Val Demone or Val di Demona (English: 'Valley of Demona') is a historical and geographical region encompassing the north-eastern third of Sicily. Historically, it was one of the three valli of Sicily.
Val Demone was the last part of the island to be conquered by the Arabs in the 10th century. Christian refugees from other parts of Sicily congregated there, and the region remained in contact with the Byzantine provinces in southern Italy. It was the base for the Byzantine attempt to reconquer Sicily under George Maniakes in the early 11th century. Consequently it was the least Arabicized and Islamized part of Sicily.
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea and one of the 20 regions of Italy. It is one of the five Italian autonomous regions and is officially referred to as Regione Siciliana. The region has 5 million inhabitants. Its capital city is Palermo.
Magna Graecia was the name given by the Romans to the coastal areas of Southern Italy in the present-day regions of Campania, Apulia, Basilicata, Calabria and Sicily; these regions were extensively populated by Greek settlers. The settlers who began arriving in the 8th century BC brought with them their Hellenic civilization which left a lasting imprint on Italy such as in the culture of ancient Rome. They also influenced the native peoples, especially the Sicilian Sicels, who became hellenised after they adopted the Greek culture as their own.
Roger I, nicknamed Roger Bosso and The Great Count, was a Norman nobleman who became the first Count of Sicily from 1071 to 1101. He was a member of the House of Hauteville, and his descendants in the male line continued to rule Sicily down to 1194.
The Kingdom of Sicily was a state that existed in the south of the Italian peninsula and for a time the region of Ifriqiya from its founding by Roger II of Sicily in 1130 until 1816. It was a successor state of the County of Sicily, which had been founded in 1071 during the Norman conquest of the southern peninsula. The island was divided into three regions: Val di Mazara, Val Demone and Val di Noto; val being the apocopic form of the word vallo, derived from the Arabic word wilāya.
Lucania was a historical region of Southern Italy. It was the land of the Lucani, an Oscan people. It extended from the Tyrrhenian Sea to the Gulf of Taranto.
Southern Italy, also known as Meridione or Mezzogiorno, is a macroregion of Italy consisting of the southern half of the Italian state.
The Emirate of Sicily was an Islamic kingdom that ruled the island of Sicily from 831 to 1091. Its capital was Palermo, which during this period became a major cultural and political center of the Muslim world.
The history of Sicily has been influenced by numerous ethnic groups. It has seen Sicily controlled by external powers – Phoenician and Carthaginian, Greek, Roman, Vandal and Ostrogoth, Byzantine Greek, Aghlabid, Kalbid, Norman, Aragonese and Spanish – but also experiencing important periods of independence, as under the indigenous Sicanians, Elymians and Sicels, and later as the Emirate of Sicily, County of Sicily, and Kingdom of Sicily. The Kingdom was founded in 1130 by Roger II, belonging to the Siculo-Norman family of Hauteville. During this period, Sicily was prosperous and politically powerful, becoming one of the wealthiest states in all of Europe. As a result of the dynastic succession, then, the Kingdom passed into the hands of the Hohenstaufen. At the end of the 13th century, with the War of the Sicilian Vespers between the crowns of Anjou and Aragon, the island passed to the latter. In the following centuries the Kingdom entered into the personal union with the Spaniard and Bourbon crowns, preserving however its substantial independence until 1816. Although today an Autonomous Region of the Republic of Italy, it has its own distinct culture.
Alcara li Fusi is a comune (municipality) in the Metropolitan City of Messina in the Italian region Sicily, located about 120 kilometres (75 mi) east of Palermo and about 80 kilometres (50 mi) west of Messina. A
The history of Islam in Sicily and Southern Italy began with the first Arab settlement in Sicily, at Mazara, which was captured in 827. The subsequent rule of Sicily and Malta started in the 10th century. The Emirate of Sicily lasted from 831 until 1061, and controlled the whole island by 902. Though Sicily was the primary Muslim stronghold in Italy, some temporary footholds, the most substantial of which was the port city of Bari, were established on the mainland peninsula, especially in mainland Southern Italy, though Muslim raids, mainly those of Muhammad I ibn al-Aghlab, reached as far north as Naples, Rome and the northern region of Piedmont. The Muslim raids were part of a larger struggle for power in Italy and Europe, with Christian Byzantine, Frankish, Norman and local Italian forces also competing for control. Muslims were sometimes sought as allies by various Christian factions against other factions.
The Muslim conquest of Sicily began in June 827 and lasted until 902, when the last major Byzantine stronghold on the island, Taormina, fell. Isolated fortresses remained in Byzantine hands until 965, but the island was henceforth under Muslim rule until conquered in turn by the Normans in the 11th century.
The term Norman-Arab-Byzantine culture, Norman-Sicilian culture or, less inclusively, Norman-Arab culture, refers to the interaction of the Norman, Latin, Arab and Byzantine Greek cultures following the Norman conquest of Sicily and of Norman Africa from 1061 to around 1250. The civilization resulted from numerous exchanges in the cultural and scientific fields, based on the tolerance showed by the Normans towards the Greek-speaking populations and the Muslim settlers. As a result, Sicily under the Normans became a crossroad for the interaction between the Norman and Latin Catholic, Byzantine-Orthodox and Arab-Islamic cultures.
Greek presence in Italy begins with the migrations of traders and colonial foundations in the 8th century BC, continuing down to the present time. Nowadays, there is an ethnic minority known as the Griko people, who live in the Southern Italian regions of Calabria and Apulia, especially the peninsula of Salento, within the ancient Magna Graecia region, who speak a distinctive dialect of Greek called Griko. They are believed to be remnants of the ancient and medieval Greek communities, who have lived in the south of Italy for centuries. A Greek community has long existed in Venice as well, the current center of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Italy and Malta, which in addition was a Byzantine province until the 10th century and held territory in Morea and Crete until the 17th century. Alongside this group, a smaller number of more recent migrants from Greece lives in Italy, forming an expatriate community in the country. Today many Greeks in Southern Italy follow Italian customs and culture, experiencing assimilation.
Cefalù, the classical Cephaloedium (Κεφαλοίδιον), is a city and comune in the Italian Metropolitan City of Palermo, located on the Tyrrhenian coast of Sicily about 70 km (43 mi) east of the provincial capital and 185 km (115 mi) west of Messina. The town, with its population of just under 14,000, is one of the major tourist attractions in the region. Despite its size, every year it attracts millions of tourists from all parts of Sicily and also, from all over Italy and Europe.
The so-called Lombards of Sicily are an ethnolinguistic minority living in Sicily, southern Italy, speaking an isolated variety of Gallo-Italic languages, the so-called Gallo-Italic of Sicily.
During the Muslim rule on Sicily, the island was divided into three different administrative regions: the Val di Noto in the southeast, the Val Demone in the northeast and the Val di Mazara in the west. Each zone has a noticeably different agriculture and topography and they converged near Enna (Castrogiovanni). The term val or vallo is probably derived from the Siculo Arabic: wilayah, meaning "province".
The Battle of the Straits was fought in early 965 between the fleets of the Byzantine Empire and the Fatimid Caliphate in the Straits of Messina. It resulted in a major Fatimid victory, and the final collapse of the attempt of Emperor Nikephoros II Phokas to recover Sicily from the Fatimids.
Ahmad ibn Ziyadat Allah ibn Qurhub, commonly known simply as Ibn Qurhub, ruled Sicily in rebellion against the Fatimid Caliphate, from 913–916. He launched raids against the Byzantine Empire in southern Italy and against the shores of Fatimid Ifriqiya, but was deposed and handed over to the Fatimids, who executed him and his followers in July 916.
Salim ibn Asad ibn Abi Rashid was the governor of Sicily for the Fatimid Caliphate for twenty years, from 917 to 937.
The Siege of Taormina in 902 ended the conquest of the Byzantine city of Taormina, in northeastern Sicily, by the Aghlabids. The campaign was led by the deposed Aghlabid emir, Ibrahim II, as a form of armed pilgrimage and holy war. Ibrahim's forces defeated the Byzantine garrison in a hard-fought battle in front of the city walls, and laid siege to the city. Left unsupported by the Byzantine government, Taormina capitulated on 1 August. The population was massacred or sold into slavery. The fall of this last major Byzantine stronghold signalled the completion of the Muslim conquest of Sicily, which had been ongoing since the 820s, although some minor Byzantine outposts survived until the 960s.
At the end of the twelfth century ... While in Apulia Greeks were in a majority – and indeed present in any numbers at all – only in the Salento peninsula in the extreme south, at the time of the conquest they had an overwhelming preponderance in Lucaina and central and southern Calabria, as well as comprising anything up to a third of the population of Sicily, concentrated especially in the north-east of the island, the Val Demone.