Article zero : Scicli
Hello my friends, here is the first article of my blog!
Being – as mentioned – the very first article, it will be a disorganized and pathetic jumble of disconnected phrases, but that’s okay and I’m aware of it 🙂
In these first days I went around this fantastic and pretty town in south-eastern Sicily: Scicli! Famous in recent times thanks to the fiction of Montalbano, as well as the inclusion of the heritage of the Late Baroque Cities of the Val di Noto, Scicli has grown in recent years of increasing popularity. Now, in this article I want to indicate those that I think are the places that have fascinated me most of this town!
The access to the church is very simple, apart from the small road uphill that you have to travel, which if done on an empty stomach or full stomach will still break your breath. However, the pleasure of walking along this road that leads to the ancient city, until reaching the ancient square of the church is something truly priceless. Unfortunately, the church can not be visited inside; if you want to be crazy and climb on the ledge and enjoy a beautiful view, you can do it quietly, it’s easier to do than to say 😉
Once up on the hill the things that can be done are endless: continue along the path that runs along the church and reach the Castellaccio and the Castle of the three Cantons, or continue on all the streets and alleys that surround the church and discover the ancient settlements which once constituted the city of Scicli. Following a particular road, you can even find the ancient steps leading to the floor below, on the side of the district of San Bartolomeo, flanked by several groups of caves arranged along the side of the hill.
Here the video about Scicli and San Matteo, subtitled in English 🙂
Here the Video about Castellazzo and Castello dei Tre Cantoni 🙂
The archaeological park of Chiafura is also full of charm, one of the many examples of rock art in the eastern part of Sicily, or to be more precise, in the Hyblean belt. Located on the side of the hill of San Matteo, Chiafura was initially a Sicilian necropolis (datable between the fifth and seventh centuries after Christ) and then with the Arab conquest (864 AD) assumed the forms of a real settlement. This occurred as an attempt to defend against invading peoples, leaving the marine settlements to settle in safer form inland. This phenomenon has been called “incastellamento”. In fact, it is believed that the Castle of the three Cantons (located just above Chiafura) was built precisely for this purpose of defense and control of the urban area against the enemy.
This story, we will see during the trip, will reoccur in many other places in Sicily.
3: Convent of Sant’Antonino
Surprisingly fascinating – and here I fall too much in the personal side, but it is my weakness – it is the Convent of Sant’Antonino. Dedicated to Sant’Antonio da Padova, but vulgarly named “Sant’Antonino” is perhaps the most interesting religious structure on the territory of Scicli.
There is an incredible aura of magic on it which made it survive from the disastrous earthquake of 1693, remaining standing until today. Ironically, a precious gem like this, a living example of a forgotten or completely lost architecture, is totally left in a state of abandonment.
Yet there is.
The road is not what a person really desires, because it is necessary, indeed, you have to cover the railway tracks for a while to access and then duel with weeds and brambles, which have become the true masters of the entire area. What is in front of us, however, is something truly priceless. What remains of the building and of the Church, built in 1300, and the dome, built in the 1400s, exude charm, wonder and at the same time oblivion. Yes, because the more time passes, the more these qualities are increasingly forgotten and at the risk of their existence. Time passes, generations follow one after the other and we do nothing except watching this slow but inexorable process of decomposition. Who knows, maybe when there are four stones left one against the other someone from his comfortable pillow will wake up screaming:
– It’s time to turn the page! It’s time to change this story and bring our convent back to life!
Will it be too late?
… To you