Ischia. Aragonese castle. History
As established historians, the first fortification on the rock near the island of Ischia appeared in the year 474 BC. A small fortress was built siracuse tyrant (in Ancient Greece, the so-called rulers who came to power by force) Heron I and wore his name Kastrum has Heroes.
This was preceded by the intervention of a Heron in the war waged by the Etruscans from the Greek colony of Cuma, which was located where the districts of Naples and Bacoli Pozzuoli. Syracuse Navy ships expelled the Etruscans from the Bay of Lacco Ameno, in gratitude to the authorities of Cooma presented a Heron the whole island of Ischia. However, the island briefly belonged to Syracuse, do not feel in it necessity, he soon came under the control of the Greek city of Parthenope, the forerunner of the current Naples.
In the year 315 BC the Romans ousted the Greeks founded the island colony, known under the name Aenaria. The Romans built the fortress a few new towers that are used to monitor the movement of ships in the Gulf. Protected by a fortress on the site of today Ischia Ponte and the Map of the Novel began to settle farmers and fishermen. After the collapse of the Roman Empire in the 12th century, the island became an object of plunder for the European robbers - the Visigoths, the vandals and the Normans, and the African pirates in the next century on the island was attempted, the Swabians, the Angevins and then. In this period a well-fortified rock became a refuge for the local population at the time of the raids. To get to the castle was only possible by stairs on a slope, facing the island of vivara.
Eruption of ARSO 1301 years have flooded by lava of the city of Geronda (in place of the current Fiaiano), and its inhabitants began to settle around the castle where it was safer in all respects.
the castle received during the reign of the Anjou dynasty. In 1441 the king of Naples Alfonso V of Aragon began a serious fortification of the island, with the result that there was not only the Aragonese castle, and many of the guard towers in other parts of the island. The castle had massive walls around the perimeter, making the rock completely inaccessible. In those days, the population often suffered from attacks by Arab pirates and the Saracens, during their raids in the castle found shelter almost the entire population of the island.
at the same time the island was connected with the coast - first on a wooden bridge, then it was replaced by a stone Causeway.
part of the bridge adjacent to the castle, was raised in case of danger.
the Bridge ended in a strengthening, which housed the guard and the commandant of the fortress, where up of solid rock were cut through the course.
the heyday of the castle falls on the 16th century, then the island was inhabited by 1892 the family, it was a city with houses and farmland. The island was the bishopric of Ischia island, 13 churches, a convent of the poor, the Basilian Abbey Seminary.
the Castle became one of the cultural centers of Italy, in which it was turned by Vittoria Colonna, famous Poetes of the Renaissance. In 1509 Vittoria was married with Ferrante d Avalonia, son of the Governor of the island and a friend of her father, the Aragonese commander Fabrizio Colonna. Visiting Vittoria had the best writers and artists of the era, including Ariosto, Sannazaro, pontano, Michelangelo and many others.
In the second half of the eighteenth century, pirate raids ceased and people began to leave the castle, which did not allow to fully engage in agriculture.
In 1809 the English besieged the island, the squadron, allied to Napoleon. the garrison refused to surrender, and the fortress was subjected to artillery fire. The result was a completely destroyed the Cathedral and many other buildings. After the restoration of Bourbon dynasty on the island was only about 30 residents. In 1823 king Ferdinand IV gave the fortress prison for the participants of the Risorgimento (the Italian. risorgimento — revival) - national liberation movement, fought against foreign rule and for the unification of Italy into a single state. In 1860 the Sicilian Kingdom fell under the onslaught of the troops of Giuseppe Garibaldi and the prison in the Aragonese castle has been eliminated.
In 1912, the Administration of state ownership has put the island up for auction and the castle was sold to a private owner.
New owners opened in the bastions of Albergo Il Monastero, and equipped the territory of the island, making it the main attraction of Ischia.