The village has changed over time different names, from the Greek "Akerontia", through the early Medieval "Akerentia" or "Acerenthia", up to the current one of Old Cerenzia (KR). The village, which once reached a population of 7.000 inhabitants, was gradually abandoned as a result of epidemics and natural disasters. The plague of 1528 came to halve the population; in later centuries, two earthquakes decreed the end: the first in 1638, which led to a substantial emigration, the second in 1783, so catastrophic as to induce the people to build a town from scratch, on the hill above it, rather than restore the ancient village. Following the abandonment, Acerenthia underwent a fast and progressive deterioration, in the shape of a real "ghost town". Today, after a century and a half of neglect, the ruins are the subject of excavations and research conducted by the Superintendence for Archaeological Heritage of Calabria (in 2007 was carried out the excavation of the so-called Prince's Palace).