Cultural Heritages in Aterno Valley (Italy): Historical Watermills for Cereals Grinding

  • Romolo Continenza
  • Stefano Brusaporci
Conference paper
Part of the History of Mechanism and Machine Science book series (HMMS, volume 15)


Watermills were known and used from the Roman age; they diffused during medieval age and had a preponderance between working machines till the advent of steam engine. Fundamentally they can be classified as mills with horizontal wheel and mills with vertical wheel. Mills are complex structures, made by mechanisms, hydraulics works, buildings, and are witnesses of past cultures. The case study are the watermills of Aterno Valley (Italy), a territory between Gran Sasso and Sirente-Velino natural parks. The study involves different topics: history, hydrology, mechanics, architecture. Historical analysis and mill’s surveying favour the comprehension of mill’s documental values. They can be studied as indicators of modifications of technologies, society, economy, territory during centuries. Watermills are cultural heritages and we believe that only through the integration of all contributions deriving from different research fields will create a comprehensive and exhaustive description of the phenomena that have allowed the construction, the use and the actual neglected conditions of mills, and that can favour their conservation, protection and exploitation.


Cultural Heritage Steam Engine Hydraulic Power Hydraulic Machine Exhaustive Description 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Netherlands 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Romolo Continenza
    • 1
  • Stefano Brusaporci
    • 1
  1. 1.Architecture and Town Planning DepartmentL’Aquila UniversityL’AquilaItaly

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