|Comune di Valmontone|
Coat of arms
Location of Valmontone in Italy
|Metropolitan city||Rome (RM)|
|• Mayor||Alberto Latini (Democratic Party)|
|• Total||40.91 km2 (15.80 sq mi)|
|Elevation||303 m (994 ft)|
(30 November 2017)
|• Density||390/km2 (1,000/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+1 (CET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+2 (CEST)|
|Patron saint||St. Luigi Gonzaga|
|Saint day||June 21|
The historic part of the town is situated on a tuffaceous hill, 303 metres (994 feet) above sea level, part of a morphological system of valleys and low relieves, known as Alta Valle del Sacco (High Valley of Sacco River). There are many natural springs due to the high water levels underground. Because of this the landscape is covered by forest and farmland.
To preserve this water system, in Valmontone exists the C.E.R.I., a center for the prevention and control of hydro-geological risks.
The origins of Valmontone are uncertain: it seems that a village was founded before the rise of Rome on a hill in the modern municipality of the town, and its ruins were visible until the 18th century. Perhaps these are the remains of the ancient Labicum, which, according to the myth, was founded by Glaucus, Minos’ son: the name of the village derives from a kind of Greek shield. Labicum was in war against Rome, but at last it was defeated and became a Roman castrum, a fortified castle: other testimonies of the Roman period are the post-station Ad Bivium, situated along the road called Via Latina, a village of coal-makers, some furnaces for tiles and vases, a villa and some other remains (two sarcophagus, memorial plates).
Later on, the castle was rebuilt on the actual site in the Late Roman Empire. The presence of a Castrum Lateranense goes back to the 1052, while the name of Vallis Montonis (Valmontone means “a valley overhung by a little hill”) appears the first time in a document dated 1139. Valmontone became a fief under the Conti family until the 16th century, when, in 1548, the fief passed under the Sforza then, in 1632 and for a few years, under the Barberini, until Camillo Pamphili bought Valmontone (1634). The Pamphili family became Doria-Pamphili-Landi in the 18th century. In 1843 Valmontone assumed the rank of “city” by decision of Pope Gregory XVI.
On 22 January 1944, during the Italian Campaign of the Second World War, the Allies commenced Operation Shingle, an amphibious landing at Anzio in an attempt to outflank the formidable German defensive positions known as the Winter Line (also Gustave Line) and push toward Rome: Valmontone was an important objective on the way to Rome, in according to Operation Buffalo, May–June 1944. The Allies thought the German forces were garrisoning the city, so they bombed Valmontone with their air forces, nearly destroying it completely: Valmontone lost 80 percent of its ancient buildings, like the fortified gates, the monastery on Colle Sant’Angelo, fountains, churches. With the post-war reconstruction the town lost its medieval and baroque appeal, of which only a few sights survive.
Not far from Valmontone is the large Valmontone Outlet, a shopping center built like an American town, with squares, buildings, streets, a fake train-station, etc. Near this complex is Rainbow Magic Land, opened on 26 May 2011.
The town is crossed by via Casilina, a modern road following the ancient road with the same name built by the Romans, now the town's main street: moreover it is connected with the Autostrada A1 (Autostrada del Sole), on the Roma-Napoli branch (exit to Valmontone).
Valmontone has a railway station, served by the line Rome-Cassino-Naples.
Valmontone is twinned with:
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