The Municipality of Melito Irpino is located in the area of the Ufita Valley. It's a town with 1,870 inhabitants, located 450 metres above sea level, at 45 km from Avellino. The territory extends for 20.68 sq km and the adjoining municipalities are: Apice, Ariano Irpino, Bonito and Grottaminarda. It is crossed by the Ufita river.
The etymology of the name should derive from the Latin malus, meaning apple tree, to which the suffix -etum is added, or from Melae, an ancient Samnite city. Moreover, to distinguish the town from the other homonyms, the adjective "Irpino", identifying the area, has been added to the name. The inhabitants are called Melitesi and Saint Aegidius is their patron.
PLACES OF INTEREST
- Archeologic Melito - Located on the right bank of the Ufita river, it preserves finds of Roman-Samnite origin
- Castle ruins - Of Norman-Swabian origin, it represents the symbol of Melito Vecchia (Old Melito), destroyed by the 1962 earthquake
- Old church of Sant'Egidio (Saint Aegidius) - Adjacent to the Castle, it was abandoned following the seismic event of 1962
- New church of Sant'Egidio - Built after the 1962 earthquake, it stands in the new area of Melito Irpino
- Other - Church of Santissima Incoronata (Holy Mary the Crowned), Chapel of San Pio
- Melito Music Beer Festival - Food and wine and music event, scheduled during summer
- Feast of Saint Giles - Celebrations in honour of the patron saint, scheduled for September
- Feast of Saint Anne - Religious festival held in July
- Feast of Holy Mary the Crowned - Religious celebrations that take place in April
TYPICAL FOOD AND PRODUCTS
- San Giovanni apple PAT - Product with a greenish-yellow skin, characterized by a very fragrant, crunchy and juicy pulp
- Sant'Anna Pear PAT - Fruit with a delicious sugary flavour, yellow in colour, it has small red spots in the parts most exposed to the sun
- Irpinia Colline dell'Ufita PDO - Extra virgin olive oil deriving largely from the Ravece variety, characterized by a pleasant bitter and spicy taste
- Ufita garlic PAT - Product with an aromatic flavour characterized by a high quantity of essential oils and active ingredients
- Caciocavallo irpino di grotta PAT - Spun curd cheese, produced with milk from small and medium-sized farms, mainly from brown cattle, traditionally aged in caves
The town was known as Melito Irpino Valle Bonito from 1862 to 1923.
In the United States there is an association, the MIBA (Melito Irpino Boston Association), founded by Melitese emigrants who meet periodically to get to know and pass on the traditions, habits and customs of their town of origin to their children and grandchildren.
The origins of Melito Irpino are uncertain. The discovery, which took place towards the end of the 19th century, of traces of an ancient settlement have brought out various hypotheses on the belonging of the remains brought to light to some cities of the Roman-Samnite period: among these, there is also the city of Melae, from which the etymology of the name may derive.
The same uncertainty also characterizes the birth of the medieval village, the first mention of which took place between 1142 and 1164, during the period of Norman domination. Surely, the territory of Melito belonged to the Barony of De Forgia, to the Landolfo di Grottaminarda and the Barony of the Counts of Gesualdo. It was also a fief of the counts of Ariano, Della Marra, D'Aquino, Caracciolo and Pagano, until the abolition of feudalism in 1806.
Razed to the ground by the earthquake of 1962, Melito Irpino has lost almost all the architectural and cultural testimonies of the medieval period: only some places of interest, including the ruins of the Castle and the Old Church of Sant'Egidio, continue to keep the historical memory of the ancient village.
Melito Irpino, with new relationships with the territory and with space, is the cradle between the old and the new, for a community that knows how to welcome
Piazza degli Eroi, 1, 83030 Melito Irpino AV, Italia