Around 1140 Roger II, King of Sicily, transformed the old Saracen tower of Punta Troia in a real castle in defense of western end of the richest and most powerful kingdom in the Mediterranean at that time.
In subsequent periods Swabian domination, Angevin and Aragonese Marettimo followed the fate of Sicily, accentuating an isolation that had its peak during the long Spanish rule, when the western part of the island became a receptacle for pirates and privateers of all the reams, with a prevalence of those Saracens. The few inhabitants were forced to live in caves and the only real oversight of the central government was made up of the castle and its increasingly small garrison.
In the late 18th century the island began to be populated on a permanent basis. At that time, King Ferdinand IV of Bourbon, pushed by the enlightened viceroy Caracciolo, began timid attempts at government reform and enhancement of the kingdom territories. With the French Revolution, the castle became horrid prison, especially for political prisoners: in 1793, in times of anti-Jacobin repression and famine, Castle had well 52 political prisoners, crammed into a prison created in an old cistern called 'the pit”.
In 1844 King Ferdinand II abolished the castle. Together fell into disrepair the nearby church dedicated to St. Anne and the chapel dedicated to Our Lady.
Today the town is enclosed in a single agglomeration no longer 300 meters wide 200. Residents live mostly of tourism, but in the not too distant past, most of the population was made up of very valid sea-faring, experts and salting fish, not last, like good farmers and beekeepers.References:
Roman Walls of Lugo are an exceptional architectural, archaeological and constructive legacy of Roman engineering, dating from the 3rd and 4th centuries AD. The Walls are built of internal and external stone facings of slate with some granite, with a core filling of a conglomerate of slate slabs and worked stone pieces from Roman buildings, interlocked with lime mortar.
Their total length of 2117 m in the shape of an oblong rectangle occupies an area of 1.68 ha. Their height varies between 8 and 10 m, with a width of 4.2 m, reaching 7 m in some specific points. The walls still contain 85 external towers, 10 gates (five of which are original and five that were opened in modern times), four staircases and two ramps providing access to the walkway along the top of the walls, one of which is internal and the other external. Each tower contained access stairs leading from the intervallum to the wall walk of town wall, of which a total of 21 have been discovered to date.
The defences of Lugo are the most complete and best preserved example of Roman military architecture in the Western Roman Empire.
Despite the renovation work carried out, the walls conserve their original layout and the construction features associated with their defensive purpose, with walls, battlements, towers, fortifications, both modern and original gates and stairways, and a moat.
Since they were built, the walls have defined the layout and growth of the city, which was declared a Historical-Artistic Ensemble in 1973, forming a part of it and becoming an emblematic structure that can be freely accessed to walk along. The local inhabitants and visitors alike have used them as an area for enjoyment and as a part of urban life for centuries.
The fortifications were added to UNESCO"s World Heritage List in late 2000 and are a popular tourist attraction.