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Arpino (Campanian: Arpinë) is a comune (municipality) in the province of Frosinone, in the Latin Valley, region of Lazio in central Italy, about 100 km SE of Rome. Its Roman name was Arpinum.[3] In Roman times, the town produced two consuls of the Roman Republic: Gaius Marius and Marcus Tullius Cicero.[4]

Comune di Arpino
Arpino panorama.jpg
Coat of arms of Arpino
Coat of arms
Location of Arpino
Arpino is located in Italy
Location of Arpino in Italy
Arpino is located in Lazio
Arpino (Lazio)
Coordinates: 41°38′52″N 13°36′35″E / 41.64778°N 13.60972°E / 41.64778; 13.60972
ProvinceFrosinone (FR)
 • MayorRenato Rea
 • Total55 km2 (21 sq mi)
447 m (1,467 ft)
 (31 December 2017)[2]
 • Total7,150
 • Density130/km2 (340/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
Dialing code0776
Patron saintMadonna of Loreto
Saint dayDecember 10
WebsiteOfficial website


Pointed arch in the walls.

The ancient city of Arpinum dates back to at least the 7th century BC. Connected with the Pelasgi, the Volsci and Samnite people, it was captured by the Romans and granted civitas sine suffragio in 305 BC. The city gained Roman suffrage in 188 BC and the status of a municipium in 90 BC.

The town produced both Gaius Marius and Marcus Tullius Cicero, who were homines novi (people from new families who were elected to the Roman Senate, usually referring to those who had reached the office of Consul). Cicero, in speeches before the courts in Rome, would later praise his hometown's contributions to the Republic when attacked as a "foreigner", for Arpinum had twice borne men to save the Republic: Marius against the Cimbric invaders of 101 BC and Cicero himself against the Second Catilinarian conspiracy.[4] Cicero in letters to his friend Atticus referred often to the peace and quiet of his beloved Arpinum. There is an oral tradition that persists to this day that Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa was also a native of Arpinum.[5] Historians however have not been able to confirm his place of birth.

Beside the ancient town of Arpinum there are the fortified remains of a much earlier Samnite town.[citation needed] The high defensive walls are of the polygonal type associated historically with these people. There is an example of an arch of this type which can still be still seen today. Dates are generally from the early Roman period to about 400 BC. The recent suggestions that these walls were created by some superior beings given their large size blocks is considered to be completely untrue and scurrilous. The Stone is some times referred to as puddingstone but in this case it seem to be of a more sedimentary dark gray type. Arpinum, Atina, and Cominium were known Samnite strongholds.[citation needed] The Valle di Comino nearby is considered to be strong Samnite and subsections of the tribes home lands and the language generally spoken up to the Roman assimilations was Oscan part of the "Co" group of Indo-European languages.[citation needed]

Ancient Roman basalt pavement in Arpino

In the early Middle Ages, the Roman duchy and the Duchy of Benevento contended for its strategic position. After the 11th century it was ruled by the Normans, the Hohenstaufen and by the Papal States. It was destroyed twice; in 1229 by Frederick II and in 1242 by Conrad IV.[citation needed]

The castrato sopranist Gioacchino Conti, known as Il Gizziello or heb ceilliau, was born in Arpino in 1714.[citation needed]

Main sightsEdit

Attractions include the circuit walls in polygonal masonry.[6] These walls include an example of an ogive arch.[7]

Richard Wilson - Cicero with his friend Atticus and brother Quintus, at his villa at Arpinum - Google Art Project

Below Arpino, in the Liri valley, a little north of the Isola del Liri, lies the church of S. Domenico, which marks the site of the villa in which Cicero was born and frequently resided. Near it is an ancient bridge, of a road which crossed the Liris to Cereatae (modern Casamari).[8]


  1. ^ "Superficie di Comuni Province e Regioni italiane al 9 ottobre 2011". Istat. Retrieved 16 March 2019.
  2. ^ "Popolazione Residente al 1° Gennaio 2018". Istat. Retrieved 16 March 2019.
  3. ^ Richard Stillwell (14 March 2017). The Princeton Encyclopedia of Classical Sites. Princeton University Press. pp. 95–. ISBN 978-1-4008-8658-6.
  4. ^ a b Roselaar, Saskia T. (2016). "Cicero and the Italians". In du Plessis, Paul J. (ed.). Cicero and the Italians:: Expansion of Empire, Creation of Law. Cicero's Law. Rethinking Roman Law of the Late Republic. Edinburgh University Press. p. 154. ISBN 978-1-4744-0882-0. JSTOR 10.3366/j.ctt1g050m4.14.
  5. ^ Reinhold, Meyer (1933). Marcus Agrippa: A Biography. Geneva: W. F. Humphrey Press. p. 9. ISBN 9788870624144.
  6. ^ Charles Kelsall (1820). Classical Excursion from Rome to Arpino. author. pp. 88–.
  7. ^ Leonardo B. Dal Maso; Roberto Vighi (1979). Archeological Latium. Bonechi, Edizioni "Il Turismo".
  8. ^   One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainAshby, Thomas (1911). "Arpino". In Chisholm, Hugh (ed.). Encyclopædia Britannica. 2 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 641.


External linksEdit