Ramacca is a town of nearly 10,000
located at 266 m a.s.l. in a mountain area west of the Catania Plain.
Its name derives from Arab “rahal mohac”, meaning Hamlet
of Mohac, the commander who was granted the area in 1392. Other
hypothesises argue that it derives from Rammak, that is “mare
At one time, Ramacca was known as
the “granary” of Sicily. Farming, along with zootechnics,
is still a major economic resource. The city also boasts developed
Among the city’s best attractions
are the Mother Church, erected in the 1700’s, the Capuchin
Convent and, attached, the church of St. Joseph – both dating
from around 1750 –, the Palazzo di Città, built in
the 18th century by Princes Gravina.
The Mother Church, dedicated to
Mary’s Nativity, stands by the town’s main square. Originally
dedicated to the Holy Crucifix, it was subsequently enlarged to
satisfy the city needs, its total population being risen dramatically.
Restored in 1976, the church has a very simple design and needs
further works, especially inside.
The Convent – The convent
next to the church of the Immaculate Conception is the seat of the
Parish of Saint Joseph. It was founded by Prince Francesco Gravina.
Granted an annual sum until the convent’s suppression, today
it is open to public only thanks to the good will and devotion of
a friar of the order.
The Church of the Immaculate Conception
– The Neoclassical Chiesa dell’Immaculata has a single
nave ornamented by stuccoes, oil-paintings depicting Our Lady of
Sorrow, the Holy Cross and some Capuchin Saints, altars and wooden
statues by unknown artists.
Minor buildings and the city surroundings
– The church of Santa da Cascia, dated 1974, the Sacred Heart
Church, of recent date, in the lower side of the town, the Chiesa
of Santa Maria della Provvidenza, dated 1952, and the Archaeological
Museum are places of tourism interest.
of ancients sites have been discovered in the Ramacca territory,
such as the Montagna, with remnants of Greek necropolises, the Castellitto,
with remains of a Roman villa with splendid mosaic floorings, and
the Torricella, where a settlement and necropolis of the Bronze
Age were recovered.
The earliest settlement in the area,
called Eryke, dates back to the Greek Age. It was destroyed in the
4th century BC by Syracusan tyrant Agathocles. The new city dates
back to the Norman epoch, founded by Lord Ottaviano Gravina. His
descendants would be granted the title of Princes in 1688 and possessed
the town as far as the Feudalism abolishment in 1812.