The charm of history and the legend of a treasure: the castello di Favara

castles of Sicily: il castello di Favara

The charm of an ancient building meets the legend of a fabulous treasure: this is the best introduction for the castello di Favara, new stage of the tour to discover the castles of Sicily.

 

The history

  • Built in the late Thirteenth century by Chiaramonte family, the castle is the “point of passage” from the type of the castle to the type of the building (in fact, it is known as “palace”).
  • In the Seventeenth century, the castle of Favara was used as a stately home.
  • From the early Eighteenth century, the kitchens at the two sides of the large portal were used as prisons: to be precise, the rooms on the left as a criminal prison and the rooms on the right as a civil prison.
  • In the Seventies of the Twentieth century, part of the stone fence was removed.

 

The castle

The disposition of the parts of the castle has the shape of a square: this characteristic is typical of Sicilian Swabian castles, particularly of the “palacia” (or “solacia”) built by King Frederick II of Swabia. Since it is located in a slightly elevated position, it was used almost exclusively as a residence.

  • The facade can be divided into two parts: the first is compact, the second pierced by mullioned windows.
  • The ground floor rooms have vaulted ceilings.
  • There is a commemorative plaque in the entrance hall: on that plaque, there is an indecipherable inscription that, according to a popular legend, indicates the location of a fabulous treasure.
  • The chapel and the portal are the two most characteristic elements of the castle: in particular, the columns at the sides of the portal are typically Norman style.

 

How to get there

Favara is a small town in the province of Agrigento. To get there from Agrigento, just take the county road 80 and follow the road sogns Favara. The journey by car takes about 20 minutes.

 

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Image source: Di Favara Piazza Cavour Castello Chiaramonte.jpg: Turturizaderivative work: Memorato (talk) – Favara Piazza Cavour Castello Chiaramonte.jpg, CC BY-SA 3.0