Palma di Montechiaro

Palma di Montechiaro (Sicilian: Parma di Muntichiaru) is a town and comune in the province of Agrigento, Sicily, southern Italy.

Palma di Montechiaro
Comune di Palma di Montechiaro
The Mother Church in Palma di Montechiaro.
The Mother Church in Palma di Montechiaro.
Coat of arms of Palma di Montechiaro
Coat of arms
Location of Palma di Montechiaro
Palma di Montechiaro is located in Italy
Palma di Montechiaro
Palma di Montechiaro
Location of Palma di Montechiaro in Sicily
Palma di Montechiaro is located in Sicily
Palma di Montechiaro
Palma di Montechiaro
Palma di Montechiaro (Sicily)
Coordinates: 37°12′N 13°46′E / 37.200°N 13.767°E / 37.200; 13.767Coordinates: 37°12′N 13°46′E / 37.200°N 13.767°E / 37.200; 13.767
CountryItaly
RegionSicily
ProvinceAgrigento (AG)
FrazioniMarina di Palma, Villaggio Giordano
Government
 • MayorStefano Castellino
Area
 • Total77.06 km2 (29.75 sq mi)
Elevation
160 m (520 ft)
Population
 (31 December 2017)[2]
 • Total22,663
 • Density290/km2 (760/sq mi)
Demonym(s)Palmesi
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
92020
Dialing code0922
Patron saintMaria Santissima del Rosario
Saint day8 September
The Castle Chiaromonte.

Formerly known as Palma, in 1863, Montechiaro was added to the name, in honour of the Chiaramonte family whose stronghold is close to the town.

ControversyEdit

In 2002, La Repubblica reported the presence of the prominent Italian politician Angelino Alfano (a Silvio Berlusconi protégé) at the 1996 wedding of the daughter of Croce Napoli (died 2001), believed by investigators to be the Mafia boss of Palma di Montechiaro, as shown on an amateur video of the party. Alfano, then a deputy of the Sicilian Regional Assembly, was greeted with affection by Croce Napoli. Alfano at first told La Repubblica he had "no memory or recollection of this wedding" and that "I never participated in a wedding of Mafia or of their children, I do not know his wife, Gabriella, and I've never heard of Mr. Croce Napoli who was said to be boss of Palma di Montechiaro."[3] Later he said that he remembered that he was actually at the wedding but had been invited by the groom and did not know the bride and her family.[4]

Main sightsEdit

  • Mother Church
  • Castle
  • Benedictine Monastery
  • Ducal Palace
  • San Carlo Tower
  • Palazzo degli Scolopi
  • Ruins of the Baroque church of Santa Maria della Luce
  • Archaeological park of Zubbia

In popular cultureEdit

Palma di Montechiaro is associated with Italian author Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa.[5]

New Zealand author James McNeish, who visited Palma di Montechiaro in the early 1960s, describes it as a place of abject poverty, avoided by locals. ‘Its poverty is spectacular. The cavernous streets are scored by serpentines of black faeces and other matter and a veil of chalky dust pollutes the air. From the main road the whole plaster town tilts downwards, as though arrested in a macabre lunge towards the sea. Once I drove through with a woman companion. She looked once, and screamed. She did not speak again until we were some distance outside the township' [6]

  1. ^ "Superficie di Comuni Province e Regioni italiane al 9 ottobre 2011". Istat. Retrieved 16 March 2019.
  2. ^ "Popolazione Residente al 1° Gennaio 2018". Istat. Retrieved 16 March 2019.
  3. ^ Francesco Viviano (5 February 2002). "Il bacio pericoloso di Alfano". La Repubblica. p. 1. Retrieved 26 December 2013.
  4. ^ Francesco Viviano (6 February 2002). "Alfano ricorda: 'Ero amico dello sposo". La Repubblica. p. 6. Retrieved 26 December 2013.
  5. ^ http://livingagrigento.it/en_GB/Citta/main/citta?id=1254_Palma-di-Montechiaro</ Retrieved 2019-05-01
  6. ^ McNeish, James (1965) Fire Under the Ashes: The Life of Danilo Dolci. Hodder and Stoughton Ltd.