Velia is a center of Cilento, on a spur of Mount Gelbison or Monte Sacro. The town was called simply «Novi» until 1862 when, following the unification of Italy, was joined to the definite Velia, because the inhabitants of this city of Roman origin, put to flight by the Vandals, founded a new town just where now stands the «New Velia ».
The first news of Novi is in a parchment of 1005 preserved in the diplomatic room of the Abbey of Cava. The fortunes of Novi are undoubtedly attributable to the unique geographical location. On the top of that hill from the steep slopes nations Enotrian already had elevated one of their strongholds - shelter, that in the second half of the fourth century BC. the ionic Velia had strengthened, particularly for the political situation of that time.
Due to the location of that hill and because on the terraces sloping from his foot was the most important road junction and forced the territory, Novi was elected by the Normans in the seat of the barony. From the hill, also, it was easy to monitor the pace of Cannalonga and the way of Badolato, from Novi, above all, it was possible to monitor the ancient salt route that from Velia went up to precious iron deposits.
In the place there was a longobard allocation, which can be seen well from local place names, residues that lexical items from historical sources. In fact, near Novi, is the name that we also find Lammardo near Celle of Bulgheria, secure settlement of Bulgari auxiliary of the Longobards.
This is also proved by the fact that the first lords of Novi were the De Magna, of Germanic origin (De Alemagnia) and certainly an authentic Lombard was the third William, being the father, Pandolfo, grandson of that Pandolfo, first ladies Capaccio and Corneto, who was killed while trying to defend his brother Guaimario V, prince of Salerno.Since 1200 Novi was almost continuously owned by very influential feudal lords, just consider the positions that they occupy acting within the kingdom: Gisulfo the Magnia executioner of Terre di Lavoro, Thomas Marzano, great Admiral of the Kingdom, Antonello de Petruciis, Prime Minister King Ferrante of Aragon, Ettore Pignatelli who rose to the highest offices in the kingdom.
This explains the economic importance over time by the great estate of Novi, acquired partly as a result of the exemptions and privileges which the feudal lords of Novi were able to obtain from the Court of Naples.At the time of the Sicilian Vespers (1298) continued the construction work of the new feudal palace begun by William Marzano, who replaced the Lombard castle, donated to Celestine along with the shrine of the Virgin of the Sacred Mountain.
The participation of Marzano the Conspiracy of the Barons, led to the seizure of their property. Novi was sold by the King to his butler, belonging to the family Carrafa, who retained possession until 1513. In 1647 Gironimo Carrafa held the barony as legal guardian of Princess Eleonora, who married that in Novi, remained widow and soon died without heirs. In the period 1785-1787 Novi is payable to Antonio Persico but in 1805 the barony had been redeemed by the family Zattara and it is made out to Caesar that raft, but it was above all the absence of the barons from Novi, instead of allowing greater freedom, worsened the conditions of that population. The Marquises Raft were well liked by the local people, who continued to reside in Novi, even after the subversive law of feudalism, until the early twentieth century.
In 1902, the last heir died the Marquise D. Emilia Raft.Giustiniani calls it «Novi land » and describes « Thisland is ancient, we have some monument that drawits origin. After more miles, Is there a Sanctuary under the titleMadonna del Monte de Novi» «And residents to the number of about 1,000 are employed in agriculture andpastoralism».
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