Comune di Grottaglie

Church of Madonna del Lume.

Coat of arms

Location of Grottaglie in Italy

Coordinates: 40°32′N 17°26′E / 40.533°N 17.433°E / 40.533; 17.433
Country Italy
Region  Apulia
Province / Metropolitan city Taranto (TA)
Frazioni Carraro delle Vacche, Paparazio
  Mayor Ciro D'Alò
  Total 101 km2 (39 sq mi)
Elevation 133 m (436 ft)
Population (31 December 2014)
  Total 32,503
  Density 320/km2 (830/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Grottagliesi
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
  Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 74023
Dialing code 099
Patron saint St. Francis of Geronimo, St. Cyrus
Saint day January 31
Website Official website

Grottaglie is a town and comune in the province of Taranto, Apulia, in southern Italy.


Grottaglie is located in the Salento peninsula, a whole rock of limestone dividing Adriatic sea from Ionian sea. The countryside around the city is scattered with vast and deep ravines that open the ground into the heart of the limestone-rock. The landscape is characterized by the presence of such ancient and enthralling rupestrian ravine encircling the built-up area.


The name Grottaglie derives from the Latin Cryptae Aliae, meaning "many ravines", which has been inhabited since the Palaeolithic Age. The ancestral part of Grottaglie was one of the citadels in the area, referred to in Medieval documents as Casale Cryptalerum, founded during the Dark Ages by the inhabitants of the caves who sheltered there due to Saracen invasions.

The fief of Grottaglie was donated by the Norman overlords to the archbishopric of Taranto in the 11th century. In the 14th century the ecclesiastic administration provided the fief with fortifications, walls, a castle (Castello Episcopio, Italian for “archbishop’s castle”) as well as with the Chiesa Matrice ("Mother church").

Since the 15th-17th centuries the jurisdiction over Grottaglie fief was split between the ecclesiastic administration (civil law) and the lay feudal lords (criminal law, Cicinelli-Caracciolo family). Fights between these two competing authorities and periodic revolts by the heavily-taxed population were the leit-motiv of Grottaglie’s history until the abolition of feudalism (1806). After the Italian unification Grottaglie had the first urban expansion outside its Medieval walls.

Main sights


Folkloristic and religious events include the commemoration-day of St. Cyrus and Easter-period when the Medieval-rooted confraternal religious orders perform their processions during the days of the Holy Week (Easter rituals include procession and pilgrimage of confrères called “Bubbli-Bubbli” through the streets of town).

Other events include:


Grapes and ceramics-industry are two traditional elements of the local economy since the times of Greater Greece.

The numerous ceramic finds, tracing back to the Classical Age and kept in the National Museum of "Magna Grecia" in Taranto, reveal the antique roots of this handicrafts production which was privileged by the presence of considerable amounts of clay in the surrounding territory. More recently, records dating back to the 18th century report at the time 42 companies in Grottaglie operating in the ceramics-sector with a total of 5,000 employees. In addition to ceramics, also agricultural products such as olive oil and excellent choice dessert grapes are of great importance.

Alenia Composite is a factory of Alenia group producing parts for the Boeing 787.

This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 6/23/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.