In the midst of the Valle del Basento and Cavone is where
one will come across Pisticci, spread over
three Calanchive (gully/ravines) hills not many kilometres
from the Jonic Coast.
Pisticci’s foundation came about by the hands of the
Enotri during the Iron Age (IX century BC) as testified by
Necropolises (VII century BC) found on the territory. It was
a centre in contact with the Greek culture of Metaponto, enduring
vast cultural influences.
During the V century BC it excelled in pottery production
in Attic style which had its maximum exponent in the so called
“Pittore di Pisticci” (Pisticci Artist); probably
an artist who had emigrated from Greece.
During the III century BC, following the defeat of Taranto,
Pisticci also entered under the orbit of Rome and over the
years became an important agricultural centre; mainly for
Its name derives from the Latin Pesticius, that is pasture
land. Another etymology suggests it derives from the Greek
pistoikos, signifying “loyal place”, seemingly
a named earned in the field of war against the Romans (III
During the High Medieval period it was a Byzantine centre
which saw the arrival of Basilian monks escaping from iconoclastic
persecution operating in the East. These monks formed new
communities and also erected monasteries in Pisticci.
The district of Terravecchia was created and then made a fief
of the Normans during the XI century.
Under the Swabians, Pisticci was assigned to the Sanseverino
family (1212) who were succeeded by the Spinelli family only
It then passed to the Acquara and Càrdenas families.
Over the centuries the terrain where the village lay gave
way to landslides. The one during 1688 was terrible and caused
partial demolition of the ancient district of Terravecchia.
A visit to the City
The Mother Church, dedicated to Saints Peter and Paul, is
situated in a panoramic position facing the ruins of the ancient
Norman Castle. It guards canvases from the Neapolitan School
and precious wooden altars. Its bell tower dates back to the
era of the previous church (XII century).
In the City, which is characteristic for its white houses,
is where one will come across the Sant’Antonio Church
which preserves canvases of Domenico Guarino. In the ancient
district of Terravecchia, at 1km from the Village, one can
visit the Santa Maria del Casale Abbey (XI-XII century).
In the San Basilio locality, one can visit the Masseria Berlingieri,
derived from the Castle which was erected during 1050 by Robert
Guiscard, then handed over to the Basilian monks (1133) and
later the Benedictines.
Place of interest
The ruins of the Norman Castle; The Mother Church of Saints
Peter and Paul (1542); Sant’Antonio Church or Convent;
Madonna of Loreto Church; Franchi Tower; Dirupo District;
Palazzo Giannantonio; Palazzo De Franchi; Palazzo Rogges;
Palazzocchio; Immaculate Conception Church (XVI century);
Santa Maria del Casale Abbey (XII century); Masseria in the
San Basilio locality; Excursions to San Teodoro Nuovo (VII
Feast of Sant’Antuono on 17th January; Feast of the
Assunta on 15th August; Feast of San Rocco on 16th August;
Feast of the Madonna delle Grazie on the 2nd Sunday of September