Nec sine MARSIS nec contra Marsos triumphari posse (Latin)

You cannot win either without the Marsi or against the Marsi (Italian)

The term ‘Scurcola derives from the Lombard language, and means ‘watchtower’.

The first traces of a settlement in the Scurcolano territory date back to the Bronze Age and later the Iron Age, as evidenced by the remains of the necropolis, located near the river Imele-Salto. So it is certain that there was a village located at the top of Mount St. Nicholas.

In pre-Roman times the area was populated by the eque people, in constant conflict with the neighboring Marsi.  When Rome emerged between the Latin city-states, to rise to the leadership of the Italic peoples, they collided with the Equi which subdued in several military campaigns; in the Equo territory, confining with Marsica, the colony of Alba Fucens was created. The territory of Scurcola was inserted in the ‘Centuriazione albense’, made following the establishment of the Latin colony of Alba Fucens.

During the Social War, which Rome fought with its Italian allies (89-91 BC), the subject populations for centuries did not rebel Urbe (Equi), then suffering the ravages by the troops Marse arisen (and siege destruction of Alba Fucens). During the imperial era, and especially in the late empire, there was a proliferation of country villas, consequently the abandonment of the City by the privileged classes. With the fall of the Western Roman Empire, the area was first subject to the fights between the Goths and Byzantines and then subject to the Lombards in the Duchy of Spoleto, then passed to the Holy Roman Empire of Charlemagne. To this period belong some traces of a village on Mount St. Nicholas; it was probably almost a guard post on the Via Valeria, made built in Roman times and still viable.

In the eleventh century the land area of ​​Scurcola was annexed to the Kingdom of Sicily under Norman rule. From this period dates the first phase of the fortification of the castle of Scurcola, a tower (perhaps of more ancient times) surrounded by a circle of walls. Then with successive buildings and thirteenth respectively in fourteenth and fifteenth century, the primary construction was included in a pentagonal fortification in fact transforming the fortification from medieval castle in Rocca Renaissance (the ‘completion is attributed to the famous architect Francesco di Giorgio Martini).

When the South of Italy became a possession of the House Swabian region enjoyed a period of stability and economic growth; the village near the fort was enlarged and developed agricultural activities and crafts.
On a slope that goes from the castle to the Via Valeria village it has developed in later periods in different stages, well marked by fences still visible today. The first dates back to the twelfth century XII included the space below the castle in a triangular shape.
L ‘expansion of the village on the slope at the end of two hundred more than the first fence by creating a new form of diamond which are initially open two doors d’ access a north-east and the other northwest.
E ‘in the Renaissance the second half of the fifteenth century until the early XVI that the village has the third phase of expansion down almost reached the floor. The building of the village ends in the sixteenth century with the fourth fence delineated by two doors destroyed now placed at the Western entrance and at the exit east of the village.
The castle with its unique shape, palaces, courtyards, portals testify the uniqueness of ‘building up in four different phases by the village of Scurcola an architectural site of great historical importance.