||This article includes a list of references, related reading or external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks inline citations. (March 2013)|
|Comune di Alcamo|
|• Mayor||Sebastiano Bonventre|
|• Total||130 km2 (50 sq mi)|
|Elevation||256 m (840 ft)|
|• Density||350/km2 (920/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|Patron saint||Madonna of the Miracles|
|Saint day||June 21|
Alcamo was founded in 828 by the Muslim commander al-Kamuk (after whom it is named), though other sources date its origin to c. 972. The original Christian settlement, definitively abandoned in the 14th century, was located where remains of a tower and a water reservoir (Funtanazza) can be seen in the neighbourhood.
The first document mentioning Alcamo is from 1154, a document by the Arab geographer Idrisi. Not many years later, ibn Jubayr describes the city as a beleda (town with mosques and a market). In the Middle Ages Alcamo was largely inhabited by Muslim people, whose numbers declined however after the Norman conquest of Sicily, begun in 1060. A series of Arab revolts between 1221 and 1243 led King Frederick II to move much of the Arab population to a colony at Lucera, while Christians from Bonifato came to inhabit the city. In this period was born the famous poet Ciullo or Cielo d'Alcamo.
In the 14th century Alcamo had some 3,000 inhabitants. In the late 16th-century the population was decimated by a pestilence, but gradually recovered, increasing to 13,000 in 1798. Four years later its feudal status was abolished and the city became a direct royal possession. In 1829 an outbreak of cholera again killed much of the population, a misfortune which was repeated in 1918, this time due to the Spanish flu.
In 1860 a revolt broke out and numerous Alcamesi were active in the unification of Italy, supporting and fighting under Garibaldi's expedition to southern Italy. The Allied troops entered Alcamo without opposition on July 21, 1943, freeing the city from Fascist and German forces.
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- The Castle of the Counts of Modica (14th century). It has a rhomboidal plan, with four towers; two are quadrangular, two are cylindrical. In the northern part a mullioned window in Gothic style can be seen.
- The Castle Calatubo, built before 1093. It stands on a limestone rock and dominate with its height the surrounding area.
- Cathedral (18th century) has works of art by Giacomo Gagini and Giacomo Serpotta, as well as frescos by Guglielmo Borremans.
The surrounding areas include interesting tourist and historical locations like Segesta and Gibellina. The old fishing village of Scopello, 20 kilometres (12 mi) from Alcamo, has been referred to as having a remarkable seaside. Another village considered worth visiting is Castellammare del Golfo which is between these two places.
Castle Calatubo by night
- Alcamo - Official website (Italian)
- Notizie storiche, foto di Alcamo, informazioni, curiosità, etc.
- Financial Club - Associazione Culturale per la promozione della cultura d'impresa
- Alcamo Information
- Al centro delle colline Alcamo D.o.c.