Crotone is a city and comune
In Italy, the comune is the basic administrative division, and may be properly approximated in casual speech by the English word township or municipality.-Importance and function:...

in Calabria
Calabria , in antiquity known as Bruttium, is a region in southern Italy, south of Naples, located at the "toe" of the Italian Peninsula. The capital city of Calabria is Catanzaro....

, southern Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

, on the Ionian Sea
Ionian Sea
The Ionian Sea , is an arm of the Mediterranean Sea, south of the Adriatic Sea. It is bounded by southern Italy including Calabria, Sicily and the Salento peninsula to the west, southern Albania to the north, and a large number of Greek islands, including Corfu, Zante, Kephalonia, Ithaka, and...

. Founded circa 710 BC as the Achaea
Achaea is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the region of West Greece. It is situated in the northwestern part of the Peloponnese peninsula. The capital is Patras. The population exceeds 300,000 since 2001.-Geography:...

n colony of Croton , it was known as Cotrone from the Middle Ages
Middle Ages
The Middle Ages is a periodization of European history from the 5th century to the 15th century. The Middle Ages follows the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 and precedes the Early Modern Era. It is the middle period of a three-period division of Western history: Classic, Medieval and Modern...

 until 1928, when its name was changed to the current one. In 1994 it became the capital of the newly established Province of Crotone
Province of Crotone
The Province of Crotone is a province in the Calabria region of Italy. It was created in 1996 out of part of the Province of Catanzaro. The capital is the city of Crotone.It has an area of 1,717 km², and a total population of 172,970...

. As of July 2007, its population was 61,032.


Croton's oekist (founder) was Myscellus who came from the city of Rhypes
Rhypes was one of the twelve cities of Achaia, situated between Aegium and Patrae. It was destroyed by Augustus, and its inhabitants removed to Patrae ....

 in Achaea
Achaea (ancient region)
Geographically, Achaea was the northernmost region of the Peloponnese, occupying the coastal strip north of Arcadia. Its approximate boundaries were to the south the mountain range of Erymanthus, to the south-east the range of Cyllene, to the east Sicyon, and to the west the Larissos river...

 in the northern Peloponnese. He established the city in c.710 BC and it soon became one of the most flourishing cities of Magna Graecia
Magna Graecia
Magna Græcia is the name of the coastal areas of Southern Italy on the Tarentine Gulf that were extensively colonized by Greek settlers; particularly the Achaean colonies of Tarentum, Crotone, and Sybaris, but also, more loosely, the cities of Cumae and Neapolis to the north...

. Its inhabitants were famous for their physical strength and for the simple sobriety of their lives. From 588 BCE onwards, Croton produced many generations of victors in the Olympics and the other Panhellenic Games
Panhellenic Games
Panhellenic Games is the collective term for four separate sports festivals held in ancient Greece. The four Games were:-Description:The Games took place in a four-year cycle known as the Olympiad, which was one of the ways the Greeks measured time...

, the most famous of whom was Milo of Croton
Milo of Croton
Milo of Croton was a 6th century BC wrestler from the Magna Graecian city of Croton in southern Italy who enjoyed a brilliant wrestling career and won many victories in the most important athletic festivals of ancient Greece...

. According to Herodotus
Herodotus was an ancient Greek historian who was born in Halicarnassus, Caria and lived in the 5th century BC . He has been called the "Father of History", and was the first historian known to collect his materials systematically, test their accuracy to a certain extent and arrange them in a...

 (3.131), the physicians of Croton were considered the foremost among the Greeks, among which Democedes son of Calliphon was the most prominent in the 6th century BCE Accordingly, he traveled around Greece and ended up working in the court of Polycrates, tyrant of Samos. After the tyrant was murdered, he was captured by the Persians and brought to King Darius, curing him of a dislocated ankle. Democedes fame was, according to Herodotus, the one who prompted the prestige of Croton's physicians. Pythagoras
Pythagoras of Samos was an Ionian Greek philosopher, mathematician, and founder of the religious movement called Pythagoreanism. Most of the information about Pythagoras was written down centuries after he lived, so very little reliable information is known about him...

 founded his school, the Pythagoreans
Pythagoreanism was the system of esoteric and metaphysical beliefs held by Pythagoras and his followers, the Pythagoreans, who were considerably influenced by mathematics. Pythagoreanism originated in the 5th century BCE and greatly influenced Platonism...

, at Croton circa 530 BCE. Among his pupils were the early medical theorist Alcmaeon of Croton
Alcmaeon of Croton
Alcmaeon of Croton was one of the most eminent natural philosophers and medical theorists of antiquity. His father's name was Peirithus . He is said by some to have been a pupil of Pythagoras, and he may have been born around 510 BC...

 and the philosopher, mathematician, and astronomer Philolaus
Philolaus was a Greek Pythagorean and Presocratic philosopher. He argued that all matter is composed of limiting and limitless things, and that the universe is determined by numbers. He is credited with originating the theory that the earth was not the center of the universe.-Life:Philolaus is...

. The Pythagoreans acquired considerable influence with the supreme council of one thousand by which the city was ruled. Sybaris
Sybaris was an ancient city in Magna Graecia on the western shore of the Gulf of Taranto. The wealth of the city during the 6th century BC was so great that the Sybarites became synonymous with pleasure and luxury...

 was the rival of Croton until 510 BCE, when Croton sent an army of one hundred thousand men, commanded by the wrestler Milo, against Sybaris and destroyed it. Shortly afterwards, however, an insurrection took place, by which the Pythagoreans were driven out and a democracy established.

In 480 BCE, Croton sent a ship in support of the Greeks at the Battle of Salamis
Battle of Salamis
The Battle of Salamis was fought between an Alliance of Greek city-states and the Persian Empire in September 480 BCE, in the straits between the mainland and Salamis, an island in the Saronic Gulf near Athens...

 (Herodotus 8.47), but the victory of Locri
Locri is a town and comune in the province of Reggio Calabria, Calabria, southern Italy. The name derives from the ancient Greek town Locris.-History:...

 and Rhegium
Reggio Calabria
Reggio di Calabria , commonly known as Reggio Calabria or Reggio, is the biggest city and the most populated comune of Calabria, southern Italy, and is the capital of the Province of Reggio Calabria and seat of the Council of Calabrian government.Reggio is located on the "toe" of the Italian...

 over Croton in the same year marked the beginning of its decline. It was replaced by Heraclea
Heraclea (Lucania)
Heraclea was an ancient city of Magna Graecia, situated in Lucania on the Gulf of Tarentum , but a short distance from the sea, and between the rivers Aciris and Siris , the site of which is located in the modern comune of Policoro, Province of Matera, Basilicata,...

 as headquarters of the Italiote League
The Italiotes were the pre-Roman Greek-speaking inhabitants of the Italian Peninsula, between Naples and Sicily.Greek colonization of the coastal areas of southern Italy and Sicily started in the 8th century BC and, by the time of Roman ascendance, the area was so extensively hellenized that...

. Dionysius
Dionysius I of Syracuse
Dionysius I or Dionysius the Elder was a Greek tyrant of Syracuse, in what is now Sicily, southern Italy. He conquered several cities in Sicily and southern Italy, opposed Carthage's influence in Sicily and made Syracuse the most powerful of the Western Greek colonies...

, the tyrant of Syracuse
Syracuse, Italy
Syracuse is a historic city in Sicily, the capital of the province of Syracuse. The city is notable for its rich Greek history, culture, amphitheatres, architecture, and as the birthplace of the preeminent mathematician and engineer Archimedes. This 2,700-year-old city played a key role in...

, aiming at hegemony in Magna Graecia, captured Croton in 379 BC and held it for twelve years. Croton was then occupied by the Bruttii
The Bruttii , were an ancient Italic people who inhabited the southern extremity of Italy, from the frontiers of Lucania to the Sicilian Straits and the promontory of Leucopetra, roughly corresponding to modern Calabria.-History:...

, with the exception of the citadel, in which the chief inhabitants had taken refuge; these soon after surrendered, and were allowed to withdraw to Locri.

In 295 BCE, Croton fell to another Syracusan tyrant, Agathocles
Agathocles , , was tyrant of Syracuse and king of Sicily .-Biography:...

. When Pyrrhus
Pyrrhus of Epirus
Pyrrhus or Pyrrhos was a Greek general and statesman of the Hellenistic era. He was king of the Greek tribe of Molossians, of the royal Aeacid house , and later he became king of Epirus and Macedon . He was one of the strongest opponents of early Rome...

 invaded Italy (280-278, 275 BCE), Croton was still a considerable city, with twelve miles of walls, but after the Pyrrhic War
Pyrrhic War
The Pyrrhic War was a complex series of battles and shifting political alliances among the Greeks , Romans, the Italian peoples , and the CarthaginiansThe Pyrrhic War initially started as a minor conflict between Rome and the city of Tarentum over a naval...

, half the city was deserted (Livy 24.3). What was left of its population submitted to Rome
Roman Republic
The Roman Republic was the period of the ancient Roman civilization where the government operated as a republic. It began with the overthrow of the Roman monarchy, traditionally dated around 508 BC, and its replacement by a government headed by two consuls, elected annually by the citizens and...

 in 277 BC. After the Battle of Cannae
Battle of Cannae
The Battle of Cannae was a major battle of the Second Punic War, which took place on August 2, 216 BC near the town of Cannae in Apulia in southeast Italy. The army of Carthage under Hannibal decisively defeated a numerically superior army of the Roman Republic under command of the consuls Lucius...

 in the Second Punic War
Second Punic War
The Second Punic War, also referred to as The Hannibalic War and The War Against Hannibal, lasted from 218 to 201 BC and involved combatants in the western and eastern Mediterranean. This was the second major war between Carthage and the Roman Republic, with the participation of the Berbers on...

 (216 BC), Croton revolted from Rome, and Hannibal made it his winter quarters for three years; it was not recaptured until 205 or 204 BCE. In 194 BCE, it became the site of a Roman colony. Little more is heard of it during the Republican and Imperial
Roman Empire
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican period of the ancient Roman civilization, characterised by an autocratic form of government and large territorial holdings in Europe and around the Mediterranean....

 periods, though the action of one of the more significant surviving fragments of the Satyricon
Satyricon is a Latin work of fiction in a mixture of prose and poetry. It is believed to have been written by Gaius Petronius, though the manuscript tradition identifies the author as a certain Titus Petronius...

 of Petronius
Gaius Petronius Arbiter was a Roman courtier during the reign of Nero. He is generally believed to be the author of the Satyricon, a satirical novel believed to have been written during the Neronian age.-Life:...

 is set in Croton.

Around 550, the city was unsuccessfully besieged by Totila
Totila, original name Baduila was King of the Ostrogoths from 541 to 552 AD. A skilled military and political leader, Totila reversed the tide of Gothic War, recovering by 543 almost all the territories in Italy that the Eastern Roman Empire had captured from his Kingdom in 540.A relative of...

, king of the Ostrogoths. At a later date it became a part of the Byzantine Empire
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

. About 870 it was sacked by the Saracen
Saracen was a term used by the ancient Romans to refer to a people who lived in desert areas in and around the Roman province of Arabia, and who were distinguished from Arabs. In Europe during the Middle Ages the term was expanded to include Arabs, and then all who professed the religion of Islam...

s, who put to death the bishop and many people who had taken refuge in the cathedral but were not able to occupy the city. Over a hundred years later, Otto II, Holy Roman Emperor
Otto II, Holy Roman Emperor
Otto II , called the Red, was the third ruler of the Saxon or Ottonian dynasty, the son of Otto the Great and Adelaide of Italy.-Early years and co-ruler with Otto I:...

, mounted a campaign in southern Italy to reduce the power of the Byzantines. Later on Cotrone was conquered by the Normans
The Normans were the people who gave their name to Normandy, a region in northern France. They were descended from Norse Viking conquerors of the territory and the native population of Frankish and Gallo-Roman stock...

. Thereafter it shared the fate of the Kingdom of Naples
Kingdom of Naples
The Kingdom of Naples, comprising the southern part of the Italian peninsula, was the remainder of the old Kingdom of Sicily after secession of the island of Sicily as a result of the Sicilian Vespers rebellion of 1282. Known to contemporaries as the Kingdom of Sicily, it is dubbed Kingdom of...

—including the period of Spanish rule of which the 16th-century castle of Charles V
Charles V, Holy Roman Emperor
Charles V was ruler of the Holy Roman Empire from 1519 and, as Charles I, of the Spanish Empire from 1516 until his voluntary retirement and abdication in favor of his younger brother Ferdinand I and his son Philip II in 1556.As...

, overlooking modern Crotone, serves as a reminder—and its successor, the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, which was conquered by the Kingdom of Sardinia
Kingdom of Sardinia
The Kingdom of Sardinia consisted of the island of Sardinia first as a part of the Crown of Aragon and subsequently the Spanish Empire , and second as a part of the composite state of the House of Savoy . Its capital was originally Cagliari, in the south of the island, and later Turin, on the...

 in 1860 and incorporated into the new Kingdom of Italy in 1861.

Crotone's location between the ports of Taranto
Taranto is a coastal city in Apulia, Southern Italy. It is the capital of the Province of Taranto and is an important commercial port as well as the main Italian naval base....

 and Messina, as well as its proximity to a source of hydroelectric power, favored industrial development during the period between the two World Wars. In the 1930s its population doubled. However, after the two main employers, Pertusola Sud and Montedison, collapsed by the late 1980s, Crotone was in economic crisis, with many residents losing their jobs and leaving to find work elsewhere. In 1996, a flood dealt a further blow to the city's morale. Since that low point, the city has undergone urban renewal and risen in quality-of-life rankings.

Main sights

  • The Cathedral, originally from the 9th-11th century, but largely rebuilt. It has a neo-classical façade, while the interior has a nave with two aisles, with Baroque decorations. Noteworthy are a baptismal font (12th century) and the Madonna di Capo Colonna, the icon of the Black Madonna which, according to the tradition, was brought from East in the first years of the Christian era.
  • The 16th century Castle of Charles V. It houses the Town Museum, with findings excavated in the ancient site of Kroton. Notables are also the remnants of the walls, of the same century, and of various watchtowers.
  • The ancient castle built on an island, with accessibility on foot limited to a narrow strip of land, is referred to as Le Castella.


Crotone Airport
Crotone Airport
Crotone Airport or Sant'Anna Airport is an airport serving Crotone, in the Calabria Region of Italy.-Airlines and destinations:-External links:**...

 (Sant'Anna Airport) is served by and other charter airlines. Crotone also has a railway station, although much of the tourism traffic is served by the Salerno-Reggio Calabria highway and the National Road (called 106 Ionica) leading all the Jonic (eastern) coast from Taranto
Taranto is a coastal city in Apulia, Southern Italy. It is the capital of the Province of Taranto and is an important commercial port as well as the main Italian naval base....

 to Reggio Calabria
Reggio Calabria
Reggio di Calabria , commonly known as Reggio Calabria or Reggio, is the biggest city and the most populated comune of Calabria, southern Italy, and is the capital of the Province of Reggio Calabria and seat of the Council of Calabrian government.Reggio is located on the "toe" of the Italian...

In recent time Crotone Port has been used by visitors on yacht charter
Yacht charter
Yacht chartering is the practice of renting, or chartering, a sailboat or motor yacht and travelling to various coastal or island destinations. This is usually a vacation activity, but it also can be a corporate event....

 cruising vacations.


Crotone hosts a national archaeological museum, a municipal museum, a municipal art gallery, and a provincial museum of contemporary art, as well as the Antiquarium di Torre Nao.

Notable people

  • Milo
    Milo of Croton
    Milo of Croton was a 6th century BC wrestler from the Magna Graecian city of Croton in southern Italy who enjoyed a brilliant wrestling career and won many victories in the most important athletic festivals of ancient Greece...

     (6th century BC) Greek athlete
  • Astylos
    Astylos of Croton
    Astylos of Croton was an athlete from ancient Greece that starred in the ancient Olympics of the 5th century BC...

     (5th century BC) Greek athlete
  • Vincenzo Scaramuzza
    Vincenzo Scaramuzza
    Vincenzo Scaramuzza -in spanish: Vicente Scaramuzza- was an Italian Argentine pianist and music teacher.Scaramuzza was born in Crotone, Italy, on June 19, 1885. Introduced to the piano by his father, Francesco, he was a concert performer by age seven, and enrolled in the prestigious San Pietro a...

    , (born in Crotone in 1885) pianist and music teacher
  • Rino Gaetano
    Rino Gaetano
    Salvatore Antonio "Rino" Gaetano , was an Italian singer-songwriter.-Biography:Rino Gaetano was born in Crotone, in the southern Italian region of Calabria...

    , singer, born in Crotone
  • Sergio Cammariere
    Sergio Cammariere
    Sergio Cammariere is an Italian jazz singer/songwriter. He has released six albums.-Career:After a long career as a niche musician distinguished by his collaboration with the poet and singer/songwriter Roberto Kunstler, in 2003 he appeared at the Sanremo Festival performing the song Tutto quello...

    , singer, born in Crotone
  • Pythagoras
    Pythagoras of Samos was an Ionian Greek philosopher, mathematician, and founder of the religious movement called Pythagoreanism. Most of the information about Pythagoras was written down centuries after he lived, so very little reliable information is known about him...

    , Mathematician and philosopher, lived in Crotone around 530 BC
  • Vincenzo Iaquinta
    Vincenzo Iaquinta
    Vincenzo Iaquinta, Ufficiale OMRI is an Italian World Cup-winning footballer who plays for Serie A club Juventus. He is a strong striker who can also play on the wing.-Reggiolo:...

    , footballer

Literary reference

Crotone is referenced to as Krotona in Florante at Laura
Florante at Laura
Florante at Laura by Francisco Baltazar is considered as one of the masterpieces of Philippine literature. Balagtas wrote the epic during his imprisonment. The work itself is dedicated to María Asuncion Rivera, his sweetheart, whom he nicknamed "M. A...

, a national epic
National epic
A national epic is an epic poem or a literary work of epic scope which seeks or is believed to capture and express the essence or spirit of a particular nation; not necessarily a nation-state, but at least an ethnic or linguistic group with aspirations to independence or autonomy...

 of the Philippines, as the place of origin of Princess Floresca, the mother of the male protagonist Duke Florante.

External links

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