Civita Castellana

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In this place long ago, Falerii was born, the ancient capital of the Falisci, that was fortified by the surrounding nature with high and rugged rocks: Italic ethnic strongly influenced by Etruscan culture and following to the letter the historical events of Neio in the battle against Rome. After many military events, defeats, armistices, treaties, alliances, during the IV century and the year 241 B.C. due to the umpteenth revolt, the Romans conquered, looted and then forced the inhabitants to build a new centre on the plain, thus, Falerii. The tufaceous spur bordered by the waters of the Tio Maggiore - Purgatorio in the north, the Rio Filetto in the south and Treia in the west was reinforced by a large wall in the east where today we can still see the majestic Sangallo fort.
It is one of the most famous examples of military architecture of the Renaissance period that exploited the Falisco preparation for defence. The urban centre did not only cover the prominent political role of the region but also the religious role. Besides the examples of religious terra cotta ex-voto there are remains of Etruscan architecture - Falisca decorations in slabs and polychrome high - reliefs. In the town are the ruins of the temple of Scasato (the end of IV-III cent. B.C.) also known as Apollo because of a clay buste of the god that was discovered there, close to the heroic portrait of Alexander the Great by Lisippo and an expressive head of Zeus. In the adjacent rise of Vignale there are another two places of worship, known as the temples Minor and Major (the end of the VI-III cent. B.C.) where antefixes were found in the heads of Slleno, Menadi, Giunone Sospita and the statues of the face of Mercury.
Below, along the Rio Purgatorio route, we find the santuaries of the Sassi Caduti (V-I cent. B.C.) dedicated to Mercury with a polychrome acroterium with two fighting warriors of the Cappuccini and of Celle (VI B.C.-II cent. A.D.) had fairly modest chamber tombs that were arranged with simple benches in niches dug out in the walls. The necropoli are outstretched onto rocks near Penna, Valsiarosa, Ferrano, Colonette, Cappuccini, Montarano and Celle. On the inside there are rich objects where the wealthy production of Falsca ceramics was introduced from IV-III cent. B.C., that in a certain sense is still alive today and for many modern factories, the pivot of Civita Castellana's economy. In the previously mentioned Sangallo fort is the Falisco Agro Museum with numerous exhibits of the history and culture of this population that dates from X-I cent. B.C. Other archeological artefacts include the splendid architectural decorations of temples and can be seen in the Museum of Villa Giulia in Rome.

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