San Benedetto di Caltabellotta

The important Hellenised indigenous site of contrada San Benedetto di Caltabellotta has yielded numerous traces that indicate that it was a privileged place for human settlement as early as the prehistoric age. Beneath the remains of the Greek settlement dating from the end of the 6th to the beginning of the 5th century B.C., substantial traces of an indigenous village dating from the 8th to the 7th century B.C. have been found. Recent investigations have also brought to light a section of wall with associated material from the Recent Bronze Age.


From the middle of the 6th century B.C., under the expansionist thrust of Selinunte, the centre increasingly acquired a cultural imprint of Greek matrix. After its destruction in the mid-5th century B.C., the city was reborn at the beginning of the 4th century B.C., probably as the phrourion (fortress) Carthaginian, inserted along the line of defence that runs between the Platani and Belice rivers. The centre was finally destroyed at the beginning of the 3rd century B.C., probably following the events of the First Punic War.


The perimeter of the city walls has been partially identified, of which three long sections and two circular towers have been brought to light. A vast and monumental cult area is also known, characterised by sacred buildings built with large square blocks and defined by an imposing portico located along the south side of the plateau, of which the foundation cuts remain.

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