Acerenza, Province of Potenza, Basilicata
Provinces of Basilicata
- Altitude: 833 m a.s.l
- Population: about 3000 inhabitants
- Zip/postal code: 85011
- Dialing Area Code: +39 0971
It was founded by the ancient inhabitants of the territory, the Osci, who called it Akere, later changed into Acheruntia. It was a Roman municipium and praefectura, a gastaldat under the Lombards and an important castle throughout the Middle Ages, and from 1059 to 1977 was the Bishopry seat for Basilicata and for centuries also hosted a Seminar. Its diocesis was founded according to some sources by the Saint Peter himself.
What to see
- The 12th century Romanesque-Gothic Cathedral of Santa Maria and San Canio - whose body was found among the ruins of the ancient Cristian church in 1080 -, among the most beautiful in the region, has an Apulian-Gothic portal with small marble columns, surrounded by sculptures with grotesque motifs. Inside is the 16th-century Ferrillo Chapel, all covered in frescoes. Its importance for the whole region explains also its grandeur: 69 m long, 23 wide with 5 massive pillars on each side dividing the interior into three naves, a choir, and chapels all around the main apse. It was built on an early Christian church, which in its turn rose on a pagan temple to Hercules Acheruntinus.