Si Trova: a Sant'Alessio
Lat: 37° 54' 49.13833" N - Long: 15° 20' 47.65688" E
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This castle stands on the beautiful rocky promontory Capo Sant'Alessio.
It plays a very important role from a strategic point of view, being the only promontory to rise along the Ionian coast between Messina and Taormina; for this reason all the armies historically present in Sicily have contributed to the construction of the castle on its summit.
The castle consists of two towers, one with a rectangular plan and the other with a circular plan, and a boundary wall.
The Romans first built a fortification there.
During the Middle Ages, Forza d'Agrò was a center of great importance, and the territory of today's Sant'Alessio belonged to it.
The construction of the castle took place in these years on the initiative of Alessio I Comneno, as part of the wars conducted by Byzantium against the normans and the turks.
Due to its location, considered decisive in the event of a war, Sant'Alessio suffered several dominations over the centuries.
Certainly the castle belonged to the arabs, to the Normans, who introduced substantial changes to the structure of the manor that led to the today's form.
In 1608 the castle was purchased, with its barony, by Don Francesco Romeo from Randazzo; later it passed to the Paternò-Castello family.
In 1676, during the dispute between the French and Spanish, it became the food warehouse of the town of Messina.
At the beginning of the nineteenth century the English, to defend the coast from the attacks of the French, coming from Calabria, restructured the fortress by building the outer walls.
In 1900 the castle was purchased by Giovanni Impellizzeri.
From the area in front of the castle there are two underground galleries that run under it and end in two openings on the rock wall.
Here, during the Second World War, the German occupation troops positioned two artillery batteries.
The buildings at present are closed to the public, and partly dilapidated.
Today we discover...
Seat of the Targa Florio museum
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