A few kilometers away from the Tyrrhenian coast, Nocera Terinese is a town in the province of Catanzaro, located at North of the Gulf of St. Eufemia. The traces of fortified walls of the Hellenic period and the remains of a Roman aqueduct evidence the ancient origins of this village, heir of Noukria, a town founded by the survivors of Terina, a Greek colony destroyed by Hannibal in 203 B.C.
The town, however, has prehistoric origins: from archaeological excavations, conducted by Paolo Orsi in 1913/1914, in the district of Grotticelle, were unearthed polished stone axes of the Neolithic Age.
After the Battle of Cannae (216 B.C.) the center was destroyed by Hannibal, later it became part of the Roman Empire and in 960 it was totally destroyed by the Saracens. The survivors sheltered in a secret area, not far from the sea, between Mount Eliceto and the Destro, at the confluence of two rivers Grande and Rivale. Here arose a "Castrum", that with the increase of the population became "Oppidum. In the Middle Ages it suffered the domain of Normans, Spanish, French and the Bourbon restoration.
Sites of Interest:
- the Church of St. John the Baptist, around which develops the village with its dense network of roads. The building's origins are uncertain, but it has submitted renovations and additions following the earthquakes of 1638 and 1783. The façade features a late Renaissance portal in tuff stone, with a niche where is placed a XVI century statue depicting the patron Saint to whom the church is entitled. The vault was frescoed by the artist Colelli, while the stucco decorations are of Pietro Joele;
- the Church of the Annunciation, which features a single nave plan with an attached chapel. Inside it preserves a lovely green marble altar, built in 1699, on which is placed a XVII century wooden group statue of the Neapolitan school;
- the Church of St. Francis of Assisi, founded in the XV century by the Franciscan friars. The building features a classic single nave plan, with a tuff stone portal and coffered ceilings;
- the Chapel of St. Anthony, built in 1595;
- the district of Motta, the oldest part of the town, in which are still visible the XVI century gateway and the Church of Santa Maria della Motta, with its XVII century portal in decorated stone.