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Important archaeological explorations found some Stone Age villages scattered in the Iblei Mountains and the southern part of Sicily.
With the passage to Neolithic Age agriculture with its breeding, use of ceramics and the settlements in the first closed villages, the people who brought about this civilisation were shepherds and farmers who came from the East, and were of Mediterranean ancestry and language.
Around the Thirteenth and Twelfth century B.C. on this part of the island landed the Siculi that had wider technical capacities and were imbued in the Mediterranean culture.
Greek-Roman colonization.
The intense Greek colonization process which affected Eastern Sicily in the early Eighth century were mainly associated with events in Syracuse which became a true city state and Hellenic outpost. Furthermore, in 734 B.C. a group of Corinthians were the first to settle on Ortigia’s island.
Siracusa growth was rapid and tumultuous, due to a long series of social tensions that ended with the tyrant Gelone, founder of the Dinomenidi (485-478 B.C.). Under him the city was enlarged and went trough a period of particular splendour, culminated with the victory of Imera against the Carthaginians.
The pomp of Syracuse’s court also continued under its successor Gerone (478-467 B.C.), patron of the most celebrated poets and philosophers of that period. Later the city’s expansionistic aims brought about war with Athens, its competitor for power to the control the Mediterranean Sea. After a long siege the Athenians were definitively defeated in 413 B.C.
The threat of the Carthaginians was more dangerous, for after conquering Selinunte, Imera and Agrigento, they planned to colonise Siracusa too. Dionisio I (406-367 B.C.), after taking the command of the army, was able to contain this threat, and at the same time began a program to strengthen the city’s defences. But the war, through its highs and lows, continued under his successors, Timaleonte di Corinto and Agatocle. Under Ierone II (269-215 B.C.) Syracuse finally enjoyed a long period of prosperity and peace, until the Roman conquest of 212 B.C., in spite of strenuous resistance in which Archimedes played a first-class role with his ingenious war machines. Annexed into the province of Sicily, Syracuse ceased to be an independent city. After being plundered by Verre’s government during the Imperial age, Syracuse started to slide into decadence.
In 878 Syracuse was occupied by the Arabs, and then in 1038 was conquered by the Byzantines headed by Giorgio Maniace. After that the Normans came and then the Svevians, followed by the Fourteenth century conquest by the Aragonians.
Under the Spanish rule it became a military fortified town.
The violent earthquake that hit Eastern Sicily in 1693 caused great damages to the Siracusa’s area. Different urban realities like Augusta, Avola, Ferla, Francofone, Lentini, Noto, Palazzolo Acreide were seriously damaged or completely destroyed. Large part of the current lay-out or architecture of the Siracusa’s region was defined in the Seventeenth century, and from the ruins of a huge tragedy emerged urban and architectural lay-outs with an extraordinary value and originality: the newly built urban lay-out of Avola, the wonderful baroque centre of Noto, the territorial road lay-out of Palazzolo Acreide. Between the end of the Eighteenth century and the beginning of the Nineteenth century all the province, and specially Siracusa, were subject to profound transformations (building growth, creation of new districts).
During the Second World War Siracusa and part of its province were seriously damaged by the Anglo-American bombing, and after the landing of the allied armies, also by the German bombing. The new development of the city of Siracusa and its province should be related to its position, to the presence of a very good natural harbour, to its growth in the primary sector, to its tourist attractions, but mostly to the impetuous industrial development.


Canicattini Bagni
Palazzolo Acreide
Porto Palo di Capo Passero
Priolo Gargallo


Capo Passero
Eremo San Corrado
Fontane Bianche
Laghetti Di Avola
Marina Di Avola
Marina Di Noto
Noto Antica
Ponte Saraceno
Megara Hyblaea

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