Celano is a comune in the province of L’Aquila, Central Italy, 120 km east of Rome. It rises on the top of a hill in the territory of Marsica, below the mountain range of Sirente, and faces the valley of Fucino, once filled by the large Fucine Lake, which was drained during the 19th century. After the fall of the Western Roman Empire, Celano suffered from the invasions of Lombards (6th century). The city passed under Byzantine control, and was then subdued by the Lombards. From the 8th century, Charlemagne and his descendants ruled the Marsica region. Celano was elected Caput Marsorum (capital city of the Marsica region), governed by the Berardi family. From 1140, it was captured by the Normans, who annexed it to the Kingdom of Sicily. Fearing that Marsica was becoming too powerful, in the year 1223 Emperor Frederick II ordered his army to destroy the castles of the region. Celano suffered a long siege, which ended with its defeat and total destruction and the exile of its entire male population to Sicily and Malta. Once the feudal rights of Celano were abolished, the region came under the jurisdiction of the Giustizierato of Abruzzo, with Sulmona as capital. After the intercession of the Pope Honorius III, Emperor Frederick II authorised the inhabitants to return from exile. The new city was rebuilt 3 years after its destruction, about 1 km from the ancient city. Celano reflourished and was once again governed by the Berardi family. After a series of struggles between the Angevins and Aragonese, in the 15th century the family of Berardi was dethroned by the family of the Pope Pius II of Pienza, allied to the Aragonese, who governed the city. Celano was incorporated into the Kingdom of Naples till 1860, except during the years associated with the Napoleonic era and the Parthenopean Republic. In 1591, the Piccolomini family sold the County of Celano to Camilla Peretti, sister of Pope Sixtus V. The city was at times also governed by the Savelli and Sforza families and was damaged by earthquakes in the years 1695, 1780, 1915 and 2009. From 1860 on, Celano belonged to the Kingdom of Italy.