Butera is an Italian town and a comune in the province of Caltanissetta, in the southern part of the island of Sicily.
The origins of Butera date back to the Early Bronze Age. During the 6th century BC, the town was abandoned and was rebuilt only during the period of Timoleon, shortly after the middle of the fourth century BC It was, however, a small village inhabited by farmers, subject to external aggression throughout the early Middle Ages. Butera, being situated close to Gela, one of the most prominent ancient Greek cities of Sicily under Magna Graecia, was itself settled by Greeks, especially from Crete. Following Butera’s conquest by the Normans, it became an important Lombard town and indeed was the capital of the prominent County of Butera under the Aleramici, a noble Northwest Italian family of Frankish origin, as well as the Alagona, an Aragonese family, from 1089 to 1392.
In 1392, the Alagona family lost possession of the County following their defeat by Martin I, and was passed to the Catalan prince Ugo of Santapau. In 1543, Ambrogio Santapa was nominated Prince of Butera, after defeating Hayreddin Barbarossa, the Ottoman pirate. Up until the 19th century, this was Sicily’s main feudal title.