Matera (mätĕ´rä), city (1991 pop. 54,919), capital of Matera prov., in Basilicata, S Italy, in the Apennines. It is an agricultural and industrial center with woolen textile mills and ceramics and food-processing factories. A Romanesque cathedral (13th cent.) and a castle (16th cent.) are in the city, and Matera's old section contains the Sassi, cave dwellings whose use in some cases may date to the Neolithic.