Terracina: the history

Supposedly founded by a group of Spartans who fled their city in order to escape the reforms of Lycurgus, the city of Terracina was conquered by the Volsci before becoming a Roman colony in 329.
Enlarged and renovated during the reign of Sulla, the city soon became one of the most flourishing centres in Lazio.
In the 4th century Bc, it was the birthplace of the Emperor Galba and throughout the imperial age it was the favourite holiday resort of the Roman nobility.
Both Trajan and Antoninus Pius improved the city's ancient port, while Trajan also improved the surface of the Via Appia.
Appointed a diocesan centre in the 4th century, the city suffered serious moments of decline as a result of barbarian invasions and Saracen attacks.
In 882, the city was incorporated into the estate of the church of Saint Peter, although it was nevertheless granted considerable autonomy.
Defended against the Frangipane family by the papal authorities, in 1088 the city was chosen as the location of the first conclave to be held outside Rome during which Pope Urban II was elected.
Although the progressive swamping of the Pontine plain caused the city to fall into decline, in the 18th century its fortunes revived following drainage of the surrounding area by Pope Pius Vi, who also extended the city.
Unfortunately much of the medieval city was destroyed by bombing during the second world war, although some early 13th - late 14th century Gothic style buildings still survive.

Its enviable geographical position, beautiful medieval city centre and marvellous promontory make Terracina one of the most delightful cities in the region of Lazio.
On clear days the view from the city extends as far as the island of Ischia and Mount Vesuvius.

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