 
The structural and ideological roots of the ancient city with cyclical repetition of geometric shapes and symbolic, as well as the shape of the Roman fort is found in the ancient Mesopotamian mazes or even in Indian mandala or breakdowns in the city of the dead in Egyptian times, but it is right in the first Renaissance and the Baroque, which then reproduces the rules for the shape of the city where religious mysticism and mathematical studies find their common denominator in the form of the cross. All new cities follow the rigid schedule of the order chessboard references Cartesian mathematics, but loading of highly symbolic that the geometric pattern of the thistle and the revival of Roman decumanus, find the shape of the cross, symbolically oriented from sunrise to sunset. Metaphor for the path of salvation, and the ephemeral earthly existence. Giulio Tomasi, Duke St., takes the title of the second Duke of Palma, after the surrender of his brother Charles.
 
He conceived the founding of the country in the entire structure as a new Jerusalem, where you can revive yourself and do the residents enjoy the new center highlights the life of Christ and served the humanist and the first dean of the city Giovan Battista Hodierna to delineate an ideal track and penitential time. The Duke did make a hill of the Church of Our Lady of Light, now a ruin. The course was divided into 18 stations, each one was a painting on each mystery. It was the Hodierna to describe the location where the application of Julius obtained a plenary indulgence to all of those who could get the pilgrims to the Holy Land, so difficult to visit. Palma is therefore presented as the Holy Land and the way to Calvary was a figurative paraphrase most important spiritual journey. What workers have assembled for the construction of the city is not known. The only known name is that of the architect Antonio Ragusa Di Marco, mentioned in the act of foundation of the Benedictine monastery (1637).
 
To this end, east and west, built the Church of the Nativity, the Church of the Holy House of Loreto and the Church of Our Lady of Light. The latter on Mount Calvary, of which today we can admire the imposing ruins. At Calvary ended the Via Crucis which, starting from the square in front of the Monastery wound for a long journey marked by 18 stations, decorated with scenes from the Stations of the Cross is Christ painted on slabs of plaster. The Calvary was such an integral part of a journey symbolic fruit of religion by Giovan Battista Hodierna, Ragusa, the first dean of the new foundation. The Duke Julius obtained by the Apostolic See the application of the same plenary indulgence which he earned in the Holy Land for those who had the ascetic path offered by the city of Palma. To assist pilgrims unsure Friday of Lent reached the figure of 5000, the Duke founded the Congregation of Clerks Minimum of Sacramento. The whole family was involved in the aura of mysticism, from which emerged the figures of Joseph's sons, Cardinal sanctified by a few years, and the Blessed Sister Maria Crocefissa. In Piazza Santa Rosalia facing the two most important buildings: the Cathedral Church and the Palazzo Ducale. The current piazza Matteotti until 1922 was the vast garden of the monastery.

The building now houses the municipal offices, is certainly one of the most beautiful late-Baroque heritage. Built in 1698 by Julius II, Duke of Palma and Prince of Lampedusa, was completed on December 8, 1712, feast of the Immaculate Mary and Cardinal Giuseppe Tomasi turned him over to the Fathers of St. Joseph Calasanz Piarists who settled the Institute of Pie in 800 schools that became a real University attended by several scions of the aristocracy island. Leaning against the palace is the Church of the Holy Family with it, constitutes a unique architectural complex.

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