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Dirillo river (Achates river), Acate, Ragusa Province, Sicily, Italy

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Name(s) in local language(s): Fiume Dirillo (Achates), Ragusa Province, Sicily, Italy
 
"Achates" was the name with which 2000 years ago it was named a river which actually is known as Fiume Dirillo, in Sicily. This last name, Dirillo, is a probable heritage of Arabian occupation of island in middle age (the Arab name was Wadi Ikrilu).
The name Achates it was given to the river by Greek people that colonized Sicily before Romans who simply continued to call the river with that name. Along the upper course of Achates river (Dirillo river of our times) Greeks and, after them, Romans found beautiful Agates. Greek colonists, before Romans, found there this coloured calcedony variety and exported it in various localities of Mediterranean area. In Roman age, the naturalist and scientist Plinius the Old and also the poet Silius Italicus quote in their writings that Agate had been found for the first time here in Sicily, in Achates river, from which the stone took the name.

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References

Tata D. (1772): Catalogo di una raccolta di pietre dure native di Sicilia esistente presso l’abate D. Domenico Tata. Fratelli Raimondi, Napoli, 40 pp.

Mineral and/or Locality  
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