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Santa Severa, Lazio, Italy

Santa Severa

Cities and Towns in Lazio

The Castle of Santa Severa is an amazing location to visit during your stay in Italy.  It rises over the place of Pyrgi, the port city linked to the anticient Caere, current Cerveteri founded between the end of the seventh and beginning of the sixth century BC. The Etruscan city of Pyrgi extended all around the port for about 10 hectares, including, besides the area occupied by the castellan district, also the area of the sanctuary located at the south end, subject to excavating by the Institute of Etruscology of the Università la Sapienza of Rome, for over fifty years now.

Over the third century BC, with the Romanization of the coast area, over the Etruscan built-up area was founded the castrum romano of Pyrgi, surrounded by strong polygonal-shape walls. The place was probably inhabited non stop until Late Antiquity (forth-fifth century BC) and it was exactly thanks to the continuty of life over the remains of the castrum that in Medieval times, the village known as Castellum Sanctae Severae was formed.

The actual Castle was built in the fourteenth century and the village was formed gradually in different building stages over the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries.

Over the centuries, the ownership of the Castle has gone through many owners until 1482, when it was transfered to the Order of the Holy Spirit and remained theirs for well five hundred years until 1980. Between the sixteenth and seventeenth century, it was also a place where many popes rested and stayed, for example: Gregory XIII, Sixtus V and Urban VIII. After a period of great splendour reached exactly in the seventeenth century, the Castle has experienced a long and slow decay. In 1943 it was used by Germans as a strategic military emplacement. Today, the ownership of the monumental complex belongs to the Lazio Region, that has trusted Santa Marinella Town Council to manage it.

 

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