A church at the site of current Santa Marta was present by the 13th century, originally dedicated to St Calimero. In 1386, it housed the flagellant Confraternity of the Disciplini of St Marta, who added a hospice and rededicated the church. The church has been refurbished over the centuries. The facade dates to 1720–1730.
The interior ceiling has a late 17th-century fresco, depicting the Glory of St Martha, by Giovanni Battista and Carlo Pozzo, and the church houses a 17th-century processional statue on the main altar of the Madonna of the Rosary and Child. The altar has 16th century marble sculpture busts of the apostles; the altar was refurbished in 1816 likely by Giuseppe Bovara. The lateral altars have statues of Santa Marta and San Antonio di Padova.References:
Castel del Monte, located in the municipality of Andria, rises on a rocky hill dominating the surrounding countryside of the Murgia region. A unique piece of medieval architecture, it was completed in 1240. The castle’s location, its perfect octagonal shape, as well as the mathematical and astronomical precision of its layout all reflect the broad education and cultural vision of its founder, Emperor Frederick II.
As a leader of modern humanism, the Germanic Emperor brought scholars together in his court from throughout the Mediterranean, combining Eastern and Western traditions. The castle’s unique design, an octagonal plan with octagonal towers at each angle, represents a search for perfection. Interior features reflect Eastern influences, such as the innovative hydraulic installation used by Frederick II for bathing in accord to the typical Arabic customs.
The site is of outstanding universal value in its formal perfection and its harmonious blending of cultural elements from northern Europe, the Muslim world and classical antiquity. Castel del Monte is a unique masterpiece of medieval architecture, reflecting the humanist ideas of its founder, Frederick II of Hohenstaufen.