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The Sassi of Matera

By Marty Way


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The place is reminiscent of Fred and Barney, but the citizens of Matera can’t be faulted for being cave dwellers. In the past 10,000 years or so, they’ve been ruled by Romans, Lombards, Arabs, Byzantines, Swabians, Angevins, Aragonese….and now Italians.IMG_6272

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The Sassi, a multi-tiered collection of dwellings about 380 meters high, cut or built into the limestone hillside was deemed uninhabitable in the 1950’s and the poverty-sticking residents were moved out. But the Sassi of Matera is having a renewal; a renaissance, if you will. Artists are establishing shops in the ancient caves. Visionaries are seeing potential for residential chic.IMG_6271

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Jona speculates that House Hunters International will soon feature a visionary who acquires a pile of rocks in Matera, with a damp cave in behind them. Then this cavern will transform into a home that radiates soft yellow light off of the limestone…onto the jubilant owner, making them look inspired… and an echo that makes them seem doubly clever. Stay tuned..

Posted by WayWayFar 17:11 Archived in Italy

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