Salerno

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Salerno
Comune
Comune di Salerno
Panorama of Salerno
Panorama of Salerno
Flag of Salerno
Flag
Coat of arms of Salerno
Coat of arms
Salerno within the Province of Salerno and Campania
Salerno within the Province of Salerno and Campania
Salerno is located in Italy
Salerno
Salerno
Location of Salerno in Italy
Coordinates: 40°41′0″N 14°46′0″E / 40.68333°N 14.76667°E / 40.68333; 14.76667Coordinates: 40°41′0″N 14°46′0″E / 40.68333°N 14.76667°E / 40.68333; 14.76667
CountryItaly
RegionCampania
ProvinceSalerno (SA)
Founded197 BC
Government
 • MayorVincenzo De Luca (PD)
Area
 • Total58.96 km2 (22.76 sq mi)
Elevation4 m (13 ft)
Population (30 November 2013)[1]
 • Total131,371
 • Density2,200/km2 (5,800/sq mi)
DemonymSalernitani
Time zoneCET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST)CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code84121 to 84135
Dialing code089
Patron saintSaint Matthew
WebsiteOfficial website
 
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For other uses, see Salerno (disambiguation).
Salerno
Comune
Comune di Salerno
Panorama of Salerno
Panorama of Salerno
Flag of Salerno
Flag
Coat of arms of Salerno
Coat of arms
Salerno within the Province of Salerno and Campania
Salerno within the Province of Salerno and Campania
Salerno is located in Italy
Salerno
Salerno
Location of Salerno in Italy
Coordinates: 40°41′0″N 14°46′0″E / 40.68333°N 14.76667°E / 40.68333; 14.76667Coordinates: 40°41′0″N 14°46′0″E / 40.68333°N 14.76667°E / 40.68333; 14.76667
CountryItaly
RegionCampania
ProvinceSalerno (SA)
Founded197 BC
Government
 • MayorVincenzo De Luca (PD)
Area
 • Total58.96 km2 (22.76 sq mi)
Elevation4 m (13 ft)
Population (30 November 2013)[1]
 • Total131,371
 • Density2,200/km2 (5,800/sq mi)
DemonymSalernitani
Time zoneCET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST)CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code84121 to 84135
Dialing code089
Patron saintSaint Matthew
WebsiteOfficial website

Salerno About this sound listen  is a city and comune in Campania (south-western Italy) and is the capital of the province of the same name. It is located on the Gulf of Salerno on the Tyrrhenian Sea.

Salerno is the main town close to the Amalfi Coast, and is mostly known for its Schola Medica Salernitana, the first medical school in the world. In the 16th century, under the Sanseverino family, among the most powerful feudal lords in Southern Italy, the city became a great centre of learning, culture and the arts, and the family hired several of the greatest intellectuals of the time.[2] Later, in 1694, the city was struck by several catastrophic earthquakes and plagues,[2] and afterwards a period of Spanish rule which would last until the 18th century. After that, Salerno became part of the Parthenopean Republic and saw a period of Napoleonic rule.[2]

In recent history the city hosted the King of Italy, who moved from Rome in 1943 after Italy negotiated a peace with the Allies in World War II. A brief so-called "government of the South" was then established in the town, that became the "capital" of Italy for some months. Some of the Allied landings during Operation Avalanche (the invasion of Italy) occurred near Salerno.

Today Salerno is an important cultural centre in Campania and Italy and has had a long and eventful history. The city has a rich and varied culture, and the city is divided into three distinct regions: the medieval sector with a modern state-of-the arts area, the planned 19th century district and the more densely populated post-war area, with its several apartment blocks.[2]

History[edit]

Prehistory and antiquity[edit]

The area of what is now Salerno has been continuously settled since pre-historical times, although the first certain signs of human presence date to the period between the 9th and 6th centuries BC. We know the Oscan-Etruscan city of Irna (founded in the 6th century BC), situated across the Irno river, in what is today the quarter of Fratte. This settlement represented an important base for Etruscan trade with the Greek colonies of Posidonia and Elea. It was occupied by the Samnites around the 5th century BC as consequence of the Battle of Cumae (474 BC) as part of the Syracusan sphere of influence.

With the Roman advance in Campania, Irna began to lose its importance, being supplanted by the new Roman colony (197 BC) of Salernum, developing around an initial castrum. The new city, which gradually lost its military function in favour of its role as a trade center, was connected to Rome by the Via Popilia, which ran towards Lucania and Reggio Calabria.

Archaeological remains, although fragmentary, suggest the idea of a flourishing and lively city. Under the Emperor Diocletian, in the late 3rd century AD, Salernum became the administrative centre of the "Lucania and Bruttii" province.

In the following century, during the Gothic Wars, the Goths were defeated by the Byzantines, and the Salerno briefly returned to the control of Constantinople (from 553 to 568), before the Lombards invaded almost the whole peninsula. Like many coastal cities of southern Italy (Gaeta, Sorrento, Amalfi), Salerno initially remained untouched by the newcomers, falling only in 646. It subsequently became part of the Duchy of Benevento.

The Principality of Salerno in 1000.

Middle Ages to early modern[edit]

Under the Lombard dukes Salerno enjoyed the most splendid period of its history.

In 774 Arechis II of Benevento transferred the seat of the Duchy of Benevento to Salerno, in order to elude Charlemagne's offensive and to secure for himself the control of a strategic area, the centre of coastal and internal communications in Campania.

With Arechis II, Salerno became a centre of studies with its famous Medical School. The Lombard prince ordered the city to be fortified; the Castle on the Bonadies mountain had already been built with walls and towers. In 839 Salerno declared independence from Benevento, becoming the capital of a flourishing principality stretching out to Capua, northern Calabria and Apulia up to Taranto.

Around the year 1000 prince Guaimar IV annexed Amalfi, Sorrento, Gaeta and the whole duchy of Apulia and Calabria, starting to conceive a future unification of the whole southern Italy under Salerno's arms. The coins minted in the city circulated in all the Mediterranean, with the Opulenta Salernum wording to certify its richness.

However, the stability of the Principate was continually shaken by the Saracen attacks and, most of all, by internal struggles. In 1056, one of the numerous plots led to the fall of Guaimar. His weaker son Gisulf II succeeded him, but the decline of the principality had begun. In 1077 Salerno reached its zenith but soon lost all its territory to the Normans.

The Schola Medica Salernitana in a miniature from Avicenna's Canon.

On December 13, 1076 the Norman conqueror Robert Guiscard, who had married Guaimar IV's daughter Sikelgaita, besieged Salerno and defeated his brother-in-law Gisulf. In this period the royal palace of Castel Terracena and the cathedral were built, and science was boosted as the Schola Medica Salernitana, considered the most ancient medical institution of European West, reached its maximum splendour. At this time in the late 1000s the city was home to 50,000 people.[3]

Salerno played a conspicuous part in the fall of the Norman kingdom. After the Emperor Henry VI's invasion on behalf of his wife, Constance, the heiress to the kingdom, in 1191, Salerno surrendered and promised loyalty on the mere news of an incoming army. This so disgusted the archbishop, Nicholas of Ajello, that he abandoned the city and fled to Naples, which held out in a siege. In 1194, the situation reversed itself: Naples capitulated, along with most other cities of the Mezzogiorno, and only Salerno resisted. It was sacked and pillaged, much reducing its importance and prosperity. Henry had his reasons, though. He had entrusted Constance to the citizens and they had betrayed him and handed her over to king Tancred of Sicily. Her combined treachery and stubbornness cost Salerno much after the Hohenstaufen conquest. Henry's son, Frederick II, moreover, issued a series of edicts that reduced Salerno's role in favour of Naples (in particular, the foundation of the University of Naples in that city).

Salerno in a print from the 17th century.

From the 14th century onwards, most of the Salerno province became the territory of the Princes of Sanseverino, powerful feudal lords who acted as real owners of the region. They accumulated an enormous political and administrative power and attracted artists and men of letters in their own princely palace. In the 15th century the city was the scene of battles between the Angevin and the Catalan-Aragonese royal houses with whom the local lords took sides alternatingly.

In the first decades of the 16th century the last descendent of the Sanseverino princes, Ferdinando Sanseverino, was in conflict with the viceroy of the king of Spain, mainly because of his opposition to the Inquisition, causing the ruin of the whole family and the beginning of a long period of decadence for the city.

A slow renewal of the city occurred in the 18th century with the end of the Spanish dominion and the construction of many refined houses and churches characterising the main streets of the historical centre. In 1799 Salerno was incorporated into the Parthenopean Republic. During the Napoleonic era, first Joseph Bonaparte and then Joachim Murat ascended the Neapolitan throne. The latter decreed the closing of the Schola Medica Salernitana, that had been declining for decades to the level of a theoretical school. In the same period even the religious orders were suppressed and numerous ecclesiastical properties were confiscated.

The city expanded beyond the ancient walls and sea connections were potentiated as they represented an important road network that crossed the town connecting the eastern plain with the area leading to Vietri and Naples.

Late modern and contemporary[edit]

Salerno was an active center of Carbonari activities supporting the unification of Italy in the 19th century.[4] The majority of the population of Salerno supported ideas of the Risorgimento, and in 1861 many of them joined Garibaldi in his struggle for unification.[5]

After the unification of Italy a slow urban development continued, many suburban areas were enlarged and large public and private buildings were created. The city went on developing till the Second World War. Its population rose from 20,000 people around 1861s unification to 80,000 in the early 20th century.

During 19th century foreign industries started settling in Salerno: in 1830 a first textile mill was established by the Swiss entrepreneur Züblin Vonwiller, followed by Schlaepfer-Wenner's textile mills and dye factories; the Wenner family settled permanently in Salerno. In 1877 the city was the site of as many as 21 textile mills employing around ten thousand workers; in comparison with the four thousand employed in Turin's textile industry, Salerno was sometimes referred to as the "Manchester of the two Sicilies".

The Allied landing at Salerno (September 1943).

In September 1943, Salerno was the scene of the Operation Avalanche and suffered a great deal of damage. From February 12 to July 17, 1944, it hosted the Government of Marshal Pietro Badoglio. In those months Salerno was the temporary capital of the Kingdom of Italy, and the King Victor Emmanuel III lived in a mansion in its outskirts.

After the war the population of the city doubled in a few years, going from 80,000 in 1946 to nearly 160,000 in 1976.

Geography[edit]

The city is situated at the north-western end of the plain of the Sele river, at the exact beginning of the Amalfi coast. The small river Irno crosses through the central section of Salerno. The highest point is Monte Stella with its 953 metres (3,127 ft).[6]

Climate[edit]

Salerno has a Mediterranean climate, with a hot and relatively dry summer (30 °C (86 °F) in August) and a rainy fall and winter (8 °C (46 °F) in January). Usually there is nearly 1,000 mm (39 in) of rain every year. The strong wind that comes from the mountains toward the Gulf of Salerno makes the city very windy (mainly in winter). However, this gives Salerno the advantage of being one of the sunniest towns in Italy.

Demographics[edit]

In 2007, there were 140,580 people residing in Salerno, located in the province of Salerno, Campania, of whom 46.7% were male and 53.3% were female. Minors (children ages 18 and younger) totalled 19.61 percent of the population compared to pensioners who number 21.86 percent. This compares with the Italian average of 18.06 percent (minors) and 19.94 percent (pensioners). The average age of Salerno residents is 42 compared to the Italian average of 42. In the five years between 2002 and 2007, the population of Salerno grew by 2.02 percent, while Italy as a whole grew by 3.85 percent.[7] The current birth rate of Catania is 7.77 births per 1,000 inhabitants compared to the Italian average of 9.45 births.

As of 31 December 2010, there were 4,355 foreigners in Salerno. The largest immigrant group came from other European countries (particularly from Ukraine and Romania).[8] The population is overwhelmingly Roman Catholic.

Economy[edit]

The economy of Salerno is mainly based on services and tourism, as most of the city's manufacturing base did not survive the economic crisis of the 1970s. The remaining ones are connected to pottery and food production and treatment.

The Port of Salerno is one of the most active of the Tyrrhenian Sea. It handles about 10 million tons of cargo per year, 60% of which is made up by containers.[9]

Transport[edit]

Salerno is connected to the Autostrada A3 and Autostrada A30 motorways.

Salerno station is the main railway station of the city. It is connected to the high-speed railway network via the Milan-Salerno corridor.

A metropolitan railway service connects the station with Stadio Arechi.[10]

Salerno airport is located in the neighboring towns of Pontecagnano Faiano and Bellizzi.

Education[edit]

Salerno hosted the oldest medical school in the world, the Schola Medica Salernitana, the most important source of medical knowledge in Europe in the early Middle Ages. It was closed in 1811 by Joachim Murat.

In 1944 king Vittorio Emanuele III established Istituto Universitario di Magistero "Giovanni Cuomo". In 1968 the university became state-controlled.[11] Today University of Salerno is located in the neighboring town of Fisciano and has about 34,000 students[12] and ten faculties: Arts and Philosophy, Economics, Education, Engineering, Foreign language and literature, Law, Mathematics, Physics and Natural Sciences, Medicine, Pharmacy and Political Science.[13]

Sports[edit]

The city's main football team is U.S. Salernitana 1919, that plays in Lega Pro Prima Divisione. Its home stadium is Stadio Arechi.

The most successful team in the city is the women's handball team PDO Handball Team Salerno, with its four national titles, four national cups and two national supercups.

Attractions[edit]

Main tourist sites of Salerno.

Salerno is located at the geographical center of a triangle nicknamed Tourist Triangle of the 3 P (namely a triangle with the corners in Pompei, Paestum and Positano). This peculiarity gives Salerno special tourist characteristics that are increased by the many local points of tourist interest like the Lungomare Trieste (Trieste Seafront Promenade), the Castello di Arechi (Arechis' Castle), the Duomo (cathedral) and the Museo Didattico della Scuola Medica Salernitana (Educational Museum of the Salernitan Medical School).[14]

Lay sights[edit]

"Lungomare Trieste" promenade.
The "Teatro Verdi". In the background—on a hill—can be seen the "Castle of Arechis"

Churches[edit]

Ambone D'Ajello, a pulpit inside the Salerno Cathedral.
The Natività (Nativity) of Andrea Sabbatini (called "Andrea da Salerno" when he worked in the Cappella Sistina) can be seen inside the "Palazzo Pinto" of the "Pinacoteca Provinciale".
The bell tower of the Cathedral. Inside the Duomo of Salerno is the tomb of the Apostle Matthew.
The port of Salerno.
Via Botteghelle in the old Lombard area.

Monuments[edit]

Museums and galleries[edit]

Archaeological sites[edit]

Twin towns — Sister cities[edit]

Salerno is twinned with:

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bilancio demografico Anno 2013 (dati provvisori) Comune: Salerno". ISTAT (in Italian). 2013. Retrieved 6 May 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c d "Salerno - History, art and culture". 
  3. ^ Bairoch, Paul. Cities and Economic Development: From the Dawn of History to the Present. p. 161. Retrieved 9 May 2014. 
  4. ^ Carmine Pinto (13 December 2010). "La rivoluzione vittoriosa e la nascita di un nuovo Stato". la Città (in Italian). Retrieved 9 May 2014. 
  5. ^ Seton-Watson, "Italy from Liberalism to Fascism, 1870–1925".
  6. ^ "Aggiornamento della carta dei vincoli" (PDF). comune.salerno.it (in Italian). 2011. p. 3. Retrieved 14 May 2014. 
  7. ^ http://demo.istat.it/bil2007/index.html
  8. ^ "Cittadini Stranieri. Bilancio demografico anno 2010 e popolazione residente al 31 Dicembre - Tutti i paesi di cittadinanza Comune: Salerno". ISTAT (in Italian). 2010. Retrieved 12 May 2014. 
  9. ^ "Autorità Portuale di Salerno - Traffici Commerciali 2009-2013". porto.salerno.it (in Italian). Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  10. ^ "Metropolitana di Salerno". metrosalerno.com (in Italian). 2014. Retrieved 10 August 2014. 
  11. ^ "A short history of the university". unisa.it. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  12. ^ "Anagrafe Nazionale Studenti - Iscritti 2012/2013". MIUR (in Italian). 7 March 2014. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  13. ^ "Course organization". unisa.it. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  14. ^ "I rioni del centro storico" (in Italian). 
  15. ^ "Gemellaggio tra Salerno e la città giapponese di Tono". comune.salerno.it (in Italian). 4 March 2012. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  16. ^ "Salerno e Rouen unite da Linea d'ombra". la Repubblica (in Italian). 3 March 2004. 
  17. ^ "SALERNO - DOMANI IMPORTANTE GEMELLAGGIO MEDICO-SPECIALISTICO". informazione.campania.it (in Italian). Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  18. ^ "La presentazione in occasione del gemellaggio Baltimora-Salerno. La struttura diretta da Fasano L' iniziativa". la Repubblica (in Italian). 16 December 2008. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  19. ^ "Gemellaggio interculturale Salerno-Pazardzhik (Bulgaria)". comune.salerno.it (in Italian). 27 September 2011. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 
  20. ^ "La Lega sbarca al sud. Scambio con Salerno". L'Arena (in Italian). 23 July 2011. Retrieved 8 May 2014. 

Bibliography[edit]

External links[edit]