Genzano di Lucania

Pagus Gentianum The lovely small town lies on a gentle and soft hill, on the eastern borders of Puglia region, about six feet above the sea level. The people of “pagus gentianum”, a roman settlement of the VII-VI century B.C., moved to this land because of an epidemic of malaria, giving rise to what is now called Genzano. The primordial inhabited area seems to have been founded on ruins of an old “pagus” of the ancient “Bantia”, probably in the X cent. Likewise Genzano di Lucania, surrounded by corn fields and shrouded by nature, was influenced by the Normans, like all the other villages in the upper Bradano, and the continuous evolution of the feudatory family who ruled it, following such  historical, cultural and artistical changes still alive in the small town. Ancient and modern Today the village is divided in two parts well marked out: the old one with alleys and ancient buildings, placed on a spur, and the new one, built at the top and flat part of the hill, with large streets and modern buildings.     A big castle, Palazzo de Marinis, now a municipal building, divides the old town of Genzano from the new one. To Genzano was added ” di Lucania” to distinguish it from Genzano di Roma. The Cavallina fountain The ancient village of Genzano, characterized by a labyrinth of narrow streets and passes, well recalls the Middle Ages and the absolute importance that it held in that period. Not far away from the Monteserico castle, there is the Cavallina fountain, officially numbered among the 33 most beautiful fountains of Italy, and was object of a 120 liras stamp depiction of the year 1978, behind which is situated a statue of Ceres, solemn watcher of the fountain.  

  This gem of architecture, beauty and functionality, is able to recycle the heavy waters both from the surface and from the substratum, compensating for the unavoidable erosion phenomena of the valley. Once upon a time the fountain had in its centre a statue of Ceres without head, which today is treasured in Palazzo de Marinis, a municipal building, another must-see for people who visit Genzano.

Sources: ANTONIO MASSARO – 6 April 2010