In the Ascea area is the ancient Greek village of Elea that was home to the philosophical schools of Parmenides & Zenones. Elea was founded around 540 BC. One of the most important branches of Greek Philosophy, the Eleatica School, was founded in Elea and two of its major exponents were Parmenide and Zenone.
Elea changed its name to Velia after conquest by the Romans. Thanks to its mild climate and stunning landscape, many illustrious Romans had summer villas here- among them Cicero and Horace. Eventually, due to a combination of devastating floods, barbarian invasions and a variety of other disasters over the centuries, Velia declined in importance.