Amelia, formerly known as Ameria, owes its name to a legendary founder, King Ameroe.
According to Cato the Censor, the city was founded about four centuries before Rome, around 1134 BC. Due to the strategic position of the city and the power of nearby peoples, such as the Etruscans, the polygonal walls were built in the 6th-4th century BC, which are still visible today. Some historians state that Ameria became a Roman municipality in 338 BC, while others state that this occurred around the 1st century BC. During Roman domination, the city enjoyed a period of magnificence, as demonstrated by the remains of Roman baths and cisterns, exhibited in the Archaeological Museum and in the Municipal Art Gallery.
In 363, the city became a bishopric and was subsequently dominated by the Lombards and the Roman-Byzantines. Among the illustrious people who were born in the city are the painter Piermatteo d’Amelia and Cardinal Alessandro Geraldini, who favored Christopher Columbus’ journey to discover America.
Today, the city’s museum circuit includes the Civic Archaeological Museum, the Roman Cistern and Palazzo Petrignani, which can be visited with a single ticket.