Aragonese Castle of Ortona (Italy)
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The Aragonese Castle of Ortona is a suggestive structure dating back to the fifteenth century, perched on the promontory overlooking the sea "La Pizzuta", which dominates the beautiful town of Ortona a Mare, in the province of Chieti.
The construction is one of the most important examples, present in the area, of the transformation of a medieval fortification into a "elevated" Renaissance, today perfectly visible in all its magnificence thanks to an important work of consolidation and restoration.
The visual glimpse that offers the Castle allows you to embrace with a gaze a long stretch of "Costa dei Trabocchi", with its natural coves and the ancient fishing palafitte, still in activity, which underpin one of the most fascinating traits of the Middle - Lower Adriatic.
The construction of the fortress as we know it today dates back to the period from 1450 to 1470 and is based on previous edifications of medieval origin. The previous structure was probably wanted by the condottiere Giacomo Caldora, who built the imposing walls to protect Ortona from the attacks of the Aragonese, but they managed to conquer the city in 1452.
The plan of the palace, quadrangular in full Renaissance style, was therefore desired by Alfonso of Aragon, who decided to rebuild the fortification overlooking the sea, to protect the port of the city.
The city passed into the hands of Margherita D'Austria in 1582, who bought Ortona for 54,000 ducats, with the intention of making it a modern and economically prosperous settlement. The construction action of the new ruler concentrated mostly on the inhabited nucleus and left the Aragonese stronghold almost intact.
In the following centuries the village was managed by local authorities with little farsightedness, which triggered a long process of decadence. The local port was moved to the south and the fort lost its protective function, sliding towards the decline to the point that, in 1779, the Napoleonic troops crossed it without any difficulty to invade the entire area.
During the twentieth century the manor was significantly damaged by the bombings of 1943 and a landslide in 1946.