Piccola Cuba

Second half of 12th century

    This small domed pavilion (an annexe of the old pre-Norman palace of the Cuba Soprana) stands in the vestiges of a once wonderful Arab-Norman garden. The "Piccola Cuba"  is the only survivor of the many which once graced the avenues and lakes of the Norman parks of Sicily. In structure it follows the model of contemporary Norman-Byzantine churches, the dome supported on a square structure of four arches with splayed niches in each of the corners. The decoration of the recessed arched lintels is similar to that found in a number of late-12th-century churches in Palermo. In the 19th century, the workmanship aroused the interest of several European archaeologists and travellers, who made some fine engravings of these features (see G. De Prangey, etc.).

Vittorio Noto

G. Caronia -V. Noto, "La Cuba di Palermo, Arabi e Normanni nel XII sec.", Palermo, 1988

Melo Minnella