Palazzo Beneventano

Southeastern Sicily

The Unesco-listed 18th-century Palazzo Beneventano is Sicilian baroque on steroids. Fantastical stone creatures taunt, terrorise or merely bemuse from the palace's corbels, arches and cornices. Among them are turban-wearing Moors and shaven, collar-wearing black slaves, unusual features in Sicilian baroque decoration and a sobering reminder of Europe's historic slave trade. The palace itself is named for the Beneventano, a noble family originally from the Sicilian town of Lentini, south of Catania.

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