Known by the name of Porta
del Gargano because of its geographical position, Manfredonia
is situated in the homonymous gulf in the province of Foggia.
The City was founded by Kind Manfredi of Swabia (1256), son
of the Emperor Federick II, from which its name is derived.
The King, in this way, wanted to give a home to all those
“orphaned” inhabitants of old Siponto, sadly destroyed
by an earthquake in 1223 and by tidal wave in 1256.
In a short time the City took form and was given important
rights to accelerate its geographic and economic expansion,
for example, some fiscal and duty free exemptions and the
right to mint its own currency.
The same Manfredi gave start to construction of the Swabian
Castle, who though, never saw its completion as he was defeated
and killed in the Battle of Benevento (1266) against the Angioini,
who disembarked in Italy by request of the Pope.
The new Kings named the City Sypontum Novellum, but its inhabitants
continued calling it by its first name as a sign of respect
to King Manfredi.
The City’s progress was undermined by the swamp phenomenon,
which had already brought ancient Siponto to its knees. Due
to this reason, Manfredonia became more isolated from other
cities in the territory. The problem was resolved during the
19th Century, with a project of reclamation.
The Turks, commanded by General Ali Pascià, arrived
by sea in 1620, and like all other cities in Puglia, destroyed
and burnt the City, which then took centuries to recover.
Its population awaited its economic development until the
19th Century, when together with the reclamation already mentioned,
began with the construction of the port.
On 24th May, 1915, Austrian ships attacked and bombarded the
Unquestioned symbols of the City of Manfredonia are the beautiful
and well preserved Swabian-Angioiono Castle and the San Lorenzo
Maiorano Cathedral (1270-1274, later reconstructed during
the 18th Century), the S. Maria pf Siponto Basilica (9th Century),
built on a the ground of a Paleochristian church and the S.
Leonardo Church 11th Century) situated 10 kilometres from
We would like to mention the following civil buildings: Palazzo
Cessa, Delli Santi, De Florio (15th Century) and Palazzo Celestini.
The City is lively during the Dauno Carnival, which has very
old origins from old Siponto, during which time there is a
parade of allegorical papier mache wagons.