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Open all days
Antimeridian time: dalle 09:30 alle 13:30
For any informations or reservations about Savoca Guided Tour, please contact Turistic Office:
tel 0942.761125 / fax. 0942.761014
CHURCH OF Saint Lucia AND MUSEUM "CITTA' Di SAVOCA"
INFO: CHURCH OF Saint Lucia temporary closed, work in progress
From Monday to Sunday
Antimeridian time from 09:30 to 13:30
Free enter for children under 12 years old.
- from 09:30 to 13:30 (from monday to sunday)
- from 15:00 to 19:00 , from monday to sunday for months from October to March
For information call 0942798769
The ancient village of Savoca, "Terra ferace di gagliardi ingegni"(a land giving birth to vigorous intellects) rises on a biapex hill, at 300 m above sea level. It is enclosed by the Agrò and Savoca torrents, surrounded by level grounds; the rest of the area is typically hilly, with slopping and terraced fields.
The name “Savoca” derives from a plant called “savucu”, that is a Sicilian word meaning elder plant.
According to some sources, Savoca was founded about the 1134 by Ruggero II, and it was a barony ruled by the pro tempore archimandrite of the monastery of SS. Salvatore in Messina, who had in Savoca another residence.
It is usual to believe that, long before the One Thousand year, the place was inhabited by the “pentefur”, a community of uncertain provenance that lived in the quarter that today is called like this.
The urbanistic development of Savoca started from the “Pentefur Rock”. During the Arabian domination a castle was built on the top of the rock: at the end of the Fourteenth Century it was strategically very important; today it is called “Saracen Castle”.
During the Middle Age Savoca was really a city, with a castle, a large boundary wall, administrative and judicial offices, two gates of delimitation; the entrance gate still exists.
During the late Fourteenth Century the Village developed over the wall; it was characterized by nice private buildings, some of that still exist.
The waste fruitful land subject to Savoca, well-known for wine and silk production, included the hamlets of Antillo, Missario, Casalvecchio, Pagliara, Locadi, Palme, “marina of Savoca” (today’s S.Teresa di Riva and some of Roccalumera).
In the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Centuries many churches were built, between which the monumental church of S.Lucia, collapsed in 1880 because of a landslide, together with the annexe convent of the Reverend Dominicans Fathers, built in the 1465: Dominicans were the ones who introduced the veneration for S.Lucia.
Many people of noble birth lived in Savoca in the Medieval and Renaissance period.
In the Sixteenth Century, with its 4469 inhabitants, Savoca was the most populated town in the district of Messina; the residences, some of which of great architectural value, "presentavano leggiadria″ (they was very nice).
Since 1492, a Jewish community lived in Savoca and there was a synagogue "nel centro e nel migliore luogo" (in the centre and in the best place).
All the people who ruled over Sicily influenced the usages, the toponymy and the architecture of Savoca, and that can be objectively verified.
Savoca always took part in the historical events concerning the city of Messina: the local historians proudly mention the capitulation of Savoca’s land "dinanzi alle armi francesi"(before French forces) provided, during the rebellion of Messina against Spain, on the 3rd of November 1676 in front of La Scaletta, between sixteen notables of Savoca and the Duke of Vivonne, representing His Majesty the King Luigi XIV.
At the end of Eighteenth Century Savoca was already on the wane, and it get worse, shortly before the unity of Italy, with the “sliding” of population and institutions downhill.
In 1948 Savoca regained its autonomy from S.Teresa di Riva, lost during the period of fascist.
Today the signs of renewal are clear; the history, the “seven-faced” landscape, the monuments, the legends and the popular traditions, that you can learn from elderly people, constitute a unrepeatable unicum, and make of Savoca, where every stone seems to tell a story, one of the most requested object of the Sicilian cultural tourism
History of Savoca on Artistic Ceramics
At the entrance of the village, in 1989, the lamented Messina’s artists Salvatore e Giuseppe Zona transposed, with masterly skill, history art and traditions of Savoca on artistic ceramics sculptured in low relief.
The panels, framed by bricks, represent the following themes:
- Savoca’s blazon with guide map of the town;
- Arrival of Norman knights at Savoca;
- Construction phases of Pentefur fortress;
- Architectural components like: mullioned window with two lights, the inside of the Mother Church, blazon of Trimarchi family;
- Mask of “Diavulazzu” (Sicilian word for the devil represented in S. Lucia’s feast-day);
- Representation of the patronal S. Lucia’s feast-day, with the “Diavulazzu” in foreground; some people are present to the representation, being identifiable by their initials: the Nobel prize-winner Salvatore Quasimodo, the dialectal poet Vann’Anto, the jurists Salvatore Pugliatti and Antonio Saitta, all them belong to the “Scocca’s Academy”. In the middle of the crowd there are the artists Giuseppe e Salvatore Zona (with their typical pipes).
The scene is drew from a real event;
- Sacred iconography;
- Savoca’s Way of the Cross;
- Farm tool and “pisatura” (Sicilian word for pounding) of the wheat in the threshing floor;
- The work in an ancient spinning-mill;
- The silkworm;
- Rituality around S. Michele’s Church;
- The cycle of the wine.
The panels frame municipal structures assigned to commercial exposures.