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Città di Rende
Via Rossini, the city center of Rende.
Via Rossini, the city center of Rende.
Coat of arms of Rende
Coat of arms
Rende within the Province of Cosenza
Rende within the Province of Cosenza
Location of Rende
Rende is located in Italy
Location of Rende in Italy
Rende is located in Calabria
Rende (Calabria)
Coordinates: 39°20′N 16°11′E / 39.333°N 16.183°E / 39.333; 16.183Coordinates: 39°20′N 16°11′E / 39.333°N 16.183°E / 39.333; 16.183
ProvinceCosenza (CS)
FrazioniArcavacata, Commenda, Quattromiglia, Roges, Santo Stefano, Saporito, Surdo
 • MayorMarcello Manna (Lista Civica)
 • Total55.28 km2 (21.34 sq mi)
480 m (1,570 ft)
 • Total35,727
 • Density650/km2 (1,700/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
Dialing code0984
Patron saintImmaculate Conception
Saint dayFebruary 20
WebsiteOfficial website

Rende is a town and comune in Calabria, southern Italy, home to the headquarters of the University of Calabria. It has a population of about 35,000, or more than 60,000 if the university students living there are taken into account. It is divided in two parts: the old town, which is stands on a high hill, and the modern area, on level ground, which is part of the urban area of Cosenza and is the centre of the city's economy.


The ancient Enotrii, coming from the plain of Sant'Eufemia and Clampetia (Amantea), founded near the river which they called Acheronte the early Acheruntia and subsequently Pandosia. The florid area was unfit to defend during conflict, so some Acheruntini left the area to take refuge in a more defensible site: today's Nogiano. This new settlement, which dates from 520 BC, was named Aruntia ("the houses of the strong") and then Arintha. Hecataeus of Miletus, who lived in 500 BC, cites Arintha as the City of Bretia of Enotra origin. During Roman domination, Arintha was a Municipio, but when Spartacus with his army passed through the valley of the Crati, many Acheruntini followed him. With the arrival of the barbarians close to Cosentia the Acheruntini offered a brave and staunch resistance, but despite their efforts all areas of Arintha fell into the hands of barbarians in 547 AD. In later centuries, as well as many common Calabrian, Arintha subdued the Byzantine and Muslim rulers; Muslims countered by Acheruntini that in 721 AD took part in the struggle for the liberation of the territory of Naples. The Saracens' reaction was tough and the Cities of Arintha, Bisignano, Montalto and Cosenza suffered retaliation by the Muslims, but in 921 AD an important battle was won and the valley of Crati was freed by Muslim oppression. Saracens returned more than before and forced the rebels to take refuge in Sila; they could return to their lands only with the coming of the Normans in 1059. Arintha was under the direct control of the Normans, particularly Robert Guiscard, which imposed on the City payment of tributes and the presence of a "Lord", the archbishop of Cosenza. But in 1091 the entire district of Cosenza rebelled for the taxes too high. Roger Borsa, the son of Robert Guiscard and designated heir, succeeded his father in the management of the territory. He asked the involvement of Roger I, his uncle, and Bohemond, his brother, who repressed the rebellion by force. Bohemond obtained the control of the county of Cosenza.[3] Bohemond d’Hauteville decided to build a castle on the solitary hill between streams Surdo and Emoli, which dominates valley of the Crati. The massive structure was finished in 1095 with the help of Mirandi Artifices.[4] In this period, for the first time appears in official documents the name Renne, it means Kingdom[5] in the old French language (idiom of the Normans in Southern Italy in that period).[6]

Norman castle today

The castle of Rende become the base for Bohemond before he left for the Crusade in 1096. Joining him in the xperdition was a knight, Pietro Migliarese from Rende, who brought with him four soldiers and eight attendants; later on also the Mirandi Artifices[4] already engaged in the construction of the castle. Bohemond returned to Rende in 1106 and again in 1111 before his death. The earthquake of 1184 was very strong and damaged the castle and several churches, Rende experienced a period of recession. Since 1189 we witnessed in the kingdom of Sicily to a struggle for succession to William the Good, but in 1194 Henry VI, husband of Constance d’Hauteville (heir designated by William) came with his Forces in the kingdom of Sicily, reclaiming the crown. Passing in these lands Henry VI alleged payment of huge taxes that people would never have been able to honour. In defence of them intervened Gioacchino da Fiore, Constance’s confessor, because he knew the people there, spent almost a year in the Rende mountains before becoming Abbot of Corazzo. After the death of Henry VI occurred shortly after, Rende lived a florid period, thanks to the protection of Constance. During Swabian period, Frederick II confirmed the membership of Rende‘s lands to the Archbishop of Cosenza. When the King came to Cosenza for the inauguration of the cathedral in 1222 the citizens of Rende were present with their banner that portrayed the three towers of the castle on a white and red background, the colours of the coat of arms of Bohemond d’Hauteville.[6]

After the death of Frederick, witnessed the dispute about his succession, which ended in 1266 with the battle of Benevento, where Charles of Anjou won against Manfred; in the public areas of the castle there is still a visible reminiscent of an incision about the presence of a thousand people from Rende deployed against Manfred.[6]

During Angevin period, Rende was entrusted to Archbishop-Count of Cosenza. After various events, in 1319 AD we found the presence of family Migliarese from Rende to serve the House of Anjou. Giovanni Migliarese was knighted during the reign of King Robert of Anjou and Godefrido Migliarese was invested of the feud of Malvito. In 1437 Rende, like Calabria, came under the Aragon dominion and was given to the Adorno Family of Genoa in 1442.[6]

With the advent of Charles V the feud came under the control of Fernando de Alarcón, Governor of Cosenza. In 1531 Rende was elevated from a feud to a Marquisate. In 1535 Fernando de Alarcón drove the warriors of Rende, boarding in Naples with the King Charles V, in the battle of Tunis against Mors. Alarcón de Mendoza Family dominated Rende until 1817. During this period the people of Rende were alongside Philip II (son of Charles V) and Ferdinand of Alarcón in 1565 under the command of Gian Domenico Migliarese in Malta battle against the Turks and in 1571 at the Battle of Lepanto led by Diego de Guiera. In 1794 the ideas of the French Revolution reached Rende. The harassment, taxes and the inequities increased the hate towards the Bourbon domain. Spokesman of this grumpiness was Domenico Vanni who received Joachim Murat, Marshal of Napoleon, when they passed by Cosenza. In 1817 the castle was sold to the Magdalone family, owner of many lands in the Marquisate. During the Resurgence, also Rendesis got tired of the French and Borbonics and many of them became Carbonari participating in the insurrections of 1820-21 and 1831.[6]

In 1860 the enthusiasm for the landing of the Expedition of the Thousand in Marsala helped the people of Rende to organize the "Central Committee of Calabria" to give logistical and military support, as well as supplies, to Giuseppe Garibaldi. With his troops, Garibaldi was camped in the Marchesino area. On 24 August 1860 Rende rebelled against the Bourbons and hailed Victor Emmanuel II, King of Italy.[6]


Dionysius of Halicarnassus said that Lycaon (king of Arcadia and son of Pelasgus) and the nymph Melibea, around the 8th century BC, divided his kingdom among his many children, but two of them, Oenotrus and Peucezius, were not satisfied with the part given to them and decided to leave Arcadia to find new lands where to live. With them were also many other Greeks and their sister Arintha, who was of unparalleled beauty. Near the Italian coast, Peucezio landed in Apulia, colonizing the current provinces of Bari and Taranto, which took the name of Peucezia; Enotro, with the main part of the expedition, continued to sail toward the Tyrrhenian Sea. Once on land and having visited many places he decided to settle in the area that is today called "Guardiula". The new settlement was called Acheruntia and later Arintha in memory of the splendid sister who unfortunately die in that place.


Topographic map of Rende

Rende stretches from the left river of the Crati to the mountains called "Serre Cosentine".

The municipality counts the hamlets (frazioni) of Arcavacata, Commenda, Quattromiglia, Roges, Santo Stefano, Saporito and Surdo.

The territory presents mountain areas from west that degrade slowly eastward forming hills, one of which is the historic centre, until to the valley of the Crati. Thanks to large flat areas, it is covered by the modern city. The most important rivers crossing Rende are Crati, Campagnano, Surdo and Emoli.

Main sights[edit]

The Norman Castle[edit]

The Castle in 1911

The castle was built at the site in 1095 by Bohemond d'Hauteville, that elected it as their base before leaving for the first crusade in August 1096. The realization of the manor in Rende was the beginning of a larger project suggested years earlier by Robert Guiscard, Bohemond father, to build a defensive line in the valley of the Crati with fortresses in Bisignano, Montalto Uffugo, Rende and Cosenza. The peculiar morphology of the hill where was erected the "Giant of Stone" guaranteed an extremely easy posting to defend, and the steep slopes, which stand out upwards to form a wedge, saved such security that was believed unnecessary the creation of ditch and drawbridge. The castle was instead provided with small windows and many loopholes, which could be used bows and crossbows; also was built in the courtyard outside a huge cistern to collect rainwater that guaranteed a safe supply during sieges. Impassable walls (the base was more than two metres) guaranteed the protection of homes, churches, and other defensive structures, in particular the castle with the central tower and two other towers, placed on the sides. The three towers are the emblem of the town, probably their first appearance as a banner municipal was in 1222 for the inauguration of the cathedral of Cosenza in the presence of Frederick II. Still in public areas of the castle, you can admire two coats of arms belonging to two families in successive ownership of the castle: Magdalone (on the left side) and Alarcón de Mendoza(on the right side). At the top, in front, there is the municipal coat, the inscriction below it says: Urbs celebris quondam sedes regalis Arintha (Famous city - ancient royal[5] place - Arintha)


Church Place Holyday
Saint Mary Major Old Town
Sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Constantinople Old Town Seventh Tuesday after Easter
Church of the 'Ritiro'[8] Old Town
Church of the Rosary Old Town First Sunday in October
St. Francis of Assisi Old Town
St. Charles Borromeo New Town
Our Lady of Lourdes New Town February 11
St. Anthony of Padua Commenda June 13
St. Paul the Apostle San Gennaro[9] June 29
Our Lady of the Consolation Arcavacata Easter Monday[10]
St. Francis of Paola Surdo last Sunday of May
Trinity Saporito 56 days before Easter
Our lady of Montserrat Quattromiglia Third Sunday in September
Our lady of the Consolation Santo Stefano Last Sunday in August
Virgin of Mercy Pietà (OT) May 3
Our Lady of the Assumption Old Town August 15
St. Anthony Abbot Old Town January 17
St. Roch Rocchi First Sunday in October
Our Lady of the Snow Santa Maria (OT) August 5
St. John the Baptist Commenda
San Francesco da Paola San Janni[11] June 24
Santa Lucia e St. Hippolytus Old Town December 8 and August 14
Jesus Merciful Santo Stefano June 7
St. Augustine Sant'Agostino
St. John Old Town

The church matrix is at the end of course that connects directly to the castle and was built in the 12th century. The church has a Latin cross plan with 3 aisles, above the main door there is a rosette of the same age. The earthquakes and the usury of time have forced the renovators to cover the old columns with rectangular pillars but does not affect the beauty. Upon are visible, carved in stone, 2 friezes: an open book, to the right; two keys crossed, to the left. Inside the Church there are works of art, including paintings by Cristoforo Santanna, Giuseppe Pascaletti and Giuseppe Grana; wood sculptures and marble sculptures too.[12]

  • Sanctuary of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Constantinople

The Church in the center of Rende was built around 1600 but it currently shows dating back to 1719. The exterior, it shows a facade with a hut. At the top is a great colored glass window depicting the Virgin of Constantinople with the Child. On the right side is the sacristy, surmounted by the bell tower. The interior is a Latin cross, and is full of decorations that form a ring around a beautiful altar in a polychrome marbles probably made Neapolitan. At transept of the dome with Madonna in Glory of Constantinople frescoed tempera from Achille Capizzano. Inside the religious place, on the left, is situated a chapel dedicated to the Holy Mary of Constantinople with the statue of the Virgin and an icon painted in oils on copper, commonly called 'Macchietta'.[13] On 15 May 1978, at the decree of Archbishop Archbishop of Cosenza, Enea Selis, the church was raised to the honors of the Shrine. The celebrations use 40 days after Easter, the Tuesday following the Sunday of Pentecost. Very valuable, are the paintings on canvas and painting in the Church are in the choir by Cristoforo Santanna the Allegory of Our Lady of Constantinople dated 1777. The Sanctuary has a museum area where they are exposed vestments used in past centuries to officiate the Mass. The museum also exposed several silverware, as Pissidi, Glasses, Crosses, Ostensori dating back to nearly the 18th century.[12]

  • Church of 'Ritiro'[8]

This church is dedicated to St. Michael the Archangel built in the Norman period. Restored several times, only the portal with the two columns on the sides remains from the original facade. The plan is a Greek cross and on each side there are baroque chapels. Under the four arches that form the dome were raised four statues depicting the Prudence, Fortress, Justice, Temperance. Many paintings, some of them Pascaletti and Santanna, adorn the church. Also inside are preserved even sculptures in wood and marble.[12]

Immediately below the castle, on the square of the Seggio,[14] there is the church of Rosary with eighteenth baroque style. On the front, entirely cut stone, four stand out niches in shell and pleasing decorations that make it one of the most beautiful churches in the area. Inside are stored objects of great value, many of them present in the Inventory of the Art Objects in Italy. During the Christmas days is possible to see the Crib with statuettes of 1700.[12]

The church, with the adjoining convent,[15] was built in 1500. Restored several times, it maintains a baroque aspect. The exterior facade presents a staircase in a semicircle that allows to come into the convent, where there are still some frescoes, sadly very faded. Inside the church are works of Cristoforo Santanna, Francesco De Mura and other valuable paintings by unknown author, and very precious sculptures in wood and marble.[12]

Adjacent to the 'villaggio Europa' is the church dedicated to St. Charles Borromeo, the plant's construction is circular. The large size of the structure makes visible, even from afar, the semispherical particular dome, which reaches 30 meters high. The geometric structure takes the form of a visual effect of great charm. The entrance opened on the facade has a higher portal. Inside, the images of the path of Jesus are very attractive.[12]

Near the 'Robinson park' rises this church recently built. Entirely made of reinforced concrete, with the use of special prefabricated panels, ensuring an excellent thermal and acoustic insulation. The interior is illuminated by a large colored window, placed behind the altar.[12]

The complex houses the church over the convent of Friars Minor. As a modern concept, combining modern architecture, the functionality of Greek theater: the altar is placed at a lower level than the rest of the building in a semicircle. In the high cusp were included 24 windows and vertical cracks placed behind the altar.[12]

The complex, which also houses the Dehonians was recently built in place of an abandoned building. The interior of the church is quite austere, rectangular, lacks decorative elements, apart from the large wooden cross behind the altar and 14 depictions of the Passion of Christ. Outside the building stands a cross-shaped tàu, with a blank heart-shaped at the top, which symbolizes the Sacred Heart of Jesus.[12]

  • Church of Our Lady of the Consolation (loc. Arcavacata)

The single aisle inside is decorated on the sides from some cadres and big doors, which are preserved statues, one of which is that of Our Lady of the Consolation.[12]

This church was built as private chapel of the Zagarese family. Several times restored, inside there is a statue of the Saint and one of the Our Lady of the Rosary.[12]

Church recently, is located on the left side of the river Surdo, near Linze. The facade is rectangular with a small triangle in the upper center and the entrance gate, between two arches that cross, faces a semicircle on the staircase that extends over the square dedicated to Mgr. Trabalzini. Inside there is a wide aisle with semicircular structure.[12]

The church is located close to an older building, but there are only a few remains dedicated to Saint Mary of Montserrat and was once private chapel of the Magdalone family.[12]

  • Church of Our Lady of the Consolation (loc. Santo Stefano)

This church stands on possessions belonged to the Magdalone family. The interior of the church is very simple and without any particular nuances, while the external aspect is very pleasant with a small courtyard outside and a dome composed of twelve file terracotta tiles.[12]

  • Church of the Virgin of Mercy

It rises near the "Guardiula" and is one of the oldest churches, shows a fragment within the year 1117. Restored several times, on the right side there is a tower of modern design.[12]

Marble bas-relief
Miracle of St. James

The small building rises not far from the old church rebuilt several times and destroyed by a landslide. The old chapel were two columns, which still are the pillars of the new, and a marble bas-relief: the miracle of Saint James in Santo Domingo de la Calzada. Very attractive is also a tempera by Donato Magli portraying Our Lady Assumpts in heaven. During the celebrations still perform ancient games, as the race of sacks, the breaking of pignatte attached to a rope suspended in the air and many others.[12]

Small church located not far from the castle. During the celebrations, it is used to distribute to the faithful small pieces of unleavened bread called "chucchjiddru", in the evening of that day, on the square in front of the building, a bonfire is lit with old furniture and wood for the opportunity.[12]

By this small church for a long time was running the monastery of Saints Peter and Paul. The entrance is covered by a small atrium that is newer than the rest of the building, the interior is very simple with some paintings and two small statues.[12]

This small church has kept an oil painting of Our lady of the Snow, by Andrea Carino. An exhibit rock indicates the date of its construction in 1609.[12]

The land on which the church stands as one of the church of St. Anthony Abbot belonged to the Supreme Military Order of Malta. The building was erected from the abbey-commendatory Giuseppe D'Aquino and inside there is a statue of St. John the Baptist.[12]

Immersed in a fresh chestnut holds a sacred relic: a thorn in the crown of Jesus. Inside the building also 2 wooden statues and a picture of the saint.[12]

The building is located not far from where once held the largest fair of the Municipality. The new building is located on a slightly raised ground and is entrusted to the Dehonians.[12]

The building almost be confused with civil houses that are contiguous to it. A few steps away is classic and simple inside where they kept the statues of St. Lucy and St. Hippolytus.[12]

This little building was the first private chapel of the family Spada, once owner of the ridge where the church. Above the altar there is a framework oil depicting the Holy.[12]


Museum of the Present
Old town, view

In Vitari building finds space centre for art and culture dedicated to Achille Capizzano, the exhibitions and conferences about local and international and MAON Museum. While the Museum of Folklore, in the Zagarese palace, made with the advice of R. Lombardi Satriani is essentially dedicated to the territory of Calabria Citeriore that roughly corresponds to the province of Cosenza. The collection of about three thousand items illustrates the culture of these territories. The path to the museum, which is housed in the historic centre, is on nine rooms.

  • Room I: The concept of folklore (summary historic). Ethnic minorities: Italo-Albanesi and Gypsies.
  • Room II: The folk architecture: the house.
  • Room III: The interior lighting systems and sources of heat. Water supply.
  • Room IV: Interiors: cooking and food.
  • Room V: The clothing: murals.
  • Room VI: The domestic activities: spinning, weaving, embroidery. The business: agriculture and pastoralism.
  • Room VII: The handicrafts: jewellery.
  • Room VIII: religious life. Social life. The instruments of popular music.
  • Room IX: Emigration: Calabresi in Canada.
  • The top floor has established a magnificent and interesting gallery entitled to Achille Capizzano works with the same, Mattia Preti, and many other Italian artists.
  • Museum of the present: The Museum of the Present located in the modern city; eight exhibition halls are developed on an area of 2500 square metres. The museum houses exhibitions of modern and contemporary art, photographic exhibitions, cinema, conferences and book presentations.

The rooms are on two levels:

  • Ground floor, the Tokyo hall and an internet cafe;
  • Upstairs, the 'Laboratory of thoughts' and the 'Belvedere of the arts and sciences'.

Other attractions[edit]

Rende has several attractions, including the biggest shopping mall in southern Italy, called Metropolis, and the Robinson Park, the most popular recreational park in the whole urban area of Cosenza. The city has two museums, the Museo Civico di Rende and the Museo del Presente, as well as the Orto Botanico dell'Università della Calabria, a botanical garden.


"Metropolis" shopping mall

The economy of Rende is mostly based on the University of Calabria. In comparison to the rest of southern Italy, Rende has quite a strong economy and is therefore in full expansion. However, industrialization has not been very successful. Although Rende has an adequate industrial area, almost all the main industries have closed down (such as Legno Chimica), despite all the efforts of the local administrations.

Sports and media[edit]

Rende has numerous sports facilities, such as soccer (football) fields, tennis courts and a swimming pool. It is well known for its soccer team Rende Calcio, which competes in the official semi-professional tournament (C2). In 2007 Rende Calcio became one with Cosenza 1914, the new team is Fortitudo Cosenza. So the new official team of the city is 'SS. Rende' in First Category of Amateurs

Rende is home to several newspapers (Gazzetta del Sud, La Provincia Cosentina), and broadcasting companies (TEN-TeleEuropaNetwork and MetroSat) which cover the whole province of Cosenza.


A.Miceli di Serradileo, I conti di Rende in Calabria durante il Regno di Alfonso I e di Ferrante d'Aragona (1422-1494), in "Historica", Reggio Calabria, n.2, 1974;

A.Miceli di Serradileo, San Francesco di Paola ed i miracoli dei pesci resuscitati, in "Rivista Storica Calabrese", Reggio Calabria, 2007;

A.Miceli di Serradileo, Il partito angioino a Cosenza e le sue vicende tra la guerra dei baroni di Ferrante I ed il regno di Carlo V attraverso i documenti dell'Archivio di Stato di Cosenza, in "Archivio Storico per le province napoletane" vol.CXXXI, 2013, pp. 245–259.

  • Fonte, Fedele (1976). Rende nella sua cronistoria (in Italian). Chiaravalle Centrale: Frama Sud.
  • Miceli di Serradileo, Amedeo (2013). Il partito angioino a Cosenza e le sue vicende tra la guerra dei baroni di Ferrante I ed il regno di Carlo V attraverso i documenti dell'Archivio di Stato di Cosenza, in "Archivio Storico per le province napoletane (in Italian). Napoli: Società Napoletana di Storia Patria.
  • Giraldi, Gerardo (1991). Rende: Usanze, tradizioni, costumi (in Italian). Rende: Amministrazione Comunale di Rende.
  • Giraldi, Gerardo (2004). Le chiese di Rende (in Italian). Amministrazione Comunale di Rende. Alternate 1990 2nd edition OCLC 878860087
  • Giraldi, Riccardo (2003). Il popolo cosentino e il suo territorio (in Italian). Cosenza: Pellegrini.
  • Settia, Aldo Angelo (2002). Rapine, assedi, battaglie. La guerra nel medioevo (in Italian). Roma-Bari: Gius. Laterza & Figli S.p.A.

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Superficie di Comuni Province e Regioni italiane al 9 ottobre 2011". Istat. Retrieved 16 March 2019.
  2. ^ "Popolazione Residente al 1° Gennaio 2018". Istat. Retrieved 16 March 2019.
  3. ^ Bohemond was called by Torquato Tasso in the "Jerusalem Delivered" as ‘Count of Cosenza’
  4. ^ a b Military Engineers: indicate all workers (artisans, blacksmiths and carpenters) that were in possession of technical know-how for the construction of castles and war machines
  5. ^ a b Renne=Kingdom on: Hindley, Langley, Levy (2000). Old French - English dictionary. United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link) ISBN 0-521-34564-2
  6. ^ a b c d e f Fonte, Fedele (1976). Rende nella sua cronistoria. Chiaravalle Centrale: Frama Sud.
  7. ^ Giulio, Mezzetti (1979). Geografia - Atlante (in Italian). Firenze: La Nuova Italia Editrice.
  8. ^ a b Retreat, secluded place
  9. ^ Near the junction road for the University of Calabria
  10. ^ The day after Easter is called in Italy 'Lunedì dell'Angelo' (Monday of the Angel)
  11. ^ The stretched form is Sancti Johannis
  12. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x Giraldi, Gerardo (2004). Le chiese di Rende. Rende: Amministrazione comunale di Rende.
  13. ^ Small paint of unknown author
  14. ^ Open space dedicated to the city's government, justice and administration
  15. ^ Former convent of the Franciscan Minor Observant, now it is the Convent of the Poor Clares

External links[edit]