Crotone is a city in Calabria, located along the coast of the Ionian Sea in Southern Italy and is the capital of the province of Crotone.

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Crotone city was founded by Greeks in the 8th century BC. The ancient town keeps evidence of a glorious past. It is a maze of narrow alleys, small squares and churches enclosed around by a wall. Ancient Crotone was one of the most powerful settlements in Magna Graecia before the rule of the Roman Empire.

Legend says that the name Crotone derives from “Kroton”, son of Eaco, who died accidentally killed by his friend Heracles. To remedy the mistake he made, and to the honor of the friend who had hosted him, he had him buried with a solemn ceremony on the banks of the Esaro torrent, and near the tomb built the city, to which he gave his name.

Another interpretation traces the name of the city to the hero Kroton, brother of Alcinoo, king of the Phaeacians. Finally, a possible explanation of the name links to the sound emitted by herons or cranes, that populated the coastal marshes. In fact, a heron appears next to the tripod on some of Kroton’s oldest silver coins.

In the 16th century, the city was called "Cotrone". In 1928 the city name was changed from Cotrone in Crotone. Crotone is famously associated with Pythagoras, the famous philosopher and mathematician. He arrived here about 532 BC. Most of Pythagoras' intellectual knowledge belongs not to mystical wisdom, but more to science. Pythagoras established his famous school here in 530 BC. Around the same time, together with Alcmaeon and Democedes, was established medical school, helping to transform medicine towards science. Alcmaeon has been one of the greatest philosophers and medical theorists in Croton. He used to apply Pythagorean teachings to his writings. Also, with the help of Pythagoras, there was an improved athletic school, where later the highest victories were won by the legendary Milone.

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The city’s land includes marine terraces, alluvial plains, limestone ramparts, plateaus, and clay-rich areas near the seashore. The city of Crotone, which has its rich roots in ancient history offers its visitors a vast heritage accumulated from the ancient ages of Magna Graecia to the Aragonese and a medieval old town with historic houses, squares, and ancient places of worship. The Pescheria District in Crotone is known as the historic center of town.

Map of Crotone

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  • 1 Cattedrale di Santa Maria Assunta. Cathedral dating back to the 9th century  
  • 2 Castello di Carlo V (Castle of Charles V). 16th-century  
  • 3 Temple of Juno Lacinia. ruined Ancient Greek temple    

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