The Castle of Count Giancarlo Tramontano, although incomplete, is a valid example of a fortified structure in the Aragonese style, and it played an important role in the history of the city. On October 1st,1497, the city was sold to Giancarlo Tramontano, Master of the Mint of Aquila and Naples and son of banker, Ottaviano, and his wife, Fiola Penta. The Count had successfully embarked on a political, administrative and military career and represented people from the district of Sant’Agostino della Zecca and Chief Governor of the arts of silk and wool in Naples. In addition to being the owner of the Torre di Mare saltworks in Metaponto and the Iron and Steel factory in Matera, he controlled the grain market. He took possession of a large number of revenues, first of all, that of the Scannaggio, relating to the meat industry and this greatly exacerbated his relations with the local ruling class who held economic power at that time. Before his arrival, the castle, as noted by chronicler Eustachio Verricelli from Matera, was erected on top of the Lapillo hill, above the vineyards of the city, and was intended to resemble Naples’ Castle Novo, yet be more magnificent, for it was intended to be built more for reasons of personal prestige than for the defense of the city. Although never completed, it stands above the town in all its excellent austere engineering.

Via Castello 75100 Matera


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