Top Historic Sights in Scicli, Italy

Explore the historic highlights of Scicli

Late Baroque Town of Scicli

Scicli was founded by the Sicels (whence probably the name) around 300 BCE. In 864 CE, Scicli was conquered by the Arabs, as part of the Muslim conquest of Sicily. Under their rule it flourished as an agricultural and trade center. In 1091, it was conquered from the Arabs by the Normans, under Roger I of Hauteville, after a fierce battle. Following the various dynasties ruling the Kingdom of Sicily, it was an Aragonese-S ...
Founded: 17th century | Location: Scicli, Italy

Scicli Castle

The first development at Scicli was around the Castello dei tre cantoni at the top of San Matteo hill that overlooks the town. The Castello dei tre Cantoni is actually composed of two separate fortifications, the Castelluccio higher up and the Castellaccio at a lower level. This was a defensive structure that, over the centuries, was enlarged and used first by the Arabs, then by the Normans and then later as a military o ...
Founded: 13th century | Location: Scicli, Italy

Santa Maria la Nova Church

Santa Maria La Nova is a Baroque-style church in Scicli. A church at the site, dedicated to Santa Maria della Pietà, was present by the 6th-7th centuries. This church was destroyed during the Norman conquest. Reconstruction under the sponsorship of the Confraternity of the same name was funded by Pietro Di Lorenzo Busacca that, doing the will in 1567. The rebuilt church was then destroyed by the 1693 earthquake. Like m ...
Founded: 1801 | Location: Scicli, Italy

San Bartolomeo Church

A church at the site of current San Bartolomeo was present by the 15th century, but the frequent earthquakes that afflict Sicily, including a local tremor in 1693, may have forced the reconstruction of the church to begin in 1752. The facade transitions from late-Baroque to Neoclassical, starting with 18th-century designs by Antonio Mazza, modified later by Salvatore Alì and with the top completed in 1815 by Father Ventu ...
Founded: 1752 | Location: Scicli, Italy

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Gruyères Castle

The Castle of Gruyères is one of the most famous in Switzerland. It was built between 1270 and 1282, following the typical square plan of the fortifications in Savoy. It was the property of the Counts of Gruyères until the bankruptcy of the Count Michel in 1554. His creditors the cantons of Fribourg and Bern shared his earldom. From 1555 to 1798 the castle became residence to the bailiffs and then to the prefects sent by Fribourg.

In 1849 the castle was sold to the Bovy and Balland families, who used the castle as their summer residency and restored it. The castle was then bought back by the canton of Fribourg in 1938, made into a museum and opened to the public. Since 1993, a foundation ensures the conservation as well as the highlighting of the building and the art collection.

The castle is the home of three capes of the Order of the Golden Fleece. They were part of the war booty captured by the Swiss Confederates (which included troops from Gruyères) at the Battle of Morat against Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy in 1476. As Charles the Bold was celebrating the anniversary of his father's death, one of the capes is a black velvet sacerdotal vestment with Philip the Good's emblem sewn into it.

A collection of landscapes by 19th century artists Jean-Baptiste-Camille Corot, Barthélemy Menn and others are on display in the castle.