The region with the capital Palermo is the largest in Italy with a land area of 25,703 km² and also the largest island in the Mediterranean. It also includes the island of Pantelleria to the southwest and the Lipari Islands to the northeast. The Greeks founded several colonies on Sicily from the 8th century BC. They named it Trinacria after its triangular shape. Later they gave it its definitive name after the Siculi mountain people. They brought with them their viticultural techniques and vines, including the ancient Eugenia and Murgentina varieties. These were later brought to central Italy and planted. Murgentina, as the "Pompeian grape", thrived particularly well on the volcanic soil on the slopes of Vesuvius in Pompeii and in the ancient Etruscan city of Clusium (Chiusi in Tuscany). The cities of Syracuse and Taormina (on Etna) developed into flourishing wine trading centres. There is documentary evidence of vineyards from the settlement of Akragas (Agrigento) from the 5th century BC. Sicily played an important role in the development of Italian viticulture.
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