The name Caltanissetta derives
from the Arabic etymon Qal'à Nissa, which means “Women’s
A nearby locality called Nissa already existed, identified
through ruins found at the archaeological site of Gibil Gab-ib.
The territory and castle passed under Norman domination under
Ruggero I of Sicily, around 1087, who were slowly conquering
the region from the Arabs. The king had a private feud and
founded the Priorship of San Giovanni.
In the 14th Century, Caltanissetta was the centre of a clash
between the Ventimiglia and the Chiaramonte families, whilst
during the subsequent century (1407), it passed into the hands
of the Moncada di Paternò family who resisted until
the end of 1812.
After participating in the revolutionary uprisings of 1848,
the City was annexed to the Reign of Italy in 1860.
It then saw strong economic development due to the capillary
presence of the mining industry throughout the territory.
A visit in this city to the Duomo (1570-1622), S. Sebastiano
and S. Agata (1605), S. Domenico (14th Century), which can
be found in the medieval quarter of S. Francesco, should not
Palazzo Moncade (1635) and Palazzo Vescovile (19th Century)
are also worth visiting.
Every year, during Saints Week in Caltanissetta, celebrations
begin Wednesday and proceed with various and very colourful
processions right up until the night of Good Friday.