The river is born right near the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Canneto and probably has its name fromthe ancient pagan goddess Mephite of the ancient pre-Roman people of the Sannites.
Mephyton was the goddess of black water and clean water, probably the word ‘mephytic’, which indicates a particular strong smell, is connected to his worship that was made near to sulphurous water.
There is also an indication of the existence of an ancient pagan temple.
At the centre of the valley there is a large spring of Melfa with its lake. In the very cold water, you can see sparkles of mica and copper flecks that the pilgrims call the “Stellucce (Starry lights) of Our Lady”.