Teora is a small town in the province of Avellino, in the Campania region of southern Italy.
Teora is bordered by the towns of Caposele
, Conza della Campania
and Morra De Sanctis
The origin of the village was recorded by the Greek historian Dionisio of Alicarnasso (I century B.C.) and by the Italian historian Marco Terenzio Varrone. It began as an agricultural and military centre, and was named after the Teora family, which founded it upon their arrival in Italy (Magna Grecia) from Greece at XIV B.C.
It was also reported that the tribuno della plebe Milone died there during the civil war between Caesar and Pompey in the Roman era. In a Privilegio of 1200, granted by Pope Innocenzo III to Pantaleone, archbishop of Conza, Teora referred to using the name Tugurium Biarium for the first time.
Filippo was lord of Teora in 1332, and its domain was acquired by the Earl Giacomo Arcuccio in 1376. Subsequently, it passed on to the Gesualdo Family and from 1676 to 1806, Teora belonged to the Mirelli Princes.
Three earthquakes have occurred in Teora, in 1694, 1732, and 1980 respectively; Terremoto dell'Irpinia destroyed much of the village's historical and cultural identity. Twenty-five years after that last earthquake, Teora was awarded the Gold medal to the civil merit.
Weddings in Teora follow a centuries-old tradition in which the groom serenades his bride in the evening preceding the wedding. Accompanied by local singers, the groom will usually stand under the balcony of her bedroom, awaiting the bride's response to his love. After a few minutes, the bride is expected to switch on the light and go out onto the balcony, in sign of her positive response. The evening usually continues with music and songs in the bride's house.
Festival of Serenades
Every year in the first half of August, the Festival of Serenades
takes place, where five Teorese girls stand on five geranium
decorated balconies, each waiting for her loved one. While some professional menestrelli
play their love songs, each man climbs a rope ladder to reach his lady and bring her a red rose. A timid and chaste kiss is the prize for the serenata. Rumour has it that men take advantage of the event to make real wedding proposals to their counterparts.
Fountain of Monte
The fountain, also called the fountain of the dead men
, has origins that go back to the 12th century
, when the Church of Conza was designated by Pope Callisto II
as a necropolis
. The fountain was completely reconstructed over the centuries, today it is a simple-structured building.
Church of Saint Nicholas
The precise date of building of the church is not known since all documents were lost in a fire in 1690. The church has probably been many reconstructed many times, and the present structure, with its 16th century appearance, was completed in the 20th century. The church was destroyed four times from earthquakes in 1604, 1694, 1732 and 1980 respectively. Today, only the skeleton of the greater altar and the ancient columns' stone bases remain of the majestic structure. The new church, rebuilt after the 1980 earthquake , includes pieces obtained from the destroyed church and the Congregation di Morti
, also destroyed by the earthquake of 1980.
Corona flour mill
The Corona flour mill is situated at the edge of the historical centre of the village. The precise age of the building is unknown, and the activity of the flour mill ended about 50 years ago. The earthquake of November 1980 destroyed the central part of the mill.
Fountain (public washhouse) of Piano
Situated to the west of the area, the rectangular fountain is subdivided in three zones with pillars. The water flows out of five stone masks and into three bathtubs leaning on the wall. Public washhouses are situated at the rear of the monument.
Stone of the civil weddings
Congrega public square was named after the Congrega little church. At one time there was a tree in the small piaza on was a stone table on which were written public documents as part of the civil ritual of the wedding. It is unknown in which time the civil ritual of the wedding came to be celebrated in public and on this public square. The table is constituted from two stone pillars with on a thick slab 20 cm.
Festivals and events
The town's patron is Saint Nicholas, who is remembered on August 13 and on December 6.
This is a typical masque related to the day of Saint Anthony, January 17, on which the first day of the carnival
is held. This event is featured in the Museum of Popular Traditions
Pizza of Saint Martin
Potato pie generally eaten on November 11, (day of Saint Martin). According to the tradition, a little coin is hidden in the pie: the one who finds it in his or her portion, has the right to decide the menu of the party that takes place on November 21 (calle Cummit
Notes and references