+39 095 7167020
  • The salts-pans area in Nubia, Trapani
    The salt pan area in Nubia, Trapani
  • Citrons and tangerins at the market in Catania
    Citrons and tangerins at the market in Catania
  • A corner of the 18th century village of Marzamemi, Syracuse
    A corner of the 18th century village of Marzamemi, Syracuse
  • The stunning Scala dei Turchi near Realmonte, Agrigento
    The stunning Scala dei Turchi near Realmonte, Agrigento
  • A colorful wall again in Marzamemi, Syracuse
    A colorful wall again in Marzamemi, Syracuse
  • Local folklore in the Medieval town of Gangi, Madonie area
    Local folklore in the Medieval town of Gangi, Madonie area

Sign up
for our newsletter

The Roman and the Byzantine age


The Graeco-Carthaginian presence persisted until the presence of Rome began to be felt in the Mediterranean.

It was the Romans who overcame the Greek colonies and also subjugated the Carthaginian ones during the Punic Wars. Subsequently the island followed the vicissitudes of the power of Rome. A colonial-type economy was established and the land assigned to Roman proprietors using Asian slave labour. Sicily was regarded as a land to be exploited, expecially from an agricultural point of view to supply Rome with grain. Rome’s interest in Sicily was marginal and it determined political isolation and economic and cultural regression. Only at the end of the 3rd century A.D., the reform of the whole imperial provincial system by Diocletian led to a deep and significant change in the position of the island which became regio suburbicaria gravitating on the Roman court. The Roman aristocracy who owned vast latifundia, started actively managing their lands while their villae sprang up, full of artistic masterpieces.

When the Empire declined and the Barbarians descended on western Europe, the island immediately felt the repercussions of the radical transformation that was maturing in the new reality of the post-Roman era.
The Barbarians were in Sicily from 440 to 535, from the time when the chief of the Vandals occupied the province of Africa and imposed his hegemonic power throughout the western Mediterranean. Barbarian Sicily enjoyed a period of peace and even some measure of prosperity.

It was the Byzantine wars of reconquest that devastated the region for some two decades. At the end of the Gothic-Byzantine conflict in 552, Sicily became part of the Eastern Roman Empire and also subjugated the Carthaginian ones during the Punic Wars. Subsequently the island followed the vicissitudes of the power of Rome. A colonial-type economy was established and the land assigned to Roman proprietors using Asian slave labour. Sicily was regarded as a land to be exploited, expecially from an agricultural point of view to supply Rome with grain. Rome’s interest in Sicily was marginal and it determined political isolation and economic and cultural regression.
Only at the end of the 3rd century A.D., the reform of the whole imperial provincial system by Diocletian led to a deep and significant change in the position of the island which became regio suburbicaria gravitating on the Roman court. The Roman aristocracy who owned vast latifundia, started actively managing their lands while their villae sprang up, full of artistic masterpieces.

When the Empire declined and the Barbarians descended on western Europe, the island immediately felt the repercussions of the radical transformation that was maturing in the new reality of the post-Roman era.
The Barbarians were in Sicily from 440 to 535, from the time when the chief of the Vandals occupied the province of Africa and imposed his hegemonic power throughout the western Mediterranean. Barbarian Sicily enjoyed a period of peace and even some measure of prosperity.

It was the Byzantine wars of reconquest that devastated the region for some two decades. At the end of the Gothic-Byzantine conflict in 552, Sicily became part of the Eastern Roman Empire.

Send to a Friend:





Send to a friend Enquiry