located at the top of a rocky peak and according to the writer Macdonnel its
houses look like an eagle’s nest. The village was settled by the owners of five
villas. Father Paolo Finocchi wrote that the first villa was situated in the
“Santa Maria” valley along with the “Santa Maria in Salicta” church; the second
one was located in “Fonte Cinno” as well as the “Santa Lucia” church; the third
one was set in the “Domnica” valley along with the “San Cesidio” church; the
fourth one lied in the “Pagliara” valley together with the “San Rocco” church;
the last one was the “Valva” castle, built on a mountain called “Castellaccio”
and supported by “Corfinia”.
mentioned “San Cesidio” church belonged to Monteccassino and was assigned to
the abbot “Aligerino” in order to restore the monastery burnt down by the
The owners of
the five villas joined together on the current site of Castrovalva and the
studies made by Antonio De Nino have confirmed the presence of these old houses
in the quarters named by Father Paolo Finocchi.
year 1000 they belonged to the “San Vincenzo al Volturno” monastery.
in the statute of the castles, Frederick II, Duke of Swabia, made Castrovalva a
centre for controlling most of our territory.
The Angevins later confirmed the statute.
When it comes
to the number of its inhabitants, it is known that in the year 1173 Castro was
populated by 48 families and had around 200 inhabitants; in 1447 the village
counted 78 residents; in 1595 the total population was 225.
By the time of
the first census in 1640 the population was estimated to be 252, in 1669 had grown to 315, in the year 1732 had
fallen to 310. It had risen to 404
Castro was a stronghold, belonging to the “Di Sangro” family and then was sold
to the doctor Annibale Paschale of Bugnara.
Since the early 1600’s the
strongholds became a trade centre and the village was given to many barons such
as the “Di Salvo” family
of Scanno, the “Marchesano” family, the “De Rosa” family of Napoli and then to
Giovan Battista Roberti of Lucera, treasurer in Chieti, who made Castro a marquisate.
In the end, Castro was assigned to the “Pomarici” family of Matera who kept the title
of Marquis in Castrovalva.
Today in winter the village counts 30 inhabitants
and falls under the jurisdiction of Anversa
descendants of the old inhabitants started restoring old houses, stables and
cellars in order to make the village more welcoming and offer tourists the
chance to spend the night in this small, but lovely hamlet.
Part of the
success of this project is due to the owners of the “Nido d’Aquila” farm