|Comune di Sarno|
The St. Michael Cathedral
|• Mayor||Amilcare Mancusi|
|• Total||39 km2 (15 sq mi)|
|Elevation||30 m (100 ft)|
|Population (30 June 2011)|
|• Density||810/km2 (2,100/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|Patron saint||St. Michael|
|Saint day||May 8|
The area of Sarno was inhabited since Neolithic times, and in pre-historical times housed Oscan and Samnites settlements. Later it was acquired by the Romans, who held it until the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD. The first nucleus of the future Sarno grew in the 8th century around a castle founded by the Lombards of Benevento.
On May 5, 1998 Sarno and the neighbouring villages of Quindici, Siano and Bracigliano were devastated by a series of landslides. 180 houses were destroyed, 450 severely damaged, and 161 people died in what was one of the biggest catastrophes of its kind in modern Italy. The landslides had been caused by several days of torrential rainfalls, but were also blamed on agricultural, residential and industrial overexploitation and the lack of any substantial environmental programs. The catastrophe prompted the Italian Ministry of the Environment to introduce a couple of legislative measures for environmental protection which have come to be known as legge Sarno.
Sarno has the ruins of a medieval castle, which belonged to Count Francesco Coppola, who took an important part in the conspiracy of the barons against Ferdinand II of Aragon in 1485.
Walter III of Brienne is buried in the ancient church of Santa Maria della Foce, rebuilt in 1701.
- Population data from Istat
Media related to Sarno at Wikimedia Commons