Alessandria

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Alessandria

Lissandria  (Piedmontese)
Comune di Alessandria
Alessandria piazzaduomo.jpg
Alessandria Cathedral on the Piazza del Duomo
Flag of Alessandria.png
Flag
Alessandria-Stemma.png
Coat of arms
Location of Alessandria
Italy provincial location map 2015.svg
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Alessandria
Location of Alessandria in Piedmont
Italy Piemonte location map.svg
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Alessandria
Alessandria (Piedmont)
Coordinates: 44°55′N08°37′E / 44.917°N 8.617°E / 44.917; 8.617 Coordinates: 44°55′N08°37′E / 44.917°N 8.617°E / 44.917; 8.617
Country Italy
Region Piedmont
Province Alessandria (AL)
Frazioni Spinetta Marengo, Cantalupo, Casalbagliano, Cascina Morione, Cascinagrossa, Castelceriolo, Cornaglie, Cristo, Filippona, Gerlotti, Litta Parodi, Lobbi, Mandrogne, Molinetto, Orti, Pagella, Porrona, Profumati, San Giuliano, San Giuliano Nuovo, San Giuliano Vecchio, San Michele, Settimio, Valle San Bartolomeo, Valmadonna, Villa Del Foro
Government
  Mayor Gianfranco Cuttica di Revigliasco (Lega Nord)
Area
  Total204 km2 (79 sq mi)
Elevation
95 m (312 ft)
Population
(1-1-2017)
  Total93,839
  Density460/km2 (1,200/sq mi)
Demonyms Alessandrini, nickname: Mandrogni
Time zone UTC+1 (CET)
  Summer (DST) UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
15121–15122
Dialing code 0131
Patron saint San Baudolino
Saint dayNovember 10
Website Official website

Alessandria (Italian pronunciation:  [alesˈsandrja] ( Loudspeaker.svg listen ); Piedmontese : Lissandria [liˈsɑŋdrja] ) is a city and comune in Piedmont, Italy, and the capital of the Province of Alessandria. The city is sited on the alluvial plain between the Tanaro and the Bormida rivers, about 90 kilometres (56 miles) southeast of Turin.

Piedmontese language Romance language spoken mainly in Italy

Piedmontese is a Romance language spoken by some 700,000 people mostly in Piedmont, northwestern region of Italy. It is geographically and linguistically included in the Gallo-Italic languages group of Northern Italy. It is part of the wider western group of Romance languages, which also includes French, Occitan, and Catalan. It is spoken in Piedmont, Liguria and Lombardy.

<i>Comune</i> third-level administrative divisions of the Italian Republic

The comune is a basic administrative division in Italy, roughly equivalent to a township or municipality.

Province of Alessandria Province of Italy

The Province of Alessandria is an Italian province, with a population of some 425,000, which forms the southeastern part of the region of Piedmont. The provincial capital is the city of Alessandria.

Contents

Alessandria is also a major railway hub.

History

Alessandria was founded in 1168 with a charter as a free comune; it was sited upon a preexisting urban nucleus, to serve as a stronghold for the Lombard League, defending the traditional liberties of the communes of northern Italy against the Imperial forces of Frederick Barbarossa. Alessandria stood in the territories of the marchese of Montferrat, a staunch ally of the Emperor, with a name assumed in 1168 to honor the Emperor's opponent, Pope Alexander III. In 1174–1175 the fortress was sorely tested by Imperial siege and stood fast. A legend (related in Umberto Eco's book Baudolino , and which recalls one concerning Bishop Herculanus’ successful defense of Perugia several centuries earlier) says it was saved by a quick-witted peasant, Gagliaudo: he fed his cow with the last grain remaining within the city, then took it outside the city walls until he reached the Imperial camp. Here he was captured, and his cow cut open to be cooked: when the Imperials found the cow's stomach filled with grain, Gagliaudo was asked the reason to waste such a rich meal. He answered that he was forced to feed his cow with grain because there was such a lot of it, and no room to place it within the city. The Emperor, fearing that the siege would last too long, left Alessandria free (malaria was probably the real cause of his departure). A statue of Gagliaudo can be found on the left corner of the city cathedral.

Lombard League

The Lombard League was a medieval alliance formed in 1167, supported by the Pope, to counter the attempts by the Hohenstaufen Holy Roman Emperors to assert influence over the Kingdom of Italy as a part of the Holy Roman Empire. At its apex, it included most of the cities of Northern Italy, but its membership changed with time. With the death of the third and last Hohenstaufen emperor, Frederick II, in 1250, it became obsolete and was disbanded.

Medieval commune

Medieval communes in the European Middle Ages had sworn allegiances of mutual defense among the citizens of a town or city. These took many forms and varied widely in organization and makeup.

Northern Italy geographic region of Italy

Northern Italy is a geographical region in the northern part of Italy. Non-administrative, it consists of eight administrative Regions in northern Italy: Aosta Valley, Piedmont, Liguria, Lombardy, Emilia-Romagna, Veneto, Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol. As of 2014, its population was 27,801,460. Rhaeto-Romance and Gallo-Italic languages are spoken in the region, as opposed to the Italo-Dalmatian languages spoken in the rest of Italy.

Alessandria entered into jealous conflicts with the older communes of the region, in particular with Asti. [1]

Asti Comune in Piedmont, Italy

Asti is a city and comune of 76,164 inhabitants (1-1-2017) located in the Piedmont region of northwestern Italy, about 55 kilometres east of Turin in the plain of the Tanaro River. It is the capital of the province of Asti and it is deemed to be the modern capital of Monferrato.

In 1348 Alessandria fell into the hands of the Visconti and passed with their possessions to the Sforza, following the career of Milan, until 1707, when it was ceded to the House of Savoy and henceforth formed part of Piedmont. The new domination was evidenced by the construction of a new big Cittadella on the left side of the river Tanaro, across from the city.

Milan Italian city

Milan is a city in northern Italy, capital of Lombardy, and the second-most populous city in Italy after Rome, with the city proper having a population of 1,372,810 while its metropolitan area has a population of 3,244,365. Its continuously built-up urban area has a population estimated to be about 5,270,000 over 1,891 square kilometres. The wider Milan metropolitan area, known as Greater Milan, is a polycentric metropolitan region that extends over central Lombardy and eastern Piedmont and which counts an estimated total population of 7.5 million, making it by far the largest metropolitan area in Italy and the 54th largest in the world. Milan served as capital of the Western Roman Empire from 286 to 402 and the Duchy of Milan during the medieval period and early modern age.

House of Savoy noble family

The House of Savoy is a royal family that was established in 1003 in the historical Savoy region. Through gradual expansion, the family grew in power from ruling a small county in the Alps north-west of Italy to absolute rule of the kingdom of Sicily in 1713 to 1720. Through its junior branch, the House of Savoy-Carignano, it led the unification of Italy in 1861 and ruled the Kingdom of Italy from 1861 until 1946 and, briefly, the Kingdom of Spain in the 19th century. The Savoyard kings of Italy were Victor Emmanuel II, Umberto I, Victor Emmanuel III, and Umberto II. The last monarch ruled for a few weeks before being deposed following the Constitutional Referendum of 1946, after which the Italian Republic was proclaimed.

With Napoleon's success at the Battle of Marengo (1800), Alessandria fell to France and became the capital of the Napoleonic Département of Marengo. During this period another substantial fort was built to the north of the city containing impressive and substantial barracks which are still used as a military headquarters and stores (2006). The remains of a second fort to the south of the city (Cristo quarter) have been sliced in two by a railway (Forte ferrovia); a third one still remains in the middle of the same quarter (Forte Acqui).

From 1814 Alessandria was Savoyard territory once more, part of the Kingdom of Sardinia. During the years of the Risorgimento, Alessandria was an active center of the liberals.

Kingdom of Sardinia former Italian state (1324–1861)

The Kingdom of Sardinia was a state in Southern Europe from the early 14th until the mid-19th century.

In a suburb, Spinetta Marengo, the Battle of Marengo is reenacted annually, on June 14.

Alessandria was the first capital of an Italian province to be governed by a Socialist: the clockmaker Paolo Sacco was elected mayor on July 25, 1899.

Alessandria was a tactical military target during World War II and was subjected to intense Allied bombing, the most serious being the raids of April 30, 1944, with 238 dead and hundreds wounded, and April 5, 1945, with 160 deaths, among them 60 children from the children's asylum in Via Gagliaudo. On end of that month the city was liberated from the German occupation (1943–1945) by the partisan resistance and troops of Brazilian Expeditionary Force.

On November 6, 1994 the Tanaro flooded a good part of the city, causing major damage, especially in the Orti quarter.

Jewish history

The first known Jews in Alessandria, named Abraham (son of Joseph Vitale de Sacerdoti Cohen) opened a loan bank in or about 1490. [2] In 1590, the Jews were expelled from the Duchy of Milan, and one of Abraham's descendants travelled to Madrid, which ruled the Duchy, and was permitted to stay in the town due to a large sum owed him by the government. Of the 230 Jews living in the city in 1684, 170 were members of the Vitale family. The Jewish Ghetto was established in 1724. Between 1796 and 1814, among the rest of Italian Jewry, the city Jewish congregation was emancipated, under French influence. According to Benito Mussolini's census in 1938, the town had 101 Jews. [2] On December 13, 1943, The synagogue on Via Milano was attacked by supporters of the Italian Social Republic. Books and manuscripts were taken out of the synagogue and were set on fire at Piazza Rattazzi. In total, 48 Jews were sent from the province of Alessandria to death, most of them in Auschwitz. [2]

Geography

Climate

Alessandria is located in a humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate classification Cfa), the city has moderately cold winters and hot, sultry summers. Rainfall is moderate, with two minimums (summer and winter) and two maximums in autumn and spring.

Climate data for Alessandria
MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecYear
Average high °C (°F)3.2
(37.8)
6.6
(43.9)
12.6
(54.6)
17.7
(63.8)
22.4
(72.3)
26.7
(80.1)
29.5
(85.1)
28.6
(83.5)
24.1
(75.4)
16.9
(62.5)
9.4
(48.9)
4.4
(40.0)
16.8
(62.3)
Average low °C (°F)−2.4
(27.7)
−0.6
(31.0)
3.7
(38.6)
8.0
(46.4)
12.4
(54.3)
16.2
(61.1)
18.5
(65.3)
17.9
(64.2)
14.5
(58.1)
9.3
(48.7)
3.9
(39.1)
−0.4
(31.3)
8.4
(47.1)
Average precipitation mm (inches)38
(1.5)
37
(1.46)
54
(2.13)
64
(2.52)
60
(2.36)
47
(1.85)
32
(1.26)
36
(1.42)
43
(1.69)
74
(2.92)
72
(2.84)
46
(1.81)
603
(23.75)
Source: Intellicast [3]

Government

Main sights

Monuments

Museums

Events

Transport

Alessandria railway station, opened in 1850, forms part of the Turin–Genoa railway. It is also a junction for six other lines, to Piacenza, Novara, Pavia, Cavallermaggiore, Ovada and San Giuseppe di Cairo, respectively.

Sport

The town's professional football team is US Alessandria.

People born in Alessandria

Twin towns—Sister cities

Alessandria is twinned with:

See also

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Alessandria railway station railway station

Alessandria railway station serves the city and comune of Alessandria, in the Piedmont region, northwestern Italy. Opened in 1850, it forms part of the Turin–Genoa railway, and is also a junction for six other lines, to Chivasso, Piacenza, Novara, Pavia, Cavallermaggiore, Ovada and San Giuseppe di Cairo, respectively.

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References

  1. Wikisource-logo.svg Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Alessandria"  . Encyclopædia Britannica . 1 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 543.
  2. 1 2 3 "Alessandria". Encyclopaedia Judaica. The Gale Group. 2008.
  3. "Alessandria historic weather averages". The Casaccia Center of Enea. Retrieved 26 September 2009.
  4. "Città di Alessandria". www.comune.alessandria.it.
  5. Fraskettando SkaBluesJazz Festival official website. Archived 2011-05-12 at the Wayback Machine
  6. "Sito ufficiale del Moto Club Madonnina dei Centauri di Alessandria". www.mcmadonnina.it.
  7. "Town Twinning Agreements". Municipalidad de Rosario - Buenos Aires 711. Retrieved 2014-10-14.