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Cefalù

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DIOCESE OF CEFALÙ (CEPHALUDENSIS); CEPHALOEDIUM.

The city of the same name in the province of Palermo, in Sicily ( Italy ), is situated nearly in the centre of the northern coast of the island. Destroyed by the inhabitants of Messina, it was reconstructed about 1130 by King Roger I of Sicily. Its first bishop was Nicetas who, in 869, assisted at the Eighth General council held at Constantinople for the trial of Photius. When Roger I rebuilt the city, Tocelmo was bishop. Among its bishops were: Arduino II, suffered exile twice on account of his opposition to Frederic II; Nicolò (1352) died in the prison of Castel Grassario, and Fra Francesco of the ducal house of Gonzaga (d. 1587), founder of the first seminary opened in Sicily. The cathedral was built by Roger I, and, though often restored, is a fine monument of Norman architecture. The adjoining cloister, still kept in its primitive state, is remarkable for graceful columns adorned with sculptures and arabesques. The diocese is a suffragan of Palermo, it has 22 parishes, 300 secular clergy, 265 churches, chapels, and oratories, 160,320 inhabitants, and 24 houses of religious (women).

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