Fortifications and castles


Castle of Castropignano
Tower of Oratino

Castle of

The D’Evoli castle controls the valley of the river Biferno near the intersection with the Ponte della Zittola-Lucera sheep-track. The control system is completed by the Oratino tower, which is perched on a rocky spur on the opposite side of the river. Founded at the time of the Longobards in the vicinity of Samnite ruins, it was later reorganised by the Normans. The castle, built on a rocky ridge, is located outside the town and was isolated from it by a ditch which was later filled in. The floor plan is four sided and articulated, though it has not yet been perfectly interpreted. It has been ascertained that it included a keep and a few towers, one located near the entrance and another overlooking the Biferno river. The residential rooms faced the valley, while the service areas and courtyard were arranged on the other sides exploiting the shape of the rock. The curtain wall, which displays a rich variety of construction solutions, was erected using calcareous stones set with great regularity. The wall overhangs the rock, which is occasionally cut into terraces or into a steep escarpment. There are frequent traces of putlog holes and housings for reinforcing wooden bars. The entrance was defended by a guardroom with two long arrow slits, while a crossbow slit was added later on the right of the entranceway.