Valle, Pietro della, 1586-1652, Italian traveler in Asia. He sailed (1614) from Venice; spent a year in Constantinople, where he studied Turkish and Arabic; then traveled in Egypt, the Holy Land, Arabia, Persia, and India, returning to Italy in 1626. An account of his travels based on his letters appeared in two volumes (1650-58); a part appeared in English, with a life of Della Valle as The Travels of Pietro della Valle in India (ed. by Edward Gray, Hakluyt Society, Vol. LXXXIV and LXXXV, 1892).
is a municipality in the county of Aust-Agder, Norway. Valle was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). Bykle was separated from Valle on 1 January 1902. Hylestad was separated from Valle on 1 July 1915, but it was again merged with Valle on 1 January 1962.

General information


The municipality (originally the parish) is named after the old Valle farm (Old Norse: Vollr), since the first church was built there. The form of the name is the genitive case, from the common expressions Vallar kirkja (church) and Vallar sókn (parish).


The coat-of-arms is from modern times. They were granted on 11 May 1984. The arms show five Saint Andrew's crosses, forming a larger cross. The composition was based on the decoration in the medieval church in Hylestad in the municipality, and this pattern is used in traditional clothes made in the municipality.


Valle is bordered to the north by Bykle in Aust-Agder and Tokke in Telemark, to the east by Fyresdal in Telemark, to the south by Bygland in Aust-Agder, and to the west by Sirdal in Vest-Agder county.

Valle lies in the middle of Setesdal, a valley and a traditional district in Aust-Agder that included the municipalities of Bykle, Valle, Bygland, Iveland, and Evje og Hornnes. The Otra river flows from the Hardangervidda plateau in Telemark to the north, through the valley of Setesdal (and through Valle), into the sea near the Kristiansand.

Valle is separated from the neighbouring valleys in the east and west by large mountain plateaus. Before the valley was linked by road to Kristiansand in the 1840s, people routinely traveled east and west across these moorlands. The highest point is the Skammefjell at 1418 m. Waterfalls include the Hallandsfossen and the Gloppefossen.

There are two central population areas in the municipality, Valle and Rysstad, with the administration of the municipality located in Valle. These were originally in two separate municipalities (Rysstad was part of Hylestad municipality), but Hylestad and Valle were combined in 1962.


The Hylestad stave church, constructed in the 13th century, in Setesdal was demolished in the 19th century. Its portal, with several carved scenes illustrating the legend of Sigurd Fåvnesbane (Sigurd the Dragon-slayer), is on display at University Museum of Antiquities in Oslo (Universitetets Oldsaksamling, Historisk Museum, Oslo). Sigurd's slaying of Fafnir is described in the Prose Edda of Snorri Sturluson and the Saga of the Volsungs as well as alluded to in Beowulf and Njal's Saga.

The Byklestigen pass is a torturous trail up a steep cliff face. Until the 1870s it was the only route to travel from Valle the middle Setesdal valley to Bykle in the north. It runs above the river Otra and was the site of numerous accidents on the hazardous route. Bykle was split off from the older municipality of Valle in 1903.

Between Valle in Setesdal on the western side of the mountains and Fyresdal on the eastern side, one finds a medieval track over the high plateau that priests and bishops used to get between the counties of Agder and Telemark. This track is named Bispevegen ("Bishop's Road") and every year a march called "Bispevegmarsjen" ("The Bishop's Road March") starts at Kleivgrend in Fyresdal.

Old silver smithies and barns can be seen in Rysstad. Traditional music is popular in this region, and there is a Jew's harp monument in the town.

Famous residents


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