The richest site by its strata on the Brijuni stretches on an area somewhat greater than 1 hectare. Finds from the period of the Roman Republic and Empire, Late Antiquity, Eastern Goths, Byzantium, Carolingian period and Venice testify to the long time settlement. The first villa in Dobrika Bay was built in the 1st century BC.
During Augustus' rule, partly on the site of the first villa, a new villa rustica was erected (size 51x59 meters) with a central courtyard and equipment for producing olive oil and wine, as well as cellars, and modestly arranged housing units.
Life within the villa went on until the end of the 4th century when due to social changes the villa grew into a closely-built-type settlement with houses, olive and grapes processing plants, storage rooms, workshops, blacksmith workshop, ovens, briefly, all elements necessary for an independent life of a community. The settlement gradually grew, and strong walls were erected for its protection. Apart from the main, northeastern entrance, there were four other gates that were connected within the settlement, and smaller squares were also formed. St. Mary's basilica, erected in the close vicinity was to serve the cultic needs of the numerous population of the castrum.
The Frankish rule at the end of the 8th century introduced a new feudal property. The walls of the Carolingian villa were articulated by lesenes, while oil, at the time, was produced in the rooms by the sea. The entire process of oil production, from grinding of olives in the mill to pressing in one of the three presses is depicted here.
Life in the castrum was last evidenced during the Venetians.References:
The eight towns in south-eastern Sicily, including Ragusa, were all rebuilt after 1693 on or beside towns existing at the time of the earthquake which took place in that year. They represent a considerable collective undertaking, successfully carried out at a high level of architectural and artistic achievement. Keeping within the late Baroque style of the day, they also depict distinctive innovations in town planning and urban building. Together with seven other cities in the Val di Noto, it is part of a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In 1693 Ragusa was devastated by a huge earthquake, which killed some 5,000 inhabitants. Following this catastrophe the city was largely rebuilt, and many Baroque buildings from this time remain in the city. Most of the population moved to a new settlement in the former district of Patro, calling this new municipality 'Ragusa Superiore' (Upper Ragusa) and the ancient city 'Ragusa Inferiore' (Lower Ragusa). The two cities remained separated until 1926, when they were fused together to become a provincial capital in 1927.