Aragonese Castle



The Aragonese Castle of Reggio Calabria is located in the namesake square and is, along with the Bronzes of Riace, one of the main symbols of the city. Although known as "Aragon", the building has more ancient origins. In ancient times, the area was a focal point for the protection of the defensive system of the city: the boundary of palaiapolis (Palepoli, the ancient city founded in the eighth century BC by calcidesi) had as its lower corner the area of ​​the Castle. The hill maintained its role as a military fortress also in the Hellenistic period, with the expansion of the city to the sea; in Roman times, the walls were abandoned, only to be rebuilt under the Emperor Justinian I, in defense of the role that Reggio covered in links between Italy and Constantinople. It created a fortified center able to protect the port of the city and the entire southern Calabria. The documented existence of a real castle dates from the year 536. In 1059 the fortress passed by the Byzantines to the Normans, and in 1266 to Charles I of Anjou, undergoing changes and extended many times: the Swabian structure stood until the earthquake of 1908, with a square construction and four corner towers. All restorations were aimed at adapting the structure evolution of siege engines and artillery with gunpowder: in 1450, during the Spanish domination, were added two large towers, a rampart and a ditch (powered by the stream Orangi); in 1539, Peter of Toledo made it increase the internal capacity, in order to accommodate a thousand people against the Turkish invasions. The plant remained virtually unchanged until the Risorgimento, when it was decided to convert it in  barracks and policy prison. Conquered by Garibaldi, the Castle was ousted by the new urban plan of the city, thinking several times to demolish it. Deliberately mutilated its oldest part, the Castle retains the two towers at the center of the square. For years seat of the National Institute of Geophysics, is now closed to the public.

Informazioni Utili
4J4V+9J, Reggio di Calabria
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Last update: Oct 20, 2023 8:55 AM