Detailed sheets

The territory of Arzachena during the Middle Ages

The port and village of Arsaghena, built near the church of Santa Maria Maggiore, belonged to the medieval diocese of Civita (fig. 1) and the curatoria of Unales in the Giudicato of Gallura,  whose territory lay between the sea, the hills of Cugnana, and the Riu Carana-Riu in Liscia (fig. 2).

Fig. 1 - The Curatorie of the Giudicato of Arborea (from PINNA 2008, p. 91).
Fig. 2 - Le Curatorie del Giudicato di Gallura (da PINNA 2008, p. 91).

The conquest of the remaining Giudicato territory by the Pisani took place slowly, between 1299 and 1308. In 1330, after the defeat of the Pisani and once the hostility of the local population had been overcome, Arzachena and the curatoria of Unale, invaded by the troops of Ramon de Cardona, passed under the Crown of Aragon.

In 1346 Giovanni of Arborea, the brother of Mariano IV, managed to buy the villa and the port of Arzachena, owned by Francesco Daurats and joined the fief to Fundimonte which included the city of Civita or Terranova (today’s Olbia).

The town was abandoned between the late fourteenth century and the beginning of the fifteenth century because of the plague. Today’s Arzachena was steadily repopulated during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, thanks to the contribution by the population from the surrounding areas, which clustered around the church of Santa Maria Maggiore, rebuilt in 1776 (fig. 3).

Fig. 3 - Medieval Sardinia (from PINNA 2008, p. 42).


  • PINNA F., Archeologia del territorio in Sardegna. La Gallura tra tarda antichità e medioevo, Cagliari 2008.