Archdiocese of Santa Severina

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The archdiocese of Santa Severina was a Roman Catholic ecclesiastical territory in Calabria, southern Italy, that existed until 1986. In that year it was united into the diocese of Crotone, forming the Archdiocese of Crotone-Santa Severina.[1]


Santa Severina, built on a rocky precipice on the site of the ancient Siberena, became an important fortress of the Byzantines in their struggles with the Saracens. It is not known whether it was an episcopal see from the beginning of the Byzantine domination; When it became an archbishopric, probably in the tenth century, its suffragan sees were the diocese of Orea, the diocese of Acerenza, the diocese of Gallipoli, the diocese of Alessano and the diocese of Castro.

The Greek Rite disappeared from the diocese under the Normans, but was retained in the cathedral during a great part of the thirteenth century. The earliest known bishop was one Giovanni, but his date is uncertain. From 1096, when the name of Bishop Stefano is recorded, the list of prelates is uninterrupted. Among them were:

  • Ugo (1269), formerly prior of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem;
  • Jacopo (1400), who died in repute of sanctity;
  • Alessandro della Marra (1488), who restored the episcopal palace and the cathedral;
  • Giovanni Matteo Sertori, present at the Fifth Lateran Council;
  • Giulio Sertori (1535), legate to Ferrara under Charles V of Spain and Philip II;
  • Giulio Antonio Santorio (1566), later a cardinal;
  • Fausto Caffarello (1624);
  • Gian Antonio Parravicini (1654), as parish priest of Sondrio in Valtellina zealous against heretics;
  • Francesco Falabello (1660), who suffered in defense of church rights;
  • Carlo Berlingeri (1678);
  • Nicolo Carmini Falco (1743), editor of the history of Dio Cassius.

In 1818 the territories of the suppressed diocese of Belcastro and diocese of San Leone were united to Santa Severina. Belcastro, considered by some authorities to be the ancient Chonia, had bishops from 1122; noted was Jacopo di Giacomelli (1542), present at the Council of Trent. Bishops of San Leone are known from 1322 till 1571, when the diocese was united to that of Santa Severina. Other suppressions in that year, united to Santa Severina, were the diocese of Cerenzia, diocese of Isola, diocese of Strongoli, Diocese of Umbriatico.[1] Another later holder was Carmelo Pujia from 1905 to 1925.

The archdiocese became reduced to one suffragan see, the diocese of Cariati.[2]


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  • CAPPELLETTI, Le chiese d'Italia, XXI (Venice, 1857).