Torano Nuovo

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HISTORY of Torano Nuovo

Torano is a borgo of 1561 inhabitants located on a hill at 240 m above sea level, overlooking the Vibrata Spring. The town’s name originates from the ancient god Turan, goddess of fertility. The addition Nuovo (new in English) was added by Vittorio Emanuele II king of Italy in 1864 to distinguish the town from another one named Torano Castello in the Calabria Region.

The Vibrata Valley has been inhabited since before the Roman conquest. Once the empire fell, the incursions of the Barbarians made the valley squalid and life precarious. The valley was invaded by the Visigoths, the Goths, the Lombards, the Dukes of Spoleto, and the Franks of Charlemagne. In the 10th century, the raids of the Huns forced the population to abandon the villas and settle on the hills.

Torano was fortified between the 9th and 10th centuries. It was officially known as Castello Oppidum Turani.

Night view of Torano Nuovo

Torano was a castle on the border between the Vatican State and the Napoli Reign. Unfortunately, almost nothing is left of the fortified walls.

In the first half of the XII century, the Normans conquered the valley. After the Normans and the Svevi, the Angioini followed (1273-1400 A.D.) with Carlo d’ Angiò.

Around 1440 A.D. the Angevin domination ceased and the Aragonese domination began with king Alfonso I, who invested the captain Oddone Sgariglia of Ascoli in the fief of Casanova in the “ Tenimento di Torano”.

In 1496 A.D., during the so-called “plaster war”, Torano was razed to the ground, but thanks to the diligence and cleverness of its inhabitants it was quickly rebuilt.

In 1568 A.D. the feudal lord Girolamo Acquaviva sold Torano to Ferrante Capece.

In the 17th century, the Mother Church of the Madonna Delle Grazie was also built.

It will remain under the territory of the Dukes of Acquaviva until 1760 A.D. when it will be incorporated into the properties of the kingdom of Naples.

Vincenzo Comi was born in Torano in 1746 A.D. He was a distinguished naturalist and chemist.

On March 17, 1861, Torano also became part of a politically united and independent Italy.

In 1921 the “peasant painter” Alberto Di Feliciantonio was born in Torano Nuovo. He’s one of the most important artists which ever lived in the area. His private paintings collection can be visited by appointment. We would suggest visiting his website https://www.albertodifeliciantonio.it/en/index.html

Torano is known today, for the vineyards and for the production of wine, famous since ancient times, so much so that, according to Plinio, Hannibal, a veteran of the battle of Trasimeno, used it to treat his horses sick with scabies. The production of wine (Montepulciano D.O.C., Trebbiano D.O.C., Controguerra D.O.C, and Colline Teramane D.O.C.G.) is so important that Torano Nuovo has been called “Capital of Montepulciano d’Abruzzo“.

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What to see:

– Church madre della Madonna delle Grazie

Built-in the seventeenth century. Today, after various extensions and renovations, it has a neoclassical facade with two columns and pillars with volute capitals. Internally it is enriched by baroque-style friezes, with a beautiful vault frescoed by the Teramo painter G. Canzanese and his wife from Turin,  Eugenia Nardinocchi. It also houses a niche containing the statue of the Madonna Delle Grazie, carried every year on 2 July in procession through the streets of the historic center.

-Museum of Sacred Art

You can admire a precious silver processional cross of the fifteenth century, virtuous monstrance and chalices of Neapolitan manufacture from the eighteenth century, and a reliquary of San Flaviano, patron saint of the village.

War Memorial

Like many other towns, Torano was massively hit by the I and II World War, many citizens lost their lives defending the freedom of their country.

The Memorial has been built in white marble and it’s located right in front of Madonna Delle Grazie Church at the back of a stunning view of the Apennines.

They shall never be forgotten!!!

War Memorial

La Sagra del Gusto

This is not just an event, this is the event!!! A symbol for the locals, a week not to be missed for the tourists!!

The festival of Wine, Sausages, Maccheroni, and Fried Cheese. Torano is well known locally for its food and wine. Thousands of people every year attend this event to taste the fantastic tasteful dishes and the wines locally produced which are sold along the streets of the historic city center.

Crowd enjoying the night during the Sagra
(Pictures kindly provided by Biagio Cimini)

Unknonwplaces would like to say a massive thank you to Biagio Cimini for his cooperation during the writing of this post!

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