The history of the Noto has its roots in prehistory, as evidenced by the finds in its territory and the necropolis with numerous caves carved out by the Siculi. At the end of the ninth century, Noto was conquered by the Muslims. Under the Arabs, the city became a stronghold of the most equipped in Sicily. The advent of the Normans, made Noto a town of cultural and economic prosperity that would not be equaled in later centuries. Between the sixteenth and the seventeenth century, despite famine and pestilence, Noto transforms its medieval town by erecting new buildings, churches, convents and plazas. With the earthquake of 11 January 1693, this process of growth stopped and the whole town was razed to the ground. Famous people were involved in the reconstruction, architects and many good master builders and masons who created the current Noto, an urban environment of rare beauty, an art city so full of charm that Blunt gave her the nickname "Garden of Stone" .