Grassano

Grassano is a municipality in the Italian province of Matera (in the Basilicata region) with 5189 inhabitants (as of 31 December 2015). It lies on the river Basento, which flows into the Ionian Sea. The city is located between the valley of the river Bradano and that of the Basento and not far from the river Bilioso in the northern part of the province of Matera. It extends from a height of 150 meters in the valley to one of 576 meters in the inhabited center. The neighboring municipalities are: to the west Calciano 15 km and Tricarico (18 km), in the south Garaguso (18 km) and Salandra (23 km), in the east Grottole (12 km) and in the north Irsina (22 km). More important buildings are the churches Matrice of San Giovanni, San Marco and Madonna della Neve from the 18th century and the palace. From May to September 1935, antifascist painter and writer Carlo Levi was banished here before being taken to the more remote village of Aliano. He described his experiences in Grassano and Aliano later in the world-famous book "Cristo si è fermato a Eboli" (Christ only came to Eboli), published in 1945. He wrote about Grassano: Like all places in this country, Grassano is a white spot on the summit a high, bare hill like a little dreamed Jerusalem in the solitude of a desert.

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