Augusta, Sicily

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Comune di Augusta
Augusta is located in Italy
Location of Augusta in Italy
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Country Italy
Region Sicily
Province / Metropolitan city Syracuse (SR)
Frazioni Brucoli
 • Mayor Massimo Carrubba (PD)
 • Total 109.33 km2 (42.21 sq mi)
Elevation 15 m (49 ft)
Population (31 December 2010[1])
 • Total 34,539
 • Density 320/km2 (820/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Augustani
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 96011
Dialing code 0931
Patron saint St. Dominic
Saint day May 24
Website Official website

Augusta (Sicilian: Austa, Greek and Latin: Megara Hyblaea, Medieval: Augusta and Agosta) is a town and comune in the province of Syracuse, located on the eastern coast of Sicily (Italy). The city is one of the main harbours in Italy, especially for oil refineries (Exxon Mobil) which are in its vicinity.


The city is situated in the province of Syracuse and faces the Ionian Sea. The old town is an island, made in the 16th century by cutting an isthmus and is connected to the mainland by two bridges. One bridge was built recently (Viaduct Frederick II of Swabia) and the other built when the city was founded and is called the Spanish Gate. Augusta is home to two ports.


Founded 27 centuries ago, Megara Hyblaea is one of the oldest Greek colonies of Sicily. It was destroyed by its rival Syracuse, was raised from its ruins, then taken by the Romans together with Syracuse during the Second Punic War. It remains an archaeological site, a testimony of the organization of a Greek colony of the Archaic period.

Upon the ruins of one of its suburbs, Xiphonia, the city of Augusta was founded in 1232 by Emperor Frederick II. After the Angevin domination, it became part of Aragonese Sicily and, from 1362, it was a fief of Guglielmo Raimondo II Moncada. It returned to be a royal possession (under Spain) in 1560, and was extensively fortified to counter Turkish pirates.

In 1675 its harbour was the site of a naval battle between the spanish and the english fleets. The town suffered a major earthquake and tsunami in 1693.[2] During World War II, Augusta was invaded on July 13, 1943 by the Eighth Army of the Allied troops led by the british General Montgomery.

Main sights

File:Augusta Kastell.jpg
Hohenstaufen Castle.
  • Church of San Domenico (13th century). The façade is in Neoclassical style.
  • Convent of the Domenican Fathers
  • Church of S. Francesco di Paola
  • Church of Cristo Re
  • Church of Mother Mary SS. Assunta (Augusta)
  • Church of Anime Sante del Purgatorio (S. Nicolò). The Baroque façade is attributed to Filippo Juvarra.
  • Chiesa del Carmine
  • Church of San Sebastiano
  • Church of Santa Maria del Soccorso
  • Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie
  • Church of San Giuseppe
  • Church of Maria Santissima del Soccorso
  • Church of Sant'Andrea
  • Church of Santa Lucia
  • Church of Sacro Cuore
  • Porta Spagnola
  • Castello Svevo (Hohenstaufen Castle, built c. 1232). It has a square plan of a 62-metre (203 ft) side length, with eight towers
  • Spanish Gate (17th century)
  • Hangar dirigibili Augusta
  • Kursaal Augusteo
  • Ricetta di Malta
  • Forti Garsia e Vittoria
  • Torre Avalos
  • Eremo Adonai



  1. Data from Istat
  2. Catalogue of tsunamis generated in Italy and in Cote d’Azur, France:a step towards a unified catalogue of tsunamis in Europe, Stefano Tinti and Alessandra Maramai - 1693 1 9 - Eastern Sicily Anomalous sea movement at Augusta and 1693 l 11 - Eastern Sicily Large sea withdrawal and flooding at Augusta

External links