That the citizens of Agrigentum lived in comfort and well-being is nothing new.
First Akragas, then Agrigentum, was renowned for the wealth of its inhabitants and the remarkable decorations and works of art that adorned the city.
According to archaeologists, the wealth of the domus, and also of the necropolis of Agrigentum, was largely driven by the flourishing sulphur trade, extracted from the mines inland and transported throughout the Mediterranean from the city’s port.
The numerous tegulae sulphuris (clay tablets) found in the area suggest flourishing sulphur mining and trade activity during the Roman imperial age: the most documented workshop is that of the Annii, a gens from Campania, which exerted such an influence in Agrigentum that it was also mentioned in the inscription dedicated to the sons of Augustus, on the gymnasium seats.
Other archaeological finds in the area highlight the importance of this material for the Agrigentine territory starting from the 2nd millennium BC, in prehistoric times , until the moving literary testimony of exponents of Italian literature such as Giovanni Verga and Luigi Pirandello, who decided to recount the tragic living conditions of the sulphur miners in the quarries at the end of the 19th century.
In particular, Pirandello, originally from Porto Empedocle, decided to set his novel Ciàula scopre la luna (Ciàula discovers the moon) in the Taccia Caci sulphur mine where his father had worked.