Il castello

The "Montagnola" of Marineo is located to the north-west of the modern town. On the hill has been identified, thanks to the discovery of tiles inscribed in Greek characters, the indigenous city of Makella, known through historical and epigraphic sources, including the so called "V Decree of Entella".
In late Archaic times the walls were built to defend the settlement, which certainly ran along the SE slope, the only accessible one, which was reinforced during the early Hellenistic period, destroyed in the middle of the 3rd century B.C. during the First Punic War it was partially reused starting from the Norman period.


During the investigations carried out near the wall curtain that surrounds the town on the south-eastern side, an exceptional votive deposit of the end of the 6th century BC was found, including: two bronze greaves, three helmets, some iron objects interpreted as harnesses for horses or pertaining to supports used to support grates, a small votive shield and a jug with a lid containing the remains of goat-eggs, a bronze pendant shaped like an eye-catcher and an ivory plaque depicting a crouched ram.
The full classical age is little attested archaelogically, while a vigorous recovery is recorded from the middle of the 4th century BC, during the phase of profound Hellenization which affected most of the indigenous sites. At this moment we can date an important building phase that seems to affect the whole center. An architectural complex has been brought to light consisting of a public building of uncertain functional definition and an imposing cistern. The rooms of the building are arranged scenographically on sloping terraces that follow the natural slope of the hill and are connected by two partol staircases, placed at a distance of about 10 meters from each other.


The cistern is elongated, partly built with squared sandstone blocks covered with plaster, and partly excavated in the natural rocky bank, covered by a barrel vault, consisting of a series of blocks facing towards the interior. Inside the cistern there is a quadrangular base, on which a portion of a clay pipe that served as a water supply point is inserted.


As for the necropolis, there are several cemetery areas reported through the fortuitous discovery of materials.
La necropoli di età arcaica si colloca, forse, alle falde meridionali del rilievo, mentre quella relativa all’insediamento di fine VI – inizi V sec. a.C. sarebbe da porre ai piedi della Rocca, oggi interamente edificata; nel centro abitato di Marineo, nell’ attuale Via Umberto Maddalena, già denominata Via dei Sepolcreti, è stata segnalata nel passato un’altra area cimiteriale, riferibile, probabilmente, al centro d’età ellenistica.
The Archaeological Museum of the Eleutherium Valley, housed in the sixteenth-century Beccadelli Castle of Marineo, acquired by the Sicilian Region, collects artifacts from the center of Makella. The Museum also exhibits the finds of the entire territorial area, but above all of the different settlements distributed along the Eleuterio River which since ancient times constituted a hydrographic reality of fundamental importance for the connection between the northern Tyrrhenian coast and the hinterland.

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