The ancient Castrum Diani
The fortified hilltop village Castrum Diani was mentioned the first time in a document from 1123. However, man’s frequentation of the area would be much older, dating back to at least a millennium before the birth of Christ.
The village stands in a strategic defensive position against the Saracen raids coming from the sea during the 9th and 10th centuries.
In the historic naval battle of Meloria on August 6, 1284 which saw the fleet of the Republic of Genoa defeating the Maritime Republic of Pisa, a galley of “Dianesi” excelled, with its four sailors, one hundred and twenty rowers and eighty crossbowmen. The bold enterprises of the inhabitants of the village are remembered in a fresco on the facade of the Palazzo dei Conti Quaglia, today the seat of the Municipality.
Originally the hill of Diano Castello was severely lacking in springs and water sources.
To remedy this serious gap, huge cisterns, called “lone”, often interconnected with each other, were dug into the sedimentary rock to collect rainwater coming from the roofs of the houses.
In medieval times the Dianesi also built the Fontana del Melo along the mule track that leads to Diano San Pietro
Testo a cura di Nicola Ferrarese, immagini di Corrado Agnese.
Fonte: Andrea Gandolfo “La Provincia di Imperia” edita da Blu Edizioni 2005.