Manfredonia
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MANFREDONIA

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 City.
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 the centre.
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.

MANFREDONIA
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