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The Island has been inhabited since the remotest times, with periods of abandonment, followed by slow repopulation.
The first settlement rises in the Middle Neolithic, around 4500 years B.C. :archeological diggings have brought to life the remains of prehistoric villages and Greek and Roman settlement of major interest. Remains of a hut, obsidian and ceramic, dating back to prehistoric times, have been found in different sites: in “Rinicedda” area, a village of Leni’s communes, in Brigadiere area and on Monte Fosse delle Felci.
Settlment of the Bronze Age have been discovered at Serra dei Cianfi, between Santa Marina and Faro, and at Sciara Portella, a village dating back to “la Cultura del Milazzese” and probably destroyed by the Ausoni in 1270 B.C.
The island remained abandoned until 580 B.C., when a group of Greek settled in Lipari and started to cultivate the fertile land of Salina. As demostrated by the IV – V century settlements of Serra dell’Acqua e of a bigger one close to S.Marina, the island is inhabited in Greek times as well as in Hellenistic and Roman times, and still until Byzantine and Medieval times.Due to the volcanic activity of Lipari, in the VII centuary A.C. Salina was one of the most inhabited; then, instead, due to the Arabs invasions it remained unpopulated until 1083, when the Normans arrived. They revitalized the agricultural economy of Salina, together with those of the other archipelago’s islands.
After then, there was a resettlement and a stabilization of the settlements in the island only at the end of the 17th century, when the Turkish piracy disappeared.The history of the nineteenth and twentieth century is related to the production and commerce of capers and Malvasia. In 1889 phylloxera affected the economy of the island, it killed most of the vines from which they produced “il Nettare degli Dei” and fine wine; this pushed the local population to emigrate and it produce a demography halving, the population was reduced to 4550 people.
Nowadays the future of Salina is flourishing thanks to the return to the traditional production and to the tourism.