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Sicilia (Roman province): Wikis

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Sicilia was the first province acquired by the Roman Republic, organised in 241 BC as a proconsular governed territory, in the aftermath of the First Punic War with Carthage. It included Sicily and Malta.

Sicilia remained a province of the Roman Republic and Roman Empire for six centuries. It was regarded as something of a rural backwater, important chiefly for its grainfields which were a mainstay of the food supply of the city of Rome. The empire did not make much effort to Romanize the region, which remained largely Greek. A notable event affecting Sicilia in the Late Republic was the notorious misgovernment of Verres, as prosecuted by Cicero in 70 BC in his speech In Verrem.

The historian Diodorus Siculus and the poet Calpurnius Siculus came from Sicilia, as indicated by the surname Siculus. The most famous archeological remains of this period are the mosaics of a nobleman's villa in present-day Piazza Armerina.

Sicilia was home to one of the earliest Christian communities and some of the earliest Christian martyrs, including Saint Agatha of Catania and Saint Lucy of Syracuse.

In 440, Sicilia fell to the Vandal King Geiseric. After the Byzantine conquest of the Vandal Kingdom, it became again a Roman province.

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