Rotella, Province of Ascoli Piceno, Marche region, Italy
Rotella rises on a peculiar round terrace, and the name possibly derives from its wheel-like (in Latin rota) form, between the Tesino river and its tributary Oste, at the foot of the Ascensione Mountain, which was originally called Monte Nero for its thick forests.
Altitude: 395 m a.s.l -- Population: ca. 1000 inhabitants -- Zip/postal code: 63030 -- Phone Area Code: 0736 -- Patron Saint: San Lorenzo celebrated on 10th August -- "Frazioni" & Localities: Capradosso, Castel di Croce, Croce Nera, Osteria, Poggio Canoso, San Francesco -- GPS Coordinates: 42°57'N 13°34'E -- Useful links: a map of Rotella
What to see
- the ruins of the Rocca di Rovetino, on the hill called Colle della Torre amid a rich forest situated in the right valley of the Aso river.
- the Clock Tower, the only extant part of the old historical center destroyed in 1773.
- the Sanctuary of Montemisio dedicated to the Madonna della Consolazione, rising on the spot of an early Benedictine settlement, near a huge oak tree possibly 4 or 5 centuries old; the name may derive by the presence in antiquity of a temple dedicated to the goddess Artemisia (Artemis). It is a place of worship for the local population, connected to a drought of the year 1816, when the inhabitants of Capradosso walked barefoot to Montemisio praying the virgin for rain; on the way back, it actually began to rain, and to give thanks on the 15th of August every year a procession to the sancuary is repeated.
Where to stay
The area was possibly inhabited in pre-Roman times and in the 10th century it was a Benedictine fortress, and in 1356 is still mentioned as a possession of the Farfa Abbey. The smaller hamlets included in its jurisdiction, among them Capradosso, Castel di Croce and Poggio Canoso, were all castles erected as a defense line for Ascoli and as such were independent communes until 1860. In 1775 a ruinous flood of the Oste stream caused a landslide that destroyed part of the historical center.
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