The public domain consists of all the creative works to which no exclusive intellectual property rights apply. Those rights may have been forfeited, expressly waived, or may be inapplicable; the works of William Shakespeare and Beethoven, most early silent films, are in the public domain either by virtue of their having been created before copyright existed, or by their copyright term having expired. Some works are not covered by copyright, are therefore in the public domain—among them the formulae of Newtonian physics, cooking recipes, all computer software created prior to 1974. Other works are dedicated by their authors to the public domain; the term public domain is not applied to situations where the creator of a work retains residual rights, in which case use of the work is referred to as "under license" or "with permission". As rights vary by country and jurisdiction, a work may be subject to rights in one country and be in the public domain in another; some rights depend on registrations on a country-by-country basis, the absence of registration in a particular country, if required, gives rise to public-domain status for a work in that country.
The term public domain may be interchangeably used with other imprecise or undefined terms such as the "public sphere" or "commons", including concepts such as the "commons of the mind", the "intellectual commons", the "information commons". Although the term "domain" did not come into use until the mid-18th century, the concept "can be traced back to the ancient Roman Law, as a preset system included in the property right system." The Romans had a large proprietary rights system where they defined "many things that cannot be owned" as res nullius, res communes, res publicae and res universitatis. The term res nullius was defined as things not yet appropriated; the term res communes was defined as "things that could be enjoyed by mankind, such as air and ocean." The term res publicae referred to things that were shared by all citizens, the term res universitatis meant things that were owned by the municipalities of Rome. When looking at it from a historical perspective, one could say the construction of the idea of "public domain" sprouted from the concepts of res communes, res publicae, res universitatis in early Roman law.
When the first early copyright law was first established in Britain with the Statute of Anne in 1710, public domain did not appear. However, similar concepts were developed by French jurists in the 18th century. Instead of "public domain", they used terms such as publici juris or propriété publique to describe works that were not covered by copyright law; the phrase "fall in the public domain" can be traced to mid-19th century France to describe the end of copyright term. The French poet Alfred de Vigny equated the expiration of copyright with a work falling "into the sink hole of public domain" and if the public domain receives any attention from intellectual property lawyers it is still treated as little more than that, left when intellectual property rights, such as copyright and trademarks, expire or are abandoned. In this historical context Paul Torremans describes copyright as a, "little coral reef of private right jutting up from the ocean of the public domain." Copyright law differs by country, the American legal scholar Pamela Samuelson has described the public domain as being "different sizes at different times in different countries".
Definitions of the boundaries of the public domain in relation to copyright, or intellectual property more regard the public domain as a negative space. According to James Boyle this definition underlines common usage of the term public domain and equates the public domain to public property and works in copyright to private property. However, the usage of the term public domain can be more granular, including for example uses of works in copyright permitted by copyright exceptions; such a definition regards work in copyright as private property subject to fair-use rights and limitation on ownership. A conceptual definition comes from Lange, who focused on what the public domain should be: "it should be a place of sanctuary for individual creative expression, a sanctuary conferring affirmative protection against the forces of private appropriation that threatened such expression". Patterson and Lindberg described the public domain not as a "territory", but rather as a concept: "here are certain materials – the air we breathe, rain, life, thoughts, ideas, numbers – not subject to private ownership.
The materials that compose our cultural heritage must be free for all living to use no less than matter necessary for biological survival." The term public domain may be interchangeably used with other imprecise or undefined terms such as the "public sphere" or "commons", including concepts such as the "commons of the mind", the "intellectual commons", the "information commons". A public-domain book is a book with no copyright, a book, created without a license, or a book where its copyrights expired or have been forfeited. In most countries the term of protection of copyright lasts until January first, 70 years after the death of the latest living author; the longest copyright term is in Mexico, which has life plus 100 years for all deaths since July 1928. A notable exception is the United States, where every book and tale published prior to 1924 is in the public domain.
Encyclopædia Britannica, Eleventh Edition
The Encyclopædia Britannica, Eleventh Edition is a 29-volume reference work, an edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica. It was developed during the encyclopaedia's transition from a British to an American publication; some of its articles were written by the best-known scholars of the time. This edition of the encyclopedia, containing 40,000 entries, is now in the public domain, many of its articles have been used as a basis for articles in Wikipedia. However, the outdated nature of some of its content makes its use as a source for modern scholarship problematic; some articles have special value and interest to modern scholars as cultural artifacts of the 19th and early 20th centuries. The 1911 eleventh edition was assembled with the management of American publisher Horace Everett Hooper. Hugh Chisholm, who had edited the previous edition, was appointed editor in chief, with Walter Alison Phillips as his principal assistant editor. Hooper bought the rights to the 25-volume 9th edition and persuaded the British newspaper The Times to issue its reprint, with eleven additional volumes as the tenth edition, published in 1902.
Hooper's association with The Times ceased in 1909, he negotiated with the Cambridge University Press to publish the 29-volume eleventh edition. Though it is perceived as a quintessentially British work, the eleventh edition had substantial American influences, not only in the increased amount of American and Canadian content, but in the efforts made to make it more popular. American marketing methods assisted sales; some 14% of the contributors were from North America, a New York office was established to coordinate their work. The initials of the encyclopedia's contributors appear at the end of selected articles or at the end of a section in the case of longer articles, such as that on China, a key is given in each volume to these initials; some articles were written by the best-known scholars of the time, such as Edmund Gosse, J. B. Bury, Algernon Charles Swinburne, John Muir, Peter Kropotkin, T. H. Huxley, James Hopwood Jeans and William Michael Rossetti. Among the lesser-known contributors were some who would become distinguished, such as Ernest Rutherford and Bertrand Russell.
Many articles were carried over from some with minimal updating. Some of the book-length articles were divided into smaller parts for easier reference, yet others much abridged; the best-known authors contributed only a single article or part of an article. Most of the work was done by British Museum scholars and other scholars; the 1911 edition was the first edition of the encyclopædia to include more than just a handful of female contributors, with 34 women contributing articles to the edition. The eleventh edition introduced a number of changes of the format of the Britannica, it was the first to be published complete, instead of the previous method of volumes being released as they were ready. The print type was subject to continual updating until publication, it was the first edition of Britannica to be issued with a comprehensive index volume in, added a categorical index, where like topics were listed. It was the first not to include long treatise-length articles. Though the overall length of the work was about the same as that of its predecessor, the number of articles had increased from 17,000 to 40,000.
It was the first edition of Britannica to include biographies of living people. Sixteen maps of the famous 9th edition of Stielers Handatlas were translated to English, converted to Imperial units, printed in Gotha, Germany by Justus Perthes and became part this edition. Editions only included Perthes' great maps as low quality reproductions. According to Coleman and Simmons, the content of the encyclopedia was distributed as follows: Hooper sold the rights to Sears Roebuck of Chicago in 1920, completing the Britannica's transition to becoming a American publication. In 1922, an additional three volumes, were published, covering the events of the intervening years, including World War I. These, together with a reprint of the eleventh edition, formed the twelfth edition of the work. A similar thirteenth edition, consisting of three volumes plus a reprint of the twelfth edition, was published in 1926, so the twelfth and thirteenth editions were related to the eleventh edition and shared much of the same content.
However, it became apparent that a more thorough update of the work was required. The fourteenth edition, published in 1929, was revised, with much text eliminated or abridged to make room for new topics; the eleventh edition was the basis of every version of the Encyclopædia Britannica until the new fifteenth edition was published in 1974, using modern information presentation. The eleventh edition's articles are still of value and interest to modern readers and scholars as a cultural artifact: the British Empire was at its maximum, imperialism was unchallenged, much of the world was still ruled by monarchs, the tragedy of the modern world wars was still in the future, they are an invaluable resource for topics omitted from modern encyclopedias for biography and the history of science and technology. As a literary text, the encyclopedia has value as an example of early 20th-century prose. For example, it employs literary devices, such as pathetic fallacy, which are not as common in modern reference texts.
In 1917, using the pseudonym of S. S. Van Dine, the US art critic and author Willard Huntington Wright published Misinforming a Nation, a 200+
Pliny the Elder
Pliny the Elder was a Roman author and natural philosopher, a naval and army commander of the early Roman Empire, friend of emperor Vespasian. Spending most of his spare time studying and investigating natural and geographic phenomena in the field, Pliny wrote the encyclopedic Naturalis Historia, which became an editorial model for encyclopedias, his nephew, Pliny the Younger, wrote of him in a letter to the historian Tacitus: For my part I deem those blessed to whom, by favour of the gods, it has been granted either to do what is worth writing of, or to write what is worth reading. In the latter number will be my uncle, of your compositions. Pliny the Younger refers to Tacitus’s reliance upon his uncle's book, the History of the German Wars. Pliny the Elder died in AD 79 in Stabiae while attempting the rescue of a friend and his family by ship from the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, which had destroyed the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum; the wind caused by the sixth and largest pyroclastic surge of the volcano’s eruption did not allow his ship to leave port, Pliny died during that event.
Pliny's dates are pinned to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79 and a statement of his nephew that he died in his 56th year, which would put his birth in AD 23 or 24. Pliny was the son of an equestrian, Gaius Plinius Celer, his wife, Marcella. Neither the younger nor the elder Pliny mention the names, their ultimate source is a fragmentary inscription found in a field in Verona and recorded by the 16th-century Augustinian monk Onofrio Panvinio at Verona. The form is an elegy; the most accepted reconstruction is PLINIVS SECVNDVS AVGV. LERI. PATRI. MATRI. MARCELLAE. TESTAMENTO FIERI IVSSOThe Vs represent Us, it should say "Plinius Secundus augur ordered this to be made as a testament to his father ler and his mother Marcella"The actual words are fragmentary. The reading of the inscription depends on the reconstruction, but in all cases the names come through. Whether he was an augur and whether she was named Grania Marcella are less certain. Jean Hardouin presents a statement from an unknown source that he claims was ancient, that Pliny was from Verona and that his parents were Celer and Marcella.
Hardouin cites the conterraneity of Catullus. How the inscription got to Verona is unknown, but it could have arrived by dispersal of property from Pliny the Younger's Tuscan estate at Colle Plinio, north of Città di Castello, identified for certain by his initials in the roof tiles, he kept statues of his ancestors there. Pliny the Elder was born at Como, not at Verona: it is only as a native of old Gallia Transpadana that he calls Catullus of Verona his conterraneus, or fellow-countryman, not his municeps, or fellow-townsman. A statue of Pliny on the façade of the Duomo of Como celebrates him as a native son, he had a sister, who married into the Caecilii and was the mother of his nephew, Pliny the Younger, whose letters describe his work and study regimen in detail. In one of his letters to Tacitus, Pliny the Younger details how his uncle's breakfasts would be light and simple following the customs of our forefathers; this shows that Pliny the Younger wanted it to be conveyed that Pliny the Elder was a "good Roman", which means that he maintained the customs of the great Roman forefathers.
This statement would have pleased Tacitus. Two inscriptions identifying the hometown of Pliny the Younger as Como take precedence over the Verona theory. One commemorates the younger's career as the imperial magistrate and details his considerable charitable and municipal expenses on behalf of the people of Como. Another identifies his father Lucius' village as Fecchio near Como. Therefore, Plinia was a local girl and Pliny the Elder, her brother, was from Como. Gaius was a member of the Plinia gens: the insubric root Plina still persists, with rhotacism, in the local surname "Prina", he did not take his father's cognomen, but assumed his own, Secundus. As his adopted son took the same cognomen, Pliny founded the Plinii Secundi; the family was prosperous. No earlier instances of the Plinii are known. In 59 BC, only about 82 years before Pliny's birth, Julius Caesar founded Novum Comum as a colonia to secure the region against the Alpine tribes, whom he had been unable to defeat, he imported a population of 4,500 from other provinces to be placed in Comasco and 500 aristocratic Greeks to found Novum Comum itself.
The community was thus multi-ethnic and the Plinies could have come from anywhere. No record of any ethnic distinctions in Pliny's time is apparent; the population prided themselves on being Roman citizens. Pliny the Elder had no children. In his will, he adopted his nephew; the adoption is called a "testamental adoption" by writers on the topic, who assert that it applied to the name change only, but Roman jurisprudence recognizes no such category. Pliny the Younger thus became the adopted son of Pliny the Elder after the latter's death. Fo
Claudius Ptolemy was a Greco-Roman mathematician, astronomer and astrologer. He lived in the city of Alexandria in the Roman province of Egypt, wrote in Koine Greek, held Roman citizenship; the 14th-century astronomer Theodore Meliteniotes gave his birthplace as the prominent Greek city Ptolemais Hermiou in the Thebaid. This attestation is quite late, and, according to Gerald Toomer, the translator of his Almagest into English, there is no reason to suppose he lived anywhere other than Alexandria, he died there around AD 168. Ptolemy wrote several scientific treatises, three of which were of importance to Byzantine and Western European science; the first is the astronomical treatise now known as the Almagest, although it was entitled the Mathematical Treatise and known as the Great Treatise. The second is the Geography, a thorough discussion of the geographic knowledge of the Greco-Roman world; the third is the astrological treatise in which he attempted to adapt horoscopic astrology to the Aristotelian natural philosophy of his day.
This is sometimes known as the Apotelesmatika but more known as the Tetrabiblos from the Greek meaning "Four Books" or by the Latin Quadripartitum. Ptolemaeus is a Greek name, it occurs once in Greek mythology, is of Homeric form. It was common among the Macedonian upper class at the time of Alexander the Great, there were several of this name among Alexander's army, one of whom made himself pharaoh in 323 BC: Ptolemy I Soter, the first king of the Ptolemaic Kingdom. All male kings of Hellenistic Egypt, until Egypt became a Roman province in 30 BC ending the Macedonian family's rule, were Ptolemies; the name Claudius is a Roman nomen. It would have suited custom if the first of Ptolemy's family to become a citizen took the nomen from a Roman called Claudius, responsible for granting citizenship. If, as was common, this was the emperor, citizenship would have been granted between AD 41 and 68; the astronomer would have had a praenomen, which remains unknown. The ninth-century Persian astronomer Abu Maʿshar presents Ptolemy as a member of Egypt's royal lineage, stating that the descendants of Alexander's general Ptolemy I, who ruled Egypt, were wise "and included Ptolemy the Wise, who composed the book of the Almagest".
Abu Maʿshar recorded a belief that a different member of this royal line "composed the book on astrology and attributed it to Ptolemy". We can evidence historical confusion on this point from Abu Maʿshar's subsequent remark "It is sometimes said that the learned man who wrote the book of astrology wrote the book of the Almagest; the correct answer is not known." There is little evidence on the subject of Ptolemy's ancestry, apart from what can be drawn from the details of his name. Ptolemy can be shown to have utilized Babylonian astronomical data, he was a Roman citizen, but was ethnically either a Greek or a Hellenized Egyptian. He was known in Arabic sources as "the Upper Egyptian", suggesting he may have had origins in southern Egypt. Arabic astronomers and physicists referred to him by his name in Arabic: بَطْلُمْيوس Baṭlumyus. Ptolemy's Almagest is the only surviving comprehensive ancient treatise on astronomy. Babylonian astronomers had developed arithmetical techniques for calculating astronomical phenomena.
Ptolemy, claimed to have derived his geometrical models from selected astronomical observations by his predecessors spanning more than 800 years, though astronomers have for centuries suspected that his models' parameters were adopted independently of observations. Ptolemy presented his astronomical models in convenient tables, which could be used to compute the future or past position of the planets; the Almagest contains a star catalogue, a version of a catalogue created by Hipparchus. Its list of forty-eight constellations is ancestral to the modern system of constellations, but unlike the modern system they did not cover the whole sky. Across Europe, the Middle East and North Africa in the Medieval period, it was the authoritative text on astronomy, with its author becoming an mythical figure, called Ptolemy, King of Alexandria; the Almagest was preserved, in Arabic manuscripts. Because of its reputation, it was sought and was translated twice into Latin in the 12th century, once in Sicily and again in Spain.
Ptolemy's model, like those of his predecessors, was geocentric and was universally accepted until the appearance of simpler heliocentric models during the scientific revolution. His Planetary Hypotheses went beyond the mathematical model of the Almagest to present a physical realization of the universe as a set of nested spheres, in which he used the epicycles of his planetary model to compute the dimensions of the universe, he estimated the Sun was at an average dis
Silius Italicus, in full Tiberius Catius Asconius Silius Italicus, was a Roman consul and Latin epic poet of the 1st century CE. His only surviving work is the 17-book Punica, an epic poem about the Second Punic War and the longest surviving poem in Latin at over 12,000 lines; the sources for the life of Silius Italicus are Letter 3.7 of Pliny the Younger, a description of the poet's life written on the occasion of his suicide, some inscriptions, several epigrams by the poet Martial. Silius is believed to have been born between AD 23 and 35, but his birthplace has not been securely identified. Italica, in the Roman province of Hispania, was once considered the prime candidate, based on his cognomen Italicus, but, if that were the case, Latin usage would have demanded the form Italicensis, it is improbable that Martial would have failed to name him among the literary celebrities of Spain in the latter half of the 1st century; the city of Patavium, Padua in northern Italy, has been suggested by J. D. Campbell based on a seeming bias in favor of the region in the Punica and the prevalence of the name Asconius in inscriptions from the region.
In early life Silius was a renowned forensic orator a safe and cautious politician. Silius was believed to have voluntarily and enthusiastically become an informer under Nero, prosecuting in court persons whom the emperor wished condemned, he was consul in the year of Nero's death, afterward became a close friend and ally of the emperor Vitellius, whom he served, according to Pliny sapienter et comiter and amicably. He is mentioned by Tacitus as having been one of two witnesses who were present at the conferences between Vitellius and Flavius Sabinus, the elder brother of Vespasian, when the legions from the East were marching on the capital. Silius became proconsul of Asia AD 77-78 as attested in an inscription from Aphrodisias which describes his activities in maintaining the institutions of the city. According to Pliny, he performed his duties well and earned himself a place of importance in the empire. After his proconsulship in Asia, Silius seems to have left politics in favor of a leisurely life.
Thus, he outlived the Flavian dynasty without incident. Pliny depicts him spending time in learned conversation at his villas, passionately collecting books and sculpture, giving recitations of his works. Silius was evidently writing poems as early as AD 88, it is believed that the Punica was written during this retirement period of Silius' life. Martial 7.63 indicates that some of the Punica had been published by AD 92 and that Silius was no longer making speeches in court. Book 14 has been dated tentatively to after AD 96 based on the poet's treatment of Domitian, his poem contains several passages relating to the Flavians, Domitian is eulogized as a warrior and as a singer whose lyre is sweeter than that of Orpheus himself. The poem mentions Domitian but seems to discuss the emperor Nerva, although Domitian may be meant by the latter reference; the poet's attitude to Domitian tends to be laudatory and friendly, employing the full spectrum of Virgilian panegyrical language and imagery. Silius was considered educated by contemporaries.
The philosopher Epictetus judged him to be the most philosophic spirit among the Romans of his time, Cornutus, the Stoic and grammarian, dedicated to Silius a commentary upon Virgil. He had two sons, one of whom, died young; the other, went on to become consul. As he aged, he moved permanently to his villas in Campania, not leaving to attend the accession ceremony of Trajan. Silius idealized and worshipped two great Romans of the past and Virgil, he purchased the tomb of Virgil in Naples, which he restored. Pliny records that Silius revered Virgil, celebrating Virgil's birthday more lavishly than his own and treating the poet's tomb as a shrine, his dual interests in composing epic poetry and discussing philosophical questions have been compared to the intellectual efforts of his heroes and Cicero, respectively. Silius was one of the numerous Romans of the early empire who had the courage of their opinions, carried into perfect practice the theory of suicide developed in Stoicism. Stricken by an incurable tumour after the age of 75, he starved himself to death around 103 CE, keeping a cheerful countenance to the end.
Pliny remarks that Silius was the last person to die, consul under Nero. Whether Silius committed his philosophic dialogues and speeches to writing or not, we cannot say, his only preserved work is his epic poem entitled Punica, about the Second Punic War in seventeen books, comprising some twelve thousand lines, making it the longest preserved poem in Latin literature. The dating of the Punica has been a difficult issue for classical scholars, but two passages, 3.594 and 14.680ff. Along with several poems of Martial cited above, indicate that it was composed sometime between 83 and 103, with Book 3 being dated to CE 84 and Book 14 around CE 96. Other books cannot be dated with any precision; the poem is composed in dactylic hexameter. It has been thought that the poem was planned in hexads and that the original intent was to round off the composition in 18 books; the poem takes Virgil as its primary dramatic inspiration throughout. Livy and Ennius are
Titus Livius – rendered as Livy in English – was a Roman historian. He wrote a monumental history of Rome and the Roman people – Ab Urbe Condita Libri – covering the period from the earliest legends of Rome before the traditional foundation in 753 BC through the reign of Augustus in Livy's own lifetime, he was on familiar terms with members of the Julio-Claudian dynasty and in friendship with Augustus, whose young grandnephew, the future emperor Claudius, he exhorted to take up the writing of history. Livy was born in Patavium in northern Italy, now modern Padua. There is a debate about the year of his birth- either in 64 BC, or more in 59 BC. At the time of his birth, his home city of Patavium was the second wealthiest on the Italian peninsula, the largest in the province of Cisalpine Gaul. Cisalpine Gaul was merged in Italia during his lifetime and its inhabitants were given Roman citizenship by Julius Caesar. In his works, Livy expressed his deep affection and pride for Patavium, the city was well known for its conservative values in morality and politics.
"He was by nature a recluse, mild in averse to violence. The governor of Cisalpine Gaul at the time, Asinius Pollio, tried to sway Patavium into supporting Marcus Antonius, the leader of one of the warring factions; the wealthy citizens of Patavium refused to contribute money and arms to Asinius Pollio, went into hiding. Pollio attempted to bribe the slaves of those wealthy citizens to expose the whereabouts of their masters, it is therefore that the Roman civil wars prevented Livy from pursuing a higher education in Rome or going on a tour of Greece, common for adolescent males of the nobility at the time. Many years Asinius Pollio derisively commented on Livy's "patavinity", saying that Livy's Latin showed certain "provincialisms" frowned on at Rome. Pollio's dig may have been the result of bad feelings he harboured toward the city of Patavium from his experiences there during the civil wars. Livy went to Rome in the 30s BC, it is that he spent a large amount of time in the city after this, although it may not have been his primary home.
During his time in Rome, he held a government position. His writings contain elementary mistakes on military matters, indicating that he never served in the Roman army. However, he was educated in rhetoric, it seems that Livy had the financial resources and means to live an independent life, though the origin of that wealth is unknown. He devoted a large part of his life to his writings, which he was able to do because of his financial freedom. Livy was known to give recitations to small audiences, but he was not heard of to engage in declamation a common pastime, he was familiar with the imperial family. Augustus was considered by Romans to have been the greatest Roman emperor, benefiting Livy's reputation long after his death. Suetonius described how Livy encouraged the future emperor Claudius, born in 10 BC, to write historiographical works during his childhood. Livy's most famous work was his history of Rome. In it he narrates a complete history of the city of Rome, from its foundation to the death of Augustus.
Because he was writing under the reign of Augustus, Livy's history emphasizes the great triumphs of Rome. He wrote his history with embellished accounts of Roman heroism in order to promote the new type of government implemented by Augustus when he became emperor. In Livy's preface to his history, he said that he did not care whether his personal fame remained in darkness, as long as his work helped to "preserve the memory of the deeds of the world’s preeminent nation"; because Livy was writing about events that had occurred hundreds of years earlier, the historical value of his work was questionable, although many Romans came to believe his account to be true. Livy had at least one daughter and one son, he produced other works, including an essay in the form of a letter to his son, numerous dialogues, most modelled on similar works by Cicero. Titus Livius died in his home city of Patavium in either AD 12 or 17. Livy's only surviving work is the "History of Rome", his career from his mid-life 32, until he left Rome for Padua in old age in the reign of Tiberius after the death of Augustus.
When he began this work he was past his youth. Seneca the Younger gives brief mention that he was known as an orator and philosopher and had written some treatises in those fields from a historical point of view. Livy's History of Rome was in high demand from the time it was published and remained so during the early years of the empire. Pliny the Younger reported that Livy's celebrity was so widespread, a man from Cadiz travelled to Rome and back for the sole purpose of meeting him. Livy's work was a source for the works of Aurelius Victor, Eutropius, Florus, Granius Licinianus and Orosius. Julius Obsequens used Livy, or a source with access to Livy, to compose his De Prodigiis, an account of supernatural e
Civitella del Tronto
Civitella del Tronto is a town and comune in the province of Teramo, within the Abruzzo region of central Italy. It is located in the Gran Sasso e Monti della Laga National Park; the origins of Civitella are unknown, though in the area have been found traces of human presence as early as the Neolithic and Upper Palaeolithic ages. The current town is believed to lie on a town of the Piceni Italic tribe, it is first mentioned as a walled town. In 1557 it was in vain. Thanks to its fierce resistance, it was given the title of Fidelissima by King Philip II of Spain. Civitella was besieged again by the French during the Napoleonic Wars, in 1798 and 1806, this time being captured after four months of defence. In 1816, after the Congress of Vienna, it was annexed to the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies; the fortress of Civitella was the location of the last stand of that Kingdom after the Garibaldine and Piedmontese invasion of 1860, after the King Francis II had surrendered in Gaeta and Sicily being annexed to the newly formed Kingdom of Italy.
Civitella surrendered on 20 March 1861. The Fortress of Civitella is the largest in Italy, the second in Europe after the Hohensalzburg in Salzburg, Austria, it is located on the top of a rocky cliff, being about 500 metres long and 45 metres wide, for a total surface of 25,000 square metres. The town has the following churches: San Francesco: built in 1326 in Gothic-Romanesque style, while the interior is Baroque San Lorenzo: rebuilt in the 18th century in Baroque style, but maintaining the Renaissance façade. Santa Maria degli Angeli Sanctuary and Convent of Santa Maria dei Lumi: It includes a Romanesque portico and a polychrome wooden statue of the Madonna dei Lumi, dating to 1489. Abbey of Santa Maria in Montesanto: Founded, according to the legend, by St. Benedict of Nursia himself in 542, in the 12th century it was one of the most powerful abbeys in the region; the surrounding mountains have karst topography in the landscapes of the Montagna dei Fiori. Salzburg, since 1989 Ascoli Piceno, Italy Matteo Wade, the Irish commander of the Civitella fortress in the 1806 siege