Benevento, city of the witches

Benevento: between history and legend. Discovering the beautiful city of Campania.

Versione in italiano

Benevento is an elegant provincial town, nestled sly overlooking a valley, surrounded by the Apennine hills, one of which takes on the appearance of a sweet female figure, in a reclining position, known as the “Sleeper”.

The City of Witches

Benevento is also known as the “City of  Witches“. The legend, born during the Lombard domination, enriched with more and different details. It seems that, just outside the city walls, the Lombard warriors, devoted to the god Wothan, they used to meet around a walnut tree on which hung a goatskin which then tore to shreds, turning around. Locals watched with terror their demonic ritual. As time passes these magic rites were attributed to evil women who gathered around the walnut tree in an orgy of banquets, dances and songs. Even today the myth of the witch lives in a good local alcoholic beverage, that takes its name and icon.

Between art and history

Benevento is not just ancient superstition and popular beliefs; the city lives a past rich in art and history: its monuments are the testimony of the Roman, Pontifical and Lombard domains succeeded over the centuries. Walking through the old town, very nice, we admire in particular:

  • Trajan’s Arch, the symbol of the capital, built in honor of the Emperor Trajan at the inauguration of the Appian Way, is a well-preserved evidence of Roman civilization, as well as the Roman Theatre;
Benevento - Arco di Traiano
Benevento – Arco di Traiano
  • the Church of St. Sophia, listed among the UNESCO World Heritage List, one of the most important Lombard monuments on the Italian peninsula;
Benevento - Santa Sofía
Benevento – Santa Sofía
  • the Fortress of Rectors, architectural evidence of the Pontifical period, majestic castle built on a former Lombard site.
Benevento - Rocca dei Rettori
Benevento – Rocca dei Rettori

Benevento definitely worth a visit to learn about a reality full of history and charm; a destination outside the usual routes but certainly able to surprise the visitor.

macchina fotograficaSome photos to inspire you to visit Benevento


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