Sora, Province of Frosinone, Lazio

One the major centres in the province of Frosinone, Sora lies along the river Liri, at the junction of the three valleys Liri, Roveto and Comino. The river is a great resource for hydroelectric plants. Today Sora is a flourishing industrial, farming and commercial center, especially remarkable in the field of wood furniture.


  • Altitude: 300 m a.s.l
  • Population: about 26,500 inhabitants (in 2010)
  • Zip/postal code: 03039
  • Dialing Area Code: +39 0776
  • Patron Saint: Santa Restituta, celebrated on May 27
  • Demonym: sorani
  • Frazioni & Localities: Agnone, Ara Frocella, Baffetta I, Baffetta II, Campopiano, Carnello, Case Amanti, Case di Riccio, Case Ontola, Ciavarra, Cocorbito, Colle d'Arte, Folgara, Iamanti, Incoronata, L'Annunziata, Le Compre, Madonna della Pace, Mezzano, Pescura I, Pescura II, Petrella, Petrone I, Petrone II, Pietrangela, Ponte Marmone, Ponte Olmo, Ruscitto, San Domenico, San Giorgio, San Marciano, Sant'Elia, San Vincenzo Ferreri, Selva Alta, Sura, Tofaro, Tranna, Val Comperta, Valfrancesca, Vercolane.


In ancient times the town was the scene of fighting between the Romans and the Samnites until in the end was conquered by Rome. With the appearance of Christianity, Sora became a bishopry. Sacked by the Saracens during the X century and then by the Normans at the beginning of the 13th century, it was given to the church by Frederick II, who later in 1229 sacked it destroying also the Church of Santa Restituta, though later he repented and in his will ordered the church to be rebuilt.

Sora was declared a royal city by the king of Naples, Charles I Anjou in the 14th century; in the following centuries its lords were the Tomaselli, Cantelmi, Della Rovere and Boncompagni families. In 1798 Sora was a center of resistance against the French, under the leadership of brigands as Gaetano Mammone and Michele Pezza, called "Fra’ Diavolo".

The town was greatly damaged by the 1915 earthquake. Sora was also the birthplace or film director Vittorio De Sica (Sora 7th July 1901- Neuilly France 1974).

What to see

  • Among the most important monuments is the cathedral of Santa Restituta, for whom there is a special worship. A folk-legend says that in the early Christian era, under emperor Aurelianus, young Maria Restituta arrived in Sora from Rome with Cirillus and two other followers, to evangelize the population but she was killed by order of proconsul Agatius along the banks of the Fibreno river, near the area called Carnello, where the stone on which she was beheaded can still be seen. The cathedral rose in the 11th century on the ruins of a temple dedicated to the Sun, dating back to the 3rd century BC. On the spot the executioners of the saint, converted to Christianity, also suffered martyrdom. In the following centuries the ceiling in gilded engraved wood was added, and beautiful paintings such as "Santa Caterina, San Bernardo e San Domenico", in the left nave, probably by Giuseppe Cesari, the oil tryptich "Madonna col Bambino" by Norwegian painter Cristiano Mayer Ross from Bergen, who lived in Sora in the late 19th century.
  • The castle of Sorella, built on the rocky height above the town, was in the Middle Ages a stronghold of importance.
  • On the steep rock above the town (1768 ft) which guards the Liri's valley and the entrance to Abruzzo, are remains of polygonal walls the place probably of the original Volsci settlers.


The district around Sora (the celebrated "Ciociaria") is famous for the costumes of the peasants. The woman's costume is very rich, and each dress is in different colors, except for the white blouse and red cloth behind the long gown, called "ciareca", whose back is sewn to form a kind of honeycomb, under which women wear white pants and a long vest decorated with lace; a large blouse with wide starch-stiffed sleeves, with laces on the chest and wrists. On the ciareca they wear an apron on the front and a red cloth on the back held with a belt. On the shoulders they carry a shawl called "fisciù" fastened with fine brooms. And on the head door the typical cover called "Uammacile" enriched with a jewel, around the neck a black velvet string with a pendant, long earrings and many bracelets.

The man's costume is always the same for everyone: a white shirt with a red and white scarf around the neck, a red waistcoat adorned with small pins, black trousers long to the knees with side buttons and a red ribbon around the waist. On the head a black hat with red ribbon and on the feet the typical "ciocie", footwear in leather formed of a sole with long strings along the calf and tied just under the knee.

The Cuisine

The cooking traditions of the area have roots in the ancient pastoral society. Among the most typical dishes are tagliatelle with tomato sauce, meat and chili pepper; the "tagliolini in bianco" with beans ("sagne e faciure") served in a "scifa" (a wooden plate), the tasty vegetable soups and to the polenta ("brebba"). Among the second courses grilled lamb or salsicce, trout of the Liri and Fibreno; beans cooked in a terracotta pot; the "tanni" (a local vegetable) fried with chili pepper and garlic. And finally the desserts: the "pigna" with sultanas and anise; the "cecamarine" (fried cookies), the "cecerchiata" (small dough balls fried and then formed together as a big cake with honey), the "susamieglie" (cookies with flour, honey, orange peel, almonds and hazelnuts). And along with the good local wines there is a special traditional liquor called visciole.

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