Located in the center of Catanzaro province, on Corace valley, 18 km to the NW of Calabria main city: divided into two main areas oriented NNE direction and placed almost on the same axis, but at different altitudes. Gimigliano Inferiore is indeed at an altitude of 509 meters, while Gimigliano Superiore, which also has the most conspicuous size, is at an altitude of 618 m.
Both are located on Gimigliano mountain ridges and constitute a single municipality with about 3400 inhabitants and an area of ​​32.44 square kilometers within the boundaries delimited by Soveria Mannelli, Carlopoli, Cicala, San Pietro Apostolo, Tiriolo, Sorbo, Fossato Serralta, Pentone and Catanzaro. Excluding few flat areas, the land is mountainous and rises to an average altitude of 500-600 m with peaks reaching 900 m. This quality of mountain area realize the myriad of waterways that feed rivers Corace, Melito and Fiumarella. The Melito ends its course in Corace, a few kilometers south of the village of Gimigliano Inferiore, while the other two continue to Catanzaro. The climate and the abundance of water in fact allow any type of cultivation, even with the production limitations imposed by the fragmentation of croplands and difficulties of use of large agricultural machinery. The territory is mineralogically rich; along the Corace are marble rocks , with colors from red to green. The white veins of quartz and calcite give the stone a decorative value which is exalted above all in the green one, the so-called “pietra verde Gimigliano“, more generally known as “verde Calabria”.

Further south, the Corace affects black rocks or pink for the presence of quartz, or pink-red brick for feld-spar.

A Gimigliano was also the soapstone, used for small containers: inkwells, vases, pots. Attested is the presence of porphyry, asbestos, talc, steatite, as well as alum and vitriol. Upstream of Fosso Patia there are still pyrite mines, abandoned in 1949 because less productive; from the same period it has ceased all activity of marble extraction. Depending on the type of settlement, the foundation of Gimigliano ranks last period of Byzantine urban buildings. A tradition upheld by the local historian Lamannis, said that the area converged in 864 AD inhabitants of Palepoli (Scolacium), destroyed by the Saracens. These were distributed in thirty villages in 967, by Mandate of Niceforo Foca began to congregate and finally formed the two villages present in 983 AD The place was inhabited from the Neolithic and artifacts have been found along the Corace until Cicala and Carlopoli. A large demic presence was realized in Roman times with the birth around the II-III century AD of rustic funds living with cultivation (areas of Chianetta, Porto, Melito), breeding and exploitation of the forest. The hypothesis supported by the discovery of some Roman tombs of the late period (II-IV AD) in the area of Grisello. The name of the town reminds to Latin origins: infact Gimigliano means “possession of Gemellius” since Gemellius or Geminius names are mainly certificated in Latin onomastica.

The above text is signed by Dr Sandro Calogero whom we thank.

Pictures and images in this section are kindly donated by Giovanni Donato and his group “Angoli di Gimigliano” that you may find at following link.