The Castle in Rocca San Felice: a monument which is part of the Cultural heritage of Italy
Very impressive site which stands at 750 m above sea level on the splendid Ansanto Valley. It represents the emblem of the medieval fortifications in Irpinia.
Bene ambientale architettonico: Architettura
Walls and remains of the Donjon are made of local stone.
Probably built around the year 850 BC
Via Ospedale -16 - 83050 - Rocca San Felice AV
Italian national property.
The survivings, that have come down to us and restored respecting the historical characteristics (part of the walls and the donjon.), are in good conditions.
The fort is part of a fortified area. The defensive structure, was probably built in the IX century by the Lombards to defend the Duchy of Benevento, against the invasions of the Byzantines. Between 1150 and 1160, as a consequence of the Norman occupation (1076), it was restored and enlarged. It was mentioned for the first time in a written document, the Catalogus baronum, with the name of Castellum Sancti Felicis, when the owner was found to be Ruggiero de Castelvetere, vassal of Elia Gesualdo. Probably in 1236 Henry, Frederick’s II son, was imprisoned in the dungeons and according to the legend his wife, Margaret of Austria, is supposed to wander among the ruins in search of her husband on full moon nights. Subsequently it lost its defensive function to be used for residential purposes. It was owned by the Aquino family and by the Saracenos starting from 1440, under which it was devastated by an earthquake in 1456, and again it passed to the Caracciolos, and to the Reale family, who in 1603 took care of its restoration, the baron Francesco Reale in particular. Finally, the Capobianco family lived there, until 1806. For a period of time it was used as a blacksmith's workshop before being abandoned.