This work reports the findings of an investigation by Etna’s local councils whose publicly owned land has high concentrations of particularly significant towers. The towers are original stone constructions, presumed to have been built between the end of the 1700s and the beginning of the 1900s and so are unrelated to medieval towers, emblems of ancient yet sophisticated building techniques and located in numerous agricultural areas on the slopes of Mount Etna, Europe’s most active volcano. They are built out of the stones removed from the agricultural land of the soils regenerated from the lava flows wedged in between basalt outcrops. Together with other stone artefacts, they form part of a renewable heritage of great value both for their recognised role in maintaining biodiversity as well as for their cultural, landscape and historical significance. These constructions are in a state of extreme abandonment or are gradually disappearing due to the loss of agriculture or the changeover of agricultural land into building sites. The enquiry used historical documents, censuses of tower characteristics and field data. Four council zones were identified and in each only clearly identifiable towers were considered (total: 19). The field data highlighted considerable architectural complexity in their proportions and construction techniques. Their historico-cultural-landscape validity was confirmed as was the necessity of appropriate and urgent state intervention.

Cultural Landscape: Stone Towers on Mount Etna.

RUSSO, PATRIZIA;
2013

Abstract

This work reports the findings of an investigation by Etna’s local councils whose publicly owned land has high concentrations of particularly significant towers. The towers are original stone constructions, presumed to have been built between the end of the 1700s and the beginning of the 1900s and so are unrelated to medieval towers, emblems of ancient yet sophisticated building techniques and located in numerous agricultural areas on the slopes of Mount Etna, Europe’s most active volcano. They are built out of the stones removed from the agricultural land of the soils regenerated from the lava flows wedged in between basalt outcrops. Together with other stone artefacts, they form part of a renewable heritage of great value both for their recognised role in maintaining biodiversity as well as for their cultural, landscape and historical significance. These constructions are in a state of extreme abandonment or are gradually disappearing due to the loss of agriculture or the changeover of agricultural land into building sites. The enquiry used historical documents, censuses of tower characteristics and field data. Four council zones were identified and in each only clearly identifiable towers were considered (total: 19). The field data highlighted considerable architectural complexity in their proportions and construction techniques. Their historico-cultural-landscape validity was confirmed as was the necessity of appropriate and urgent state intervention.
Peri-urban; environment planning; rural landscape
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11769/255121
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