Tag Archives: history

20 stunning images of Pantalica Necropolis

Pantalica, Syracuse, Sicily, is located on a limestone promontory and is best known for its rock-cut tombs (13th to 7th centuries BC.).

Surrounded by a deep gorge formed by Calcinara and Anapo rivers, is also an important nature reserve (Riserva Naturale Orientata Pantalica): bat caves, flora and fauna. The area is crossed by a disused railway track, dismantled in 1956. [Wikipedia]

Check Pantalica local map at the bottom


Weird Italy pantalica-001 20 stunning images of Pantalica Necropolis Italian History Magazine What to see in Italy  tombs Syracuse sicily railway track pantalica necropolis nature reserve Magna Graecia history Calcinara archeology anapo

Who built the tombs?

In the 13th century BC, some coastal settlements were abandoned, possibly due to the arrival of the Sicels in the island and the onset of more unsettled conditions. The Sicels were an Italic tribe who inhabited eastern Sicily during the Iron Age. Their neighbours to the west were the Sicani. [Wikipedia]

The Sicels gave Sicily the name it has held since antiquity, but they rapidly fused into the culture of Magna Graecia.

New large sites, like Pantalica, appeared in the hilly coastal hinterlands, probably chosen for defensive reasons.
Pantalica evidently flourished for about 600 years, from about 1250 to 650 BC. The current name of the site probably dates from the Early Middle Ages or Arab period. The ancient name of the site is uncertain, but is associated by some archaeologists with Hybla, after a Sicel king named Hyblon, who is mentioned by Thucydides in connection with the foundation of the early Greek colony at Megara Hyblaea in the year 728 BC. For several centuries before Greek colonization, Pantalica was undoubtedly one of the main sites of eastern Sicily, dominating the surrounding territory, including subsidiary settlements. By about 650 BC, however, it seems to have been a victim of the expansion of the city of Syracuse, which established an outpost at Akrai (Palazzolo Acreide) at this time. Nevertheless, it was still occupied during classical antiquity, since finds of the 4th-3rd centuries BC (Hellenistic period) are attested, as well as during the late antique or Byzantine periods. After the 12th century it was probably largely deserted, and overshadowed by Sortino.


Weird Italy pantalica-002 20 stunning images of Pantalica Necropolis Italian History Magazine What to see in Italy  tombs Syracuse sicily railway track pantalica necropolis nature reserve Magna Graecia history Calcinara archeology anapo

The remains visible today consist mainly of numerous prehistoric burial chambers cut into the limestone rock, sometimes provided with a porch or short entrance corridor in front of the burial chamber, originally sealed with stones or a slab.

There are also some larger rock-cut houses of uncertain date (often said to be Byzantine, but possibly of earlier origin). The so-called anaktoron, or princely palace, located near the top of the hill, is also controversial. Thought by some archaeologists originally to have been a Late Bronze Age building, inspired by palatial buildings of the Greek (Mycenaean) Bronze Age, it was more certainly occupied in the Byzantine period. The remains of a large defensive ditch, cut into the limestone, are clearly visible at Filiporto (on the western side of the promontory, nearest to Ferla). This probably dates to the 4th century BC and represents a defensive work of Greek military design, possibly in line with a policy of Dionysius of Syracuse, designed to secure allied sites in the hinterland. There are also three small Medieval rock-cut chapels popularly called the Grotta del Crocifisso (near the North cemetery), Grotta di San Nicolicchio (on the southern side) and Grotta di San Micidario (at Filiporto), which preserve very faint traces of frescoes and attest the presence of small monastic communities.

Weird Italy pantalica-003 20 stunning images of Pantalica Necropolis Italian History Magazine What to see in Italy  tombs Syracuse sicily railway track pantalica necropolis nature reserve Magna Graecia history Calcinara archeology anapo

The site was mainly excavated between 1895 and 1910 by the distinguished Italian archaeologist, Paolo Orsi, although most of the tombs had already been rifled or emptied long before his time. The finds excavated by Orsi are on display in the Archaeological Museum in Syracuse. They include characteristic red-burnished pottery vessels and metal objects, including weaponry (small knives and daggers) and items of dress, such as bronze fibulae (brooches) and rings, which were placed with the deceased in the tombs. Most of the tombs contained between 1 and 7 individuals of all ages and both sexes. Many tombs were evidently re-opened periodically in order to admit more burials. The average human life span at this time was probably around 30 years of age. The size of the prehistoric population is hard to estimate from the available data, but might easily have been 1000 people or more. [Wikipedia]



Wikipedia 1 , Wikipedia 2




Vie Cave: Ancient paths of Etruscan people carved into the rocks

An impressive Etruscan road network, vertically carved into the tuff (sometimes 6 meters high), links Pitigliano, Sovana and Sorano, in Maremma, Tuscany.

Continue reading Vie Cave: Ancient paths of Etruscan people carved into the rocks

Cities built by the Romans (The big list)

The list of cities built by the Romans over the centuries is impressive.

Some of the following cities may have been founded by other people, but have gained importance only with the Romans. The list is incomplete and it will be updated. If you find some mistake or if you have any suggestion, please comment below.Weird Italy lazio Cities built by the Romans (The big list) Italian History Magazine  rome romans roman empire roman cities paris london list history cities built by the romans

Thanks to /r/History for the help!

Cities founded by the Romans


Aosta (Augusta Praetoria)
Aquileia (destroyed by Huns)
Belluno (Belum)
Bologna (Bononia)
Caserta (Calatia)
Cremona (Cremona)
Ferrara (castrum bizantino was a Roman camp; Ferrara appears first in a document of the Lombard king Desiderius of 753 AD.)
Forlì (Forum Livii)
Iglesias (Ecclesia)
Lecce (Lupiae)
Macerata (Maceria or Macera)
Massa (Massa)
Monza (Modica)
Oristano (Aristius )
Pavia (Ticinum)
Piacenza (Placentia)
Pistoia (Pistorium, Pistoria or Piastoriae)
Pordenone (Portus Naonis)
Potenza (Potentia)
Ragusa (Rogos)
Reggio Emilia (Regium Lepidi)
Rimini (Ariminum)
Rome (obvious)
Salerno (Salernum)
Torino (Augusta Taurinorum)
Vicenza (Vicetia, Vincentia or Vicentia)
Concordia Sagittaria (Iulia Concordia – thanks to Ramon_Cogoleto)
Oderzo (Opitergium – thanks to Ramon_Cogoleto)

Cherchell (Cesarea)


Schwechat (Ala Nova)
Fischamend (Aequinoctium)
Leibnitz (Flavia Solva)
Lienz (Aguntum)
Vienna (Vindobona)
Wels (Ovilava – thanks to justutis)
Enns (Lauriacum – thanks to justutis)
Zollfeld (Virunum – thanks to justutis)
Salzburg (Iuvavum – thanks to forgetaboutmary)
Zirl in Tirol (Teriolis)
Linz (Lentia)
Wallsee-Sindelburg bei Amstetten (Ad Iuvense)
Pöchlarn  (Arelape)
Traismauer (Augustianis)
Zwentendorf an der Donau (Asturis)
Tulln an der Donau (Comagena)
Zeiselmauer-Wolfpassing (Cannabiaca)


Tongeren (Atuatuca Tungrorum, thanks to Yavanaril)


Osijek (Mursa – thanks to djaponja)
Sisak (Siscia- thanks to djaponja)
Rijeka,Trsat (Tarsatica- thanks to djaponja)
Ploče (Pretoria- thanks to djaponja)
Metković (Narona- thanks to djaponja)
Omišalj (Fulfinum – Mirine- thanks to djaponja)
Karin (Corinium- thanks to djaponja)
Kistanje (Burnum- thanks to djaponja)
Šćitarjevo (Andautonia- thanks to djaponja)
Čitluk (Aequum- thanks to djaponja)
Crikvenica (Ad turres- thanks to djaponja)


Lyon (Colonia Copia Claudia Augusta Lugdunum)
Paris (Lutetia Parisiorum)
Metz (Divodurum)
Beauvais (Caesaromagus)
Châlons-en-Champagne (Catalauni)
Amiens (Samarobriva)
Besançon (Vesontio)

Augsburg (Augusta Vindelicorum)
Bonn (Bonna)
Cologne / Köln (Colonia Agrippina)
Ellingen (Castellum Sablonetum – thanks to UnmercatorGreenland)
Frankfurt am Main (The city district Bonames has a name probably dating back to Roman times—it is thought to be derived from bona me(n)sa – thank to cpsartory)
Mainz (Mogontiacum)
Neuss (Novaesium)
Theilenhofen (Iciniacum – thanks to UnmercatorGreenland)
Trier (Augusta Treverorum)
Weißenburg (Biriciana – thanks to UnmercatorGreenland)
Xanten (Castra Vetera)
Walting (Vetoniana)
Kösching (Castelum Germanicum)
Pförring (Celeusum)
Eining (Abusina)
Stadt Straubing in Niederbayern (Sorviodurum)
Künzing in Niederbayern (Quintanis)
Kellmünz in Schwaben (Caelius Mons)
Kempten im Allgäu (Cambodunum)
Isny im Allgäu (Vemania)
Schlögen (Ioviacum)
Mautern an der Donau (Favianis)


Chester (Deva Victrix)
Chester-le-Street (Concangis)
Cirencester (Corinium Dobunnorum)
Gloucester (Colonia Nervia Glevensium)
Exeter (Isca Dumnoniorum)
Leicester (Ratae Corieltauvorum – thanks to markw1988)
Lincoln (Colonia Domitiana Lindensium)
London (Londinium)
Loughor (Leucarum)
Manchester (Mancunium, Mamucium)
Mancetter (Manduessedum)
Usk (Burrium)
York (Ebocarum, thanks to PhysTom and Furthur_slimeking)
Newcastle upon Tyne (Pons Aelius – thanks to abandoned_trolley)
Corbridge (Coria – thanks to abandoned_trolley)
South Shields (Arbeia – thanks to abandoned_trolley)
Wallsend (Segedunum – thanks to abandoned_trolley)


Komárom (Colonia Claudia Savaria)
Sopron, Ödenburg (Scarabantia)
Mosonmagyaróvár (Ad Flexum)
Győr (Arrabona)
Visegrád (Quadriburgium)
Budapest (Aquincum)
Sz?ny (Brigetio)


Caesarea (thanks to jstein97)


Voorburg (Forum Hadriani – thanks to LaoBa)
Nijmegen (Ulpia Noviomagus – thanks to LaoBa)


Alba Iulia (Apulum)


Nis (Naissus – thanks to kolibri29)
Sremska Mitrovica (Sirmium – thanks to kolibri29)
Kostolac (Viminacium – thanks to kolibri29)


Ptuj (Poetovio)
Ljubljana (Emona)
Celje (Celeia)
Birnbaumer Wald (Ad Pirum)
Ajdovščina (Castra)


Buseira (Circesium)


Astorga (Asturica or Asturica Augusta)
Zaragoza (Cesaraugusta)
Cordoba (Corduba)
Mérida (Augusta Emerita)
León (Legio)
Seville (Hispalis)
Tarragona (Tarraco)
Huesca (Osca, Calagurris)
Valencia (Valentia)
A Coruña (Brigantium – thanks to Highlord)
Lugo (Lucus Augusta – thanks to Highlord)
Palencia (Palantia – thanks to Highlord)
Avila (Ovil – thanks to Highlorda)
Girona (Ullastret – thanks to Highlord)
Ampurias (Emporiae – thanks to Highlord)
Tarragona (Tarraco – thanks to Highlord)
Sagunto (Saguntum – thanks to Highlord)
Murcia (Cigarralejo – thanks to Highlord)
Baza (Baza – thanks to Highlord)
Santinponce (Italica – thanks to Highlord)
Mérida (Emerita Augusta – thanks to Highlord)
Lérida (Toletum – thanks to Highlord)
Albacete (Castellar – thanks to Highlord)
Écija (Astigi – thanks to Highlord)
Astorga (Asturica – thanks to Highlord)
Santander (Portus Victoriae Iuliobrigensium – thanks to Highlord)


Saint-Maurice (Agaunum)
Avenches (Aventicum)
Lausanne (Lousonna)
Nyon (Noviodunum , Colonia Iulia Equestris)
Orbe (Urba)
Yverdon-les-Bains (District. Eburodunum , Ebredunum)
Windisch AG (Vindonissa)
Augst and Kaiseraugst (Augusta Raurica – thanks to caoimhin22)
Winterthur (Vitudurum – thanks to abart)
Zurich (Turicum – thanks to abart)
Arbon in der Schweiz (Arbor Felix)


Coimbra (Municipium Aeminium – thanks to PunchingClouzot)
Póvoa de Varzim (Villa Euracini)


Haïdra (Ammaedara)


Caerleon (Isa Augusta – thanks to Schmillt)

Cities not founded by the Romans but have gained importance with the Romans


Altino (Altinum – thanks to Ramon_Cogoleto)
Ascoli (Asculum)
Avellino (Abellinum)
Bari (Barium)

Brescia (Brixia)
Milano (Mediolanum)
Padova (Patavium)
Como (Comum)
Bolzano (Bauzanum)
Cuneo (Cuneus)
Firenze (Florentia)
Reggio Calabria (Regium Iulium)
Rieti (Reate)
Viterbo (Castrum Herculis)
Civitavecchia (Centumcellae)
Terni (Interamna Nahars)
Lodi (Laus Pompeia)
Mondragone (Sinuessa, Petrinum – thanks to porcellus_ultor)


Tébessa (Theveste)


Bregenz (Brigantia, Brigantium)


Vidin (Bononia)


Senj (Senia- thanks to djaponja)
Split (Salona – thanks to Sp3ctr3)


Bath (Aquae Sulis) – thanks to BigRedS
Canterbury (Durovernum Cantiacorum) – thanks to Furthur_slimeking
Colchester (Camulodunum)
St Albans (Verulamium) – thanks to BigRedS
Salisbury (Old Sarum, Sorviodunum – thanks to oh_him )


Boulogne-sur-Mer (Bononia)
Harfleur (Caracotinum)
Nimes (Nemausus)
Strasbourg (Argentoratum o Argentorate)
Reims (Durocortorum, thanks to njm1314)


Passau (Castra Batava, Batavis, before known as Boiodurum)
Regensburg (Castra Regina)


Lebda (Leptis Magna – thanks to porcellus_ultor)


Skopje (Scupi)


Alphen aan den Rijn (Castellum Albanianae)
Katwijk (Lugdunum Batavorum)
Leiden (Matilo)
Nijmegen (Oppidum Batavorum)
Maastricht (Trajectum ad Mosam)
Utrecht (Trajectum ad Renum)
Valkenburg (Praetorium Agrippinae)
Velsen (Flevum o Phleum)


Belgrade (Singidunum)


Bosra (Nova Trajana Bostra)


Alicante (Lucentum)
Almuñecar (Firmium Julium Sexi – thanks to Highlord)
Barcelona (Barkeno, Barcino, Colonia Iulia Augusta Faventia Paterna Barcino)
Lugo (Lucus Augusti)
Cartagena (Carthago Nova – thanks to El_Kyle)
Granada (Elvira – thanks to Highlord)
Malaga (Malaca – thanks to Highlord)
Cádiz (Gades – thanks to Highlord)
Huelva (Onuba – thanks to Highlord)
Salamanca (Salmantica – thanks to Highlord)
Segovia (thanks to Highlord)


Sion (Sedunum)
Chur (Curia Raetorum)


Évora (Ebora Cerealis – thanks to porcellus_ultor)
Lisbon (Olisipo – thanks to porcellus_ultor)
Braga (Bracara Augusta – thanks to PunchingClouzot)
Bragança (Brigantia)
Leiria (Collipo)
Elvas (Dipo)
Alvor (Ipses)
Lamego (Lamecum)
Loriga (Lorica)
Santiago do Cacém (Mirobriga Celticorum)
Porto (Portus Cale)
Portimão (Portus Hannibalis)
Covilhã (Tritum)


Istanbul (Nova Roma ; Byzantium)
Zeugma, Commagene (Zeugma)

Cities with Roman legendary origins


Liquian (the legendary lost roman legion built this town fleeing from Persia)


Psitrend , Wikipedia , Reddit

Special thanks to all Reddit.com/r/History users for their suggestions and support!

Weird Italy roman-painting Cities built by the Romans (The big list) Italian History Magazine  rome romans roman empire roman cities paris london list history cities built by the romans