Situated on the Eastern slopes of the Murge, in a hilly zone Corato, according to some historians, has origins that date back to 201 BC, the period of the Punic Wars, when the territory was granted to the consul Caius Oratus, from which derives the city's name.
In 1250, when Charles of Anjou defeated Conrad of Suabi, the city of Corato remained loyal to the ruling Hohenstaufen and earned from him the nickname of 'cor sine labe doli' (heart without stain of treason), quotation cited in the arms of the city.
The village was characterized by four towers built by the Lombards and part of the defense, was also featured in a maze of alleys, connected one to each other by arches and underground passages, a feature still present in the historical center of town. Under the dominion of the Normans, Corato became a fortified city. Peter the Norman, encircled the town and the four towers with a wall punctuated by twenty-five towers and he also had a castle built, Palazzo Gioia.
Suabi and Angevin in 1409, pointed to improve the city's development, enforcing the processing industry and trade of wine, olive oil, almonds and skins.
In 1139, the Church of Santa Maria Maggiore was built and features a medieval pointed arch portal which contains the depiction of Christ blessing. The present state of the church is determined by the massive restoration made in 1863, that led to a heightening of the nave and changed the upper part of façade with the opening of two oculi windows and the achievement of the triangular pediment in tuff stone.
The Church of Maria Santissima (Holy Mary) dell'Incoronata was consecrated for worship in 1617, although the building works continued even thereafter. After the suppression of the Minor Observant's order and some years of neglect, the Church was rescued and reopened for worship in 1915. It is a single nave church with two entrances: one aligned with the apse and one on the left side.
Not to miss: the Church in the St. Benedict Monastery entitled to this Saint, built in 1627 on the site of an existing religious structure dedicated to Santa Maria Annunziata; the Church of San Vito, documented since 1206; Palazzo Capano; Palazzo Lamonica Vecchio; Palazzo de Mattis, Palazzo Catalano, Palazzo Gentile Griffi, Palazzo Spallucci, Palazzo Lamonica Nuovo and Palazzo di Città.