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A Frazione of Acquasparta

A town of S central Umbria, a frazione of Acquasparta: 42°39.5N, 12°34.1E. Altitude: 470 m. Population in 2001: 126.

[image ALT: A landscape of oak forest, rising to a small hill about 800 meters from the camera; on its summit, a small clump of maybe fifteen houses with the belfry of a church jutting up from it. It is a view of the village of Portaria, near Acquasparta, Umbria (central Italy).]

Portaria, seen here from the north, from the road to Macerino (3.5 km NE), is the largest frazione in the comune of Acquasparta, 4.5 km NW: both these distances as the crow flies, but made much longer on foot over roads twisting thru the hills. And sure enough, the town is maybe three times larger than what we see here, extending east behind those trees and off-camera left quite a ways.

The town has a long history as an independent town until not so long ago, forming part of the shadowy Terre Arnolfe. The name of the town first appears in written sources in 1093, as Porcaria — almost certainly referring to the raising of pigs, with Umbria still famous today for her ham and sausages — a fief of the abbey of Montecassino.

I've visited Portaria twice; my diary entries for once are pretty detailed, giving a partial feel for the actual life of the town, and each has a photo: Nov. 5, 1994 Oct. 13, 1997.

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Page updated: 2 Apr 16