Castello Tramontano (Tramontano Castle), Matera

Castello Tramontano (Tramontano Castle), Matera

There are no politics like feudal politics. One day, in 1506, King Ferdinand II of Naples decided to remove some baronies from counts in his kingdom and give them to Spanish nobles. Ferdinand liked Spanish nobles. He was a Spanish noble himself. When he learned of the King's plan, Gian Carlo Tramontano, Count of Matera, sprang into action.

Gian Carlo and his wife, Elisabetta, went to see the King. Elisabetta gave the King's wife a gold necklace and pearls worth 25,000 ducats, and Gian Carlo kept his county. Better yet, now he could finish his castle. He raised taxes.

The tax thing was a bridge too far for the people of Matera. They were already on edge about the Count's habit of "Droit de Seigneur" (right of the lord), the bedding of every new bride in the county on her wedding night.

One day in 1514, as the couple was leaving holy mass at the Cathedral of Matera, angry peasants set upon the duke, stripping him and beating him to death. The countess escaped unharmed. Church bells rang, and work on the castle stopped. The Count's castle remained unfinished. In 2008, restoration work on the building and the surrounding park began.

The Tramontano Castle was constructed in the Aragonese style, with a central keep flanked by two lower towers. The towers and keep have been round with crenelated tops. The walls are also crenelated. The goal of the restoration is to renew the moat and the tufa walls. The project is financed by lottery funds.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Matera. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

Download The GPSmyCity App

Castello Tramontano (Tramontano Castle) on Map

Sight Name: Castello Tramontano (Tramontano Castle)
Sight Location: Matera, Italy (See walking tours in Matera)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Matera, Italy

Create Your Own Walk in Matera

Create Your Own Walk in Matera

Creating your own self-guided walk in Matera is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Matera's Ancient Cave Churches

Matera's Ancient Cave Churches

Within the old city of Matera, there are more than 160 churches. Many of these are actually carved into the soft limestone cliffs lining the Gravina River. There are even some used for pagan rituals. The churches were carved from existing caves and tunnels. More than a few sanctified cave churches have been converted to storage and homes.

A good example to start with is the St. Anthony...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.7 Km or 1.1 Miles
Matera Introduction Walking Tour

Matera Introduction Walking Tour

Architectural historian Anne Parmly Toxey said the cave areas of Matera had been occupied for at least 3,000 years. There have been settlements in Matera since the Paleolithic era.

The town itself was founded in 251 BC by Roman consul Lucius Caecilius Metellus. He called it Matheola. Subsequently, the town was occupied by Longobards, Byzantines, Saracens, Swabians, Angevins, Aragonese, and...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.4 Km or 1.5 Miles