The land
of wonders


 
 

The Roots


The warrior with the feathered hat.

Treasure buried in the land

The Warrior of Capestrano, the most famous Italic warrior, is an iconic symbol of Abruzzo. The statue was accidentally discovered in 1934 in a field in the valley below Capestrano by local farmer Michele Castagna, earning him the nickname "ju mammocce", meaning “doll of stone” in the Abruzzese dialect. The Warrior depicts a Vestini prince, Nevio Pompuledio, and originally stood on top of his burial mound near Capestrano. The stone figure is defined by its huge, flat, wide-brimmed headgear, about 65 cm in diameter, crowned with a yet to be deciphered feature. It has been described as a cap decorated by a crest of feathers, held together by parallel fins. The 6th century BCE Warrior of Capestrano remains one of the most monumental and impressive pieces of Italic art.


The holy traveller

Travelling the land with a message.

San Giovanni was born in Capestrano to a local mother and father from German nobility. Assailants murdered the saint's family and burnt their home. San Giovanni then studied in Perugia, becoming a lawyer who worked for the kingdom of Naples. He was imprisoned after the Malatesta conquest and converted in prison. His eventful life included extensive travels through Italy and Europe. He was a practicing priest in the Netherlands, France, Austria, and Romania, and ended his life in Hungary shortly after the defeat of the Turkish army in Belgrade. He is remembered as the Apostle of a united Europe. In a land defined by "Saints and Warriors," St. John of Capestrano is undoubtedly the ultimate synthesis of the two.

The Promised Land

From one land to another.

Edward Corsi, originally from Capestrano, brings to life the story of millions of emigrants in his book In the Shadow of Liberty, published in 1935. In 1909, as a boy, Corsi and his mother left Capestrano for the United States. As did millions of immigrants before him, Corsi passed through Ellis Island, where fellow travelers were procesed and subjected to humiliating health checks in the shadow of New York City. In 1931, the same Edward Corsi, after many years of hardship, was appointed by United States president Herbert Hoover as Commissioner of Immigration at Ellis Island. Throughout his life, Corsi continued to be a powerful advocate for immigrants and Italian-Americans. His career of service in the United States earned him the title of Knight of the Italian Republic.