Ventimiglia Castle in Geraci Siculo
Giuseppe Fazio - CC4.0
The Ventimiglia Castle in Geraci Siculo rises above a massive sandstone rock and the few remains suggest the image of an exceptional bulwark, the result of a mixture of works defenses created by man and defenses provided by nature.
It is believed that the castle was built in the Byzantine age and that it was the first western defense of the area which later became the vast county of Geraci. The castle had a military structure such as to withstand even long sieges. The first fortified nucleus dates back to the mid-eighth century, in the period in which the Byzantines, threatened by the Arab invasion, took refuge in the Sicilian hinterland; the construction of the tower can be traced back to the Norman period in the mighty cantonal of the north-west corner; in the first decades of the fourteenth century the castle reached its definitive structure.
The southern front rests on a vertical rocky wall, has a thickness of about one and a half meters, shows an external scarp face and has a single still existing opening , a mullioned window with a central column and seats on the jambs. A short distance away there is a small single lancet window defined by a trefoil arch.
The current access to the castle opens on the northern side via a ramp partly carved into the rock that flows into the side portal of the chapel. At the meeting of the north and west sides there is a tall and powerful cantonal which is believed to belong to a Norman-era corner tower. Near the chapel there are two large, well-preserved cisterns, partly dug into the rock and covered by lowered barrel vaults, the interior of which is covered with a thick layer of waterproof plaster based on earthenware.
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