The town is located in the northwestern province of Enna, at the foott of Serra del Bosco, in the valley of the rivers Salso and Dittaino, among the towns of Nicosia, Gagliano Castelferrato, Agira, Assoro and Leonforte.
Scholars are mostly agree to compare the name with the Medieval Greek term Sunoría (“contiguity”, “neighborhood”) and with the bovese Sinòri (“border”).
The history of the town is linked to two different areas of its territory. The sunny plateau, in the middle of green valleys, situated in the present town, and the district now called “Tower”, that since the sixth century gave ospitality to ʼNysura, a colony founded by immigrants of Eastern ancestry who introduced the cult of St. Gregory, Patriarch of the Armenians, that was revered patron of Nissoria until April 28th, 1855.
The presence of substantial remains of fortification (XIII century) and the discovery, that occurred in 1953, of splendid finds of gold Byzantine (sixth-seventh century) described in the Proceedings of the Academy of the Lincei, confirm the importance of the website.
The Arabs, almost certainly in 861, subdued the Qalat Musarìah that was subsequently assigned – by the Count Roger – to the bishop of Troina. In 1095-1096, the jurisdiction passed to the Bishop of Messina and was governed by the Basilians that – even in 1309 – worked with the collection of the tithes of the hamlet Nysura, mistakenly referred to the name Nagaria.
Federico II, probably during the rivalry with the Holy See, gave to the church, the right of the tithes, but gave also the territorial government to the lay nobility of the island. With him began the official chronology of the families to whom was granted the possession and, with it, the privileges of the 24 estates of the homonymous “Noble Barony” and of the village Nysura, whose name will change slowly to Nissoria.
The chronology begins with Virgilio De Catania, considered the architect of the last alterations made to the fortification of the Contrada Torre. Later, there were De Sano, De Marchisio, Ventimiglia and Moncada that, in order to facilitate the colonization and the consequent exploitation of some vast uncultivated areas in the eastern side of the Barony, in the year 1746 – thanks to Francesco Rodrigo Moncada Ventimiglia Aragona, Prince of Paternò – began the foundation of the present Nissoria.
The artistic heritage includes evidences relating to the culture of the past centuries. We must mention the Cathedral, built in the modern era, which has a high façade ending with a bell loggia with three arches and the church dedicated to St. Joseph, in which there are beautiful paintings by Guglielmo Borremans.
The territory, fertile and productive thanks to the wealth of springs, characterized by a dense and woody vegetation, has an irregular geometrical profile and its variations in height are very marked: it is possible to reach 1,000 meters above sea level. The town, located on a high hill surrounded by some rivers, has an eighteenth-century structure, with regular streets defined by two orthogonal axes that meet in a square; its altimetry is regular.
The primary economic sector is present with various crops, cereals, wheat, vegetables, fodder, vines, olive trees, citrus fruits and fruits, and livestock, in particular cattle, pigs, sheep, goats and horses.
We must mention the production of the loaf from Val Dittaino PDO.
The secondary sector can count on the presence of small and medium size companies that operate, mainly, in the following sections: food, metallurgy, building materials and construction.
The service sector offers a good sales network and some skilled services.
The reception facilities offer only catering.
Among the most important and recurring events there are the evocative rites of the Holy Week; the General Fair and the food and wine event, with the exposure of wheat, grapes, olives and fruit in May, and the fair of August.
The patron, St. Joseph, is celebrated on the first Sunday of August.