Agira Castle

Agira Castle


 Via Castello - Agira (EN)

The Castle of Agira stands on the conical-shaped Mount Teja whose summit, occupied by the castle, reaches 820 meters above sea level
From historical sources it is known that in the Sican period the Palace already existed, in which the Heads of the first Agiri lived and in which the Sicilian princes-tyrants subsequently lived. In addition to the Castle, it is said that there was a wall fortification equipped with a Cyclopean gate. During the Greek, Roman and Byzantine period, the Castle only played a representative role for the use of the various authorities of the city. With the Arabs, however, it regained its original role, returning once again a fortress and construction of primary interest. In 1354 the Castle hosted Ludovico d'Aragona. In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, having lost its military function, it began to decline until it became a ruin already in the eighteenth century. During the earthquake of 1693, the keep of the castle collapsed and the octagonal central tower was severely damaged. Today the castle is a ruin.
The fortification of the city was made up of three walls: the first circled the mountain immediately below the castle; the second circumscribed a lower part of the mountain; the third, very irregular because it followed the course of the rocks, developed at the height of the Rocche di San Pietro.
The conspicuous remains of the castle are more on the west side, and consist of parts of the curtain interspersed with three towers of different plant and size. The first tower, located on the southwest corner of the wall, has a rectangular trapezoid plan. The tower is preserved for a single elevation in addition to the ground floor. Inside, the ground floor was separated from the first street by a wooden attic evidenced by the holes for the heads of the beams. It is believed that the main access to the castle was located next to the second tower, with an octagonal plan, of which only the perimeter walls remain, counting underground. There is then a third tower, with an almost square plan, which the destruction of the surrounding wall has left completely isolated, which rises astride a natural escarpment. The tower has a single room covered by a broken barrel vault and illuminated, as well as by the door, by two splayed loopholes. Inside the inner walls there is, among the ruins, the church of San Filippo of a fairly recent period, and a vast semi-underground environment, probably a cistern.

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