The Regions of Apulia and Calabria  

 

Introduction

  

As with most parts of southern Italy, the region had been settled by Achaeans, Cretans, Spartans and occupied by Romans, by Gothic German tribes, by the Byzantines, Saracens, Normans, Swabians, French, Germans, Spaniards, the Savoia, Austrians and others.
The artifacts present all over Puglia and Calabria are evidence of the people that lived in the region. Greek ruins, Roman roads, aqueducts, amphitheaters, the Romanic and Gothic cathedrals, the Norman Castles, the numerous churches and old and contemporary structures are marks of their passage and influence.
Going back in time, over 500,000 years, the first traces of human presence in the Italian peninsula are to be found in the regions today called Calabria and Apulia.
The many populations that colonized this territory before the Bronze Age, which ended in the XII century BC, and in more recent times, referred to this region with different names:
Enotria-land of wine, Opicia- land of the abundance, Ausonia- the land colonized by Auson, son of Odysseus, Tauronia- land of the cattle.
It was also called Brezia- the land of the Bretti, by the Oscan speaking population that occupied the central part of Italy.
In the Iron Age, this area was completely dominated by the Osci, who called this region Italia, a contraction of the Oscan “Vitelieu”, the land of young cattle.
The regions of Apulia, La Puglia, and Calabria are located at the boot of the Italian peninsula.
The Greeks colonized it, made this land their second homeland and called it Magna Grecia meaning “the Great Greece”.