It is a mountain village, characterized by an aggregation of houses perched on a high spur of the Lucanian Apennines that cling to each other as if to force to stand before the disarming beauty of nature that surrounds them.
It was also born on the slopes of Cozzo Pastano and overlooks the Mercure Valley. As Castelluccio Inferiore, is part of the Pollino National Park.
There are several theories concerning the origins of the municipality. Many historians trace the birth of this village to the ruins of the city of “Tebe Lucana”, built by Osci. Others, however, date back to the pre-Roman and Roman city, “Nerulum”.
Its name, however, derives from the name of a Lucanian captain, Lucio, who supervised the castle built by the Sanseverinos: “Castel di Lucio” and then “Castelluccio”.
It was only with the end of feudalism that in 1813 the village conquered its autonomy.
CULTURAL AND ARTISTIC HERITAGE
Remarkable artistic expression of the village, especially considering the added value given by the geographical position to the rich heritage that the passage of history has left. Historic buildings, archaeological finds and rural churches acquire a unique charm if combined with the breathtaking view on which they overlook: the Mercure Valley surrounded by beech and oak woods that cast different colours on the village, along with the passage of small animals that inhabit those marvellous green corners.
There are many chapels in the village including the mother church of Santa Margherita di Antiochia, dating back to the late 1500s. Here you can admire the wooden statue of the Saint, placed in a specific niche, a precious painting of 1580 depicting the Eternal Father by Antonio Stabile and an 18th century fresco, “Decapitation of John the Baptist”.
Remarkable is the bell tower that rises towards the sky, with its square base, a polychrome tiled roof and various Gothic elements.
Leaving the village another bell tower captures the attention of passers-by for its height and the roof polychrome: it is the one of the church of Santa Maria di Loreto, built at the end of the 16th century. And finally, at high altitude, exactly at 1103 meters,there is the Sanctuary of the Madonna del Soccorso, a welcoming, small but neat structure, preceded by a gentle stairway that ends in front of the three arches that adorn the façade of the church. Of medieval structure and accompanied, like the others, by a bell tower with characteristic colored tiles, it suggests peace and serenity, thanks to the vegetation that offers a bucolic background.
A few steps from the Sanctuary it is possible to admire the ruins of an ancient urban settlement from the 4th century BC.
FOOD AND WINE
Among the typical flavors of Castelluccio Superiore, in addition to home-made pasta, a must-eat in almost all the towns of Basilicata, it is certainly not missing the grilled sausage, the so-called “nuglia” and the various cold cuts. Then we find agnello (lamb) alla contadina, flavored with tomatoes, parsley, onion and sage, agnello saporito and the baccalà a ciaruedda, cooked with fried onion, tomatoes, garlic and various herbs.
The range of desserts is wide. From blood pudding to fried cakes filled with chestnuts called “chinuliddr”, from carnival fritters known as “crispeddr” to “cannarichl” and “rosette”, prepared with fried shortcrust pastry, to the tasty “picciddrat”, a particular type of bread based on eggs and sugar. A sparkling of delicacy and delight.