Religion: The Headwork of Visciano

Between the cherry crop in June and the hazelnut harvest in October, the villagers of Visciano, high in the Samnite Hills of southern Italy, have plenty of time to think. So they take it. The plainsmen down in Nola choose to think the Samnite hill people are slow-witted. "Do you come from Visciano?" they ask anyone who is particularly slow of speech.

Most of the Viscianesi do not seem to mind, but it bothered the mayor of Visciano to be chief of a community so regarded. He badgered the government in Rome into replacing the mountain mule track with a real road...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!