Rotella, Province of Ascoli Piceno, Marche
Rotella rises on a peculiar round terrace, and the name possibly derives from its wheel-like (in Latin rota) form, between the Tesino river and its tributary Oste, at the foot of the Ascensione Mountain, which was originally called Monte Nero for its thick forests.
- Altitude: 395 m a.s.l
- Population: about 1000 inhabitants
- Zip/postal code: 63030
- Dialing Area Code: +39 0736
- Patron Saint: St. Lorenzo, celebrated on 10th August
- Frazioni & Localities: Capradosso, Castel di Croce, Croce Nera, Osteria, Poggio Canoso, San Francesco
- GPS Coordinates: 42°57'N 13°34'E
- Useful Links: a map of Rotella
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The area was possibly inhabited in pre-Roman times and in the 10th century it was a Benedictine fortress, and in 1356 is still mentioned as a possession of the Farfa Abbey. The smaller hamlets included in its jurisdiction, among them Capradosso, Castel di Croce and Poggio Canoso, were all castles erected as a defense line for Ascoli and as such were independent communes until 1860. In 1775 a ruinous flood of the Oste stream caused a landslide that destroyed part of the historical center.
What to see
- The ruins of the Rocca di Rovetino, on the hill called Colle della Torre amid a rich forest situated in the right valley of the Aso river.
- The Clock Tower, the only extant part of the old historical center destroyed in 1773.
- The sanctuary of Montemisio dedicated to the Madonna della Consolazione, rising on the spot of an early Benedictine settlement, near a huge oak tree possibly 4 or 5 centuries old; the name may derive by the presence in antiquity of a temple dedicated to the goddess Artemisia (Artemis). It is a place of worship for the local population, connected to a drought of the year 1816, when the inhabitants of Capradosso walked barefoot to Montemisio praying the virgin for rain; on the way back, it actually began to rain, and to give thanks on the 15th of August every year a procession to the sancuary is repeated.