Penne, Abruzzo

Comune di Penne

Coat of arms

Location of Penne in Italy

Coordinates: 42°27′N 13°55′E / 42.450°N 13.917°E / 42.450; 13.917Coordinates: 42°27′N 13°55′E / 42.450°N 13.917°E / 42.450; 13.917
Country Italy
Region Abruzzo
Province / Metropolitan city Pescara (PE)
Frazioni Baricelle, Casale, Collalto, Colle d'Omero, Colle Formica, Colle Maggio, Colle San Giovanni, Colle Sant'Angelo, Colle Stella, Colletrotta, Conaprato, Mallo, Pagliari, Ponte Sant'Antonio, Porta Caldaia, Roccafinadamo, San Pellegrino, Serpacchio, Teto, Villa Degna
  Mayor Rocco D'Alfonso
  Total 91 km2 (35 sq mi)
Elevation 438 m (1,437 ft)
Population (November 30, 2014)
  Total 12,451
  Density 140/km2 (350/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Pennesi
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
  Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 65017
Dialing code 085
Patron saint St. Maximus
Saint day May 7
Website Official website

Penne (Italian pronunciation: [ˈpɛnne]) (Pònne in the local dialect) is an Italian town in the province of Pescara, in the Abruzzo region, in the mid-southern Italy. According to the last census in 2014 the population was 12,451.[1] In 2012 Penne joined the prestigious club of the "Most beautiful towns of Italy" (Borghi più belli d'Italia) [2]

Penne is today among the most important towns in the Vestini area, sitting in the hills between the Apennine Mountains and the Adriatic Sea and opening the way for the National Park of Gran Sasso and Monti della Laga through the Regional Natural Reserve "Lake of Penne".

The widespread use of bricks in every historical building and paving gave Penne the appellation of “Città del mattone”, i.e. the "Town of bricks". In 2006, Penne was awarded the silver medal of civic merit for the World War II events.[3]

The economy of Penne is driven mainly by tourism, agriculture, the regional hospital and Brioni, the Italian fashion house whose suits are still hand sewn by Pennese women.


The town is ancient, having been occupied from at least the mid-neolithic period. It was a seat of government of the Vestini people no later than 300 BC. In around 89 BC, the Vestini along with other Italic tribes were defeated by the Romans in the Social War, and became citizens of Rome.[4] The town was known as Pinna Vestinorum during the time of the Roman Republic.

In the Middle Ages, Penne was under the control of the Lombards as part of the Duchy of Spoleto.[5] Starting around 1130 Penne became part of the Kingdom of Sicily. In 1538 the town was given by emperor Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor to his daughter Margaret of Parma as a gift for her wedding to Ottavio Farnese.[6] Under Margaret, Penne became important as a center of power in the Abruzzo region, and many fine palaces and civic structures were erected during this time.


Penne is a town in the adriatic side of the Abruzzo region, sitting on several hills in between the valleys of Tavo and Fino rivers. Penne covers an area measuring about 91.20 km2 .[7] It is 31 km far from Pescara, 35 km from Chieti; and 67 km from Teramo.


The weather in Penne can enjoy the beneficial currents from the Adriatic sea (only 20 km far from the town) but at the same time it is influenced by the Gran Sasso mountain chain. According to the climatic data collected during the period 1961-1990, the average temperature of the coldest month, i.e. January, is +5,6 °C where the minimals are about 2-3 °C while the maximals about 9-11 °C; in the hottest month, August, the average temperature is +24,7 °C where the minimals are about 19 °C, while the maximals 30 °C.[8] The climate is therefore characterized by hot summers and rather mild winters, where the annual thermal excursion is anyway lower than 21 °C like in the coast. However, in winter snow and frosts might happen when cold currents from the Balkans or the northern Europe irrupt on the Adriatic coast. During these episodes, minimal temperatures can fall down to -5 °C. Precipitation levels are on average about 845 mm per year according to the climatic data collected during the period 1951 - 2009 [9] and are generally higher than the ones observed in other hillside cities in the sea-side of Abruzzo (around 600–700 mm per year). The climate in Penne can be therefore considered as Mediterranean due to the beneficial influence of the Adriatic sea on the temperatures. However, from a pluviometric stand-point, the town's weather sits in the borderline in between a subtropical humid and mediterranean weather. In summertime, precipitations are rare anyway and mainly occur as thunderstorms.

Main sights

Aliprandi Palace

The main characteristic of the old town is its streets and houses are built in bricks, so in the past Penne was known as "the small Siena".

Penne's churches include the 12th-century church of Santa Maria in Colleromano, and the Duomo, which now houses the Diocese Museum including a crypt dating from the 8th century. Other churches include Sant'Agostino (with a historical bell-tower), San Giovanni Battista, San Giovanni Evangelista, Annunziata, Madonna del Carmine, San Nicola, San Domenico.

Dome of Penne

Notable religious structures

SS. Annunziata's Church
Santa Chiara's Church
San Francesco's gate

Notable civic structures

Aliprandi's Palace facade
Medieval stone portal of a Palance in Penne

Other notable structures

Other points of interest


  1. "Statistiche demografiche ISTAT". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  2. "I Borghi più belli d'Italia". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  3. "Penne medaglia d'argento al valor civile - il Centro". (in (Italian)). 2006-09-08. Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  4. "Kingdoms of Italy - Vestini (Sabellians)". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  5. "Kingdoms of Italy - Spoleto". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  6. Margaret of Parma: A Life By Charles R. Steen ISBN 978-9004257443
  7. "Superfici delle unità amministrative a fini statistici". (in (Italian)). 2013-02-19. Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  8. Tabella climatica mensile e annuale (TXT) in Archivio climatico DBT, ENEA.
  10. 1 2 "Abruzzo Cultura - Scheda Chiesa medievale prescelta - Provincia di Pescara". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  11. "Abruzzo Cultura - Scheda Barocco prescelta - Provincia di Pescara". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  12. "Abruzzo Cultura - Scheda Barocco prescelta - Provincia di Pescara". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  13. "Abruzzo Cultura - Scheda Barocco prescelta - Provincia di Pescara". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  14. "Abruzzo Cultura - Scheda Barocco prescelta - Provincia di Pescara". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  15. "Abruzzo Cultura - Scheda Barocco prescelta - Provincia di Pescara". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  16. "Abruzzo Cultura - Scheda Barocco prescelta - Provincia di Pescara". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  17. "Abruzzo Cultura - Scheda Barocco prescelta - Provincia di Pescara". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  18. "Abruzzo Cultura - Scheda Barocco prescelta - Provincia di Pescara". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
  19. "Penne". Retrieved 2016-07-28.
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