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Piedmont

Regione Piemonte
Piemonte.png
Capital Turin
President Mercedes Bresso
(DS-Union)
Provinces 8
Comuni 1,206
Area 25,399 km²
 - Ranked 2nd (8.4 %)
Population (2006 est.)
 - Total

 - Ranked
 - Density


4,341,733
6th (7.4 %)
171/km²
Italy Regions Piedmont Map.png
Map highlighting the location of Piedmont in Italy


Piedmont (Italian: Piemonte) is a region of northwestern Italy. It has an area of 25,399 km2 and a population of est. 4.3 million. Its capital is Turin.

Piedmont is surrounded on three sides by the Alps mountain range, including the Monviso, where the Po River rises, and Monte Rosa. It borders with France, Switzerland, and the Italian regions of Lombardy, Liguria, Emilia-Romagna, and the Aosta Valley.

Lowland Piedmont is a fertile agricultural region, producing wheat, rice, maize, and wine grapes. It is widely recognized as one of Italy's three premier wine producing regions (along with Tuscany and the Veneto). Among the famous and prized wines of the Piemonte are Barolo, Barbaresco, Barbera, Dolcetto, Ruché, and Brachetto. The region also contains major industrial centres, notably Turin, home to the FIAT automobile works.

In February 2006 Turin hosted the XX Olympic Winter Games.

Provinces

Provinces of Piedmont

Piedmont is divided into 8 provinces:





History

In 1046, the counts of the House of Savoy added Piedmont to their main territory of Savoy, with a capital at Chambéry (now in France). The House of Savoy was elevated to a duchy in 1416, and Duke Emanuele Filiberto moved the seat to Turin in 1563. In 1720, the Duke of Savoy became King of Sardinia, founding what evolved into the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia and increasing Turin's importance as a European capital.

The Republic of Alba was created in 1796 as a French client republic in Piedmont before the area was annexed by France in 1801. In June 1802 a new client republic, the Subalpine Republic, was established in Piedmont and in September it was also annexed. In the congress of Vienna, the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia was restored, and furthermore received the Republic of Genoa to strengthen it as a barrier against France.

Piedmont was the springboard for Italy's unification in 1859-1861, following earlier unsuccessful wars against the Austrian Empire in 1820-1821 and 1848-1849. The House of Savoy became Kings of Italy, and Turin briefly became the capital of Italy. However, the addition of territory paradoxically reduced Piedmont's importance to the kingdom, and the capital was removed to Florence, and then to Rome. One remaining recognition of Piedmont's historical role was that the crown prince of Italy was known as the Prince of Piedmont.

Municipalities

In total the region of Piedmont has 1206 communes.

Notable people from Piedmont

Other

A "piedmont" is a foothill, and "piedmont" has become a generic designation for foothill regions in geography.

7.6% of the territory is protected area, 56 different ones of which the most famous national park is Gran Paradiso.

Piedmont is one of the great winegrowing regions in Italy. More than half of its 700 km² (170,000 acres) of vineyards are registered with DOC designations. It produces wines of renowned depth such as the famed Barbera, Barolo, Barbaresco and Moscato, as well as lesser known varieties such as Dolcetto, Freisa, Grignolino and Brachetto.

Apart from the provincial capitals, other notable cities are Casale Monferrato, Valenza, Stresa, Moncalieri, Rivoli, Ivrea, Novi Ligure, Tortona, Acqui Terme, Dronero, Roccabruna o Rocia, Alba.

See also

External links

Government agencies

Specialty sites

Tourism portals



Regions of Italy
AbruzzoAosta ValleyApuliaBasilicataCalabriaCampaniaEmilia-RomagnaFriuli-Venezia GiuliaLazioLiguriaLombardyMarcheMolisePiedmontSardiniaSicilyTrentino-South TyrolTuscanyUmbriaVeneto