Amalfi Town on Tyrrhenian Sea seen from Conca dei Marini.

Mark Read


It is hard to grasp that pretty little Amalfi, with its sun-filled piazzas and small beach, was once a maritime superpower with a population of more than 70,000. For one thing, it’s not a big place – you can easily walk from one end to the other in about 20 minutes. For another, there are very few historical buildings of note. The explanation is chilling: most of the old city, and its inhabitants, simply slid into the sea during an earthquake in 1343.

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