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Petralia Soprana

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Altitude: 1.147 m. above sealevel
Surface: 56 km2
Population: 3.516 (petralesi)
Neighbouring communes : Alimena, Blufi, Bompietro, Gangi, Geraci Siculo,Petralia Sottana

Zip code: 90026
Dialling code: 0921

The origins of Petralia are supposed to go back to ancient Petra, a city founded by Sicans to better defend themselves from the constant attacks of the enemy. The town may have known a Greek settlement, but reliable news only date from the third century B.C. in the background of the war between the Romans and Carthaginians.

In 254 B.C. during the first Punic war, the inhabitants opened the door to the consuls Aulus Attilio and Gnaeus Cornelius, passing from the Carthaginian to the Roman dominion. Petra was then included among the civitas decumanae, which means the cities submitted to the tenth annual tribute in kind. It soon became one of the major turning machines of wheat of the Roman Empire.

In the ninth century it was conquered by the Arabs and renamed Batraliah.

In 1062 it was conquered by the Normans. Count Roger I fortified the castle, the towers and bastions. In 1067 the Count built another castle outside the walls, and a Church of San Teodoro on the north side. Petra became an important stronghold and was eventually ceded from Roger along with its vast territory, to his grandson Serlo.
In 1258 Petra passed to the county of Ventimiglia from Geraci and in 1396 to the county of Collesano. Since then it saw the succession of domains from Centelles of Cardona, and finally Moncada and Alvarez de Toledo.


Worth visiting: Castle Ruins, Mother Church, Church of St. Salvatore, Church of St. Giovanni Evangelista.


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