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 In Marcellina’s territory there are lots of  archaeological remains, but these ruins give us the possibility to identify just approximately the manufactured products and the structures. Among these we notify a big complex of  terraced  buildings.

Towards the year 1000, several “castra” were built on the hills; these “castra” foundations had two different purposes: the laic and the ecclesiastic one. This situation led conflicts between the two powers. Among the “castra” we can mention Castrum Marcellini (“Castelluccio”), nearly completely destroyed (at Monteverde), Castrum Torrita, Castrum Monti Viridis, Castrum Saracinischi and others in neighbouring countries.

During the XI th   century the first decorative phase of the monastery of “Santa Maria in Monte Dominici”  started; it was built on the ancient structures of a Roman villa. The monastery reached its highest power in the XII th  century, when in 1153 Anastasio IV ‘s Papal bull confirmed a complex of landed property and 14 churches placed along a route from Marcellina to San Polo dei Cavalieri, till Poggio dei Ronci.

On  the inside walls of Santa Maria church there are some frescoes that belong to two different decorative phases: the first one, that corresponds to the splays of the windows, dates back to the XI th century; the second one is attributed to the ancient Byzantine of the Roman school and dates back to the first half of the XIII th century.

Above the altar there is an icon of the “Mother with Child”: some critics consider it belonging to Roman style. For the ornaments and other elements this Madonna reminds the Teodato’s  picture in Santa Maria Antiqua, the “Madonna dei Mosaici” by Giovanni VII and the  Madonna in Santa Maria in Trastevere, Rome.

The Romanesque style church tower  is divided by architraves with windows with two and three lights in overlapped orders, separated by a frame of bricks, on the four sides, put as saw-edged.

 Probably the name Marcellina comes from “Castrum Marcellinis”, Gregorio de Marcellinis’ estate. According to the tradition Castrum Marcellinis was destroyed by San Paolo  monks’ army. This fact caused the drift of a big number of people towards the monastery of Santa Maria. So, they formed the existing residential complex of Marcellina. This first community continued to live there till 1558. The whole territory and the ruined castle came back to Marcellinis who held their dominion until the end of the XV th century. The property was given the Orsini family by the monks of San Paolo; the fact became executive in 1429, when the monks gave up all the rights of their estates.

In 1558, under cardinal Cesi’s  family Marcellina stopped to be an independent  settlement; its territory was divided into four parts: Canale, Monteverde, Caolini and Turrita.

Later the whole area passed on to the Princes Borghese. However they never exercised their power and rights on the inhabitants and on the landowners.

Since 1700  new rules governed the administration of the small countries belonging to the Papal State.

In 1827 Marcellina became a San Polo dei Cavalieri’s hamlet and the two villages were members of Tivoli’s Government.

 15th July 1909: this is the date in which Marcellina obtained its independence as a self-governing municipality.

Since then Marcellina has the same coat of arms belonged to Marcellinis’ family. This represents a link of the present Marcellina with its past and history!!

Traslated by A.Antonini

Thank by Proloco for these first History  english-page

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