History

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Palermo dates back to the 6th and 8th century. Initially, it was known as a Phoenician colony then later on, it became a Carthaginian colony. For this reasons it was considered a prize was getting. Through the centuries, it has undergone a lot of developments. During the Saracen and Norman rule, it was known as the Panormus harbor which translates to All Harbor. This was during the 9th to the 12th century and it was also during this time span that Palermo came to be known as the most prosperous and large city in the whole of Europe. This fame was largely attributed to the wealth of court as well as the expansive centers of learning.

The very first settlements were of prehistoric origins and for this reason; it is rankled among the ancient places in Sicily. As a matter of fact, the very first painting was discovered in 1953 in grottoes of Addaura. Also, the first origin of people believed to occupy the city is the Matebei who come from Jordan. There is an official document which states that the Phoenician was responsible for establishing the merchant colony. This dates back to the period between 734 B.C. On the other hand, the Greeks are believed to have colonized Sicily in the period between VII and VIII B.C. It was later on when the Punic war was going on that the Carthaginians conquered Palermo and gave it the name Panourmus before it was taking over by the Romans.

It was during the Roman rule that the city flourished and was known to be a major supplier for Rome. Until sometime in the year 831, the city was under the Byzantines. After this period however, it was captured by the Arabs making it Sicily’s capital as well as the most revered Islamic cities in the entire Mediterranean region. It was also during this time that it was ranked among the great cities in Europe. This was attributed to the fact that it had a flourishing culture, education as well as trade.

During 1072, the Normans came on the scene and this ended the Arab reign. It was the Normans who restored Christianity in the city as they highlighted it as the official religion. In addition to this, they are responsible for declaring it as the islands capital. While this is the case, it is important to state that a trace of cosmopolitanism was established and as such, the Jewish and Muslims were able to co-exist in harmony. When Henry VI and Norman Constance got married, this marked the end of the Normans reign and from that point, it was under the German house of Swabia. Later on, it was made part of the Roman Empire.

From that point on, it changed hands a couple of times from the Anjou, to the Aragons and to the Bourbons. It was after the Bourbons decree that autonomy ought to be granted that Sicily rose up. This was during 1820 and 1848. However, it was not until 1860 that Garibaldi got to Marsala and Palermo managed to attain its freedom. Later on in 1870, Palermo was able to annex itself as part of the Italy Kingdom.

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