Infobox CityIT

image_caption = The "Basilica Palladiana" in "Piazza dei Signori"
img_coa = Vicenza-Stemma.png official_name = Comune di Vicenza
name=Vicenza| mapx = 45.558|mapy=11.54
region = Veneto
province = Vicenza (VI)
elevation_m = 39
area_total_km2 = 80
population_as_of = January 1, 2007
population_total = 119038
population_density_km2 =1379.2
timezone = CET, UTC+1
coordinates = coord|45|33|N|11|33|E|region:IT_type:city(119038)|display=inline,title
frazioni = Anconetta, Bertesina, Bertesinella, Bugano, Campedello, Casale, Debba, Longara, Maddalene, Ospedaletto, Polegge, San Pietro Intrigogna, Santa Croce Bigolina, Tormeno
telephone = 0444
postalcode = 36100
gentilic = Vicentini
saint = Madonna of Monte Berico
day = September 8
mayor = Achille Variati
website = []

Infobox World Heritage Site
WHS = City of Vicenza and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto

State Party = ITA
Type = Cultural
Criteria = i, ii
ID = 712
Region = Europe and North America
Year = 1994
Session = 18th
Extension = 1996
Link =

Vicenza, a city in northern Italy, is the capital of the eponymous province in the Veneto region, at the northern base of the "Monte Berico", straddling the Bacchiglione. Vicenza is approximately 60 km west of Venice and 200 km east of Milan. As of 2007, Vicenza had an estimated population of 119,038.cite web | url= | title="The World Gazetteer" | accessdate=2007-02-21] Vicenza is the third largest Italian industrial city by export.


Roman age

Vicentia was settled by the Italic Euganei and then by the Palaeo-Veneti in the 2nd-3rd century BC, from whom it was taken by the Gauls. The Romans conquered it to the latter in 157 BC, giving the city the name of "Vicetia" or "Vincentia" ("victorious").

The Vicentini received the Roman citizenship in 49 BC. The city had some importance as a hub on the important road from "Mediolanum" to Aquileia, but was overshadowed by its neighbor Patavium (Padua). Little survives of the Roman city, but three of the bridges across the Bacchiglione and Retrone rivers are of Roman origin, and isolated arches of a Roman aqueduct exist outside Porta Santa Croce.

During the decline of the Western Roman Empire, Heruls, Vandals, Alaric and Huns laid the area to waste, but the city recovered after the Ostrogoth conquest in 489. It was also an important Lombard and then Frank centre. Numerous Benedictine monasteries were built in Vicenza area, which, in particular, dried the lake that once was located north of Vicenza by export.

Middle Ages

In 899 Vicenza was destroyed by Magyar raiders.

In 1001 Otto III handed over the government of the city to the bishop, and its communal organization had an opportunity to develop, separating soon from the episcopal authority. It took an active part in the League with Verona and, most of all, in the Lombard League (1164-1167) against Emperor Frederick I Barbarossa compelling Padua and Treviso to join: its podestà, Ezzelino II il Balbo, was captain of the league. When peace was restored, however, the old rivalry with Padua, Bassano, and other cities was renewed, besides which there were the internal factions of the Vivaresi (Ghibellines) and the Maltraversi (Guelphs).

The tyrannical Ezzelino III drove the Guelphs out of Vicenza, and caused his brother, Alberico, to be elected podestà (1230). The independent commune joined the Second Lombard League against Emperor Frederick II, and was sacked by that monarch (1237), after which it was annexed to Ezzelino's dominions. On his death the old oligarchic republic political structure was restored -a "consiglio maggiore" ("grand council") of four hundred members and a "consiglio minore" ("small council") of forty members - and it formed a league with Padua, Treviso and Verona. Three years later the Vicentines entrusted the protection of the city to Padua, so as to safeguard republican liberty; but this protectorate ("custodia") quickly became dominion, and for that reason Vicenza in 1311 submitted to the Scaligeri lords of Verona, who fortified it against the Visconti of Milan.

Vicenza came under rule of Venice in 1404, and its subsequent history is that of Venice. It was besieged by the Emperor Sigismund, and Maximilian I held possession of it in 1509 and 1516.

Modern age

Vicenza was a candidate to host the Council of Trent.

The 16th century was the time of Andrea Palladio, who left many outstanding examples of his art with palaces and villas in the city's territory.

After 1797, under Napoleonic rule, it was made a duché grand-fief (not a grand duchy, but a hereditary (extinguished in 1896), nominal duchy, a rare honor reserved for French officials) within Bonaparte's personal Kingdom of Italy for general Caulaincourt, also imperial Grand-Écuyer.

After 1814, Vicenza passed to the Austrian Empire. In 1848, however, the populous rose against Austria, but it was recovered after a stubborn resistance. As a part of the Kingdom of Lombardy-Venetia, it was annexed to Italy after the 3rd war of Italian independence.

Vicenza's area was a location of fights in both World War I and World War II. After the end of the latter, strong economic development made it one of the richest cities in Italy.

Vicenza is home to the United States Army post Caserma Ederle (Camp Ederle), also known as the U.S. Army Garrison Vicenza. In 1965, Caserma Ederle became the headquarters for the Southern European Task Force, and today is the central U.S. military installation in Southern Europe.

In January 2006 the European Gendarmerie Force was inaugurated in Vicenza.

Ecclesiastical history

Among its patron saints the city venerates St. Lontius, bishop and martyr, and St. Theodore and St. Apollonius, bishops and confessors in the fourth century. The Christian cemetery discovered near the Church of Sts. Felix and Fortunatus, dates from the earlier half of the fourth century, and these two saints were probably martyred under Diocletian.

The first bishop of whom there is any certain record is Horontius (590), a partisan of the Schism of the Three Chapters. Other bishops were: Vitalis (901), high chancellor of King Berengar of Ivrea; Girolamo (1000), deposed by Emperor Henry II for political sedition; Torengo, in whose episcopate a number of bishops rebelled against the episcopal authority. Uberto was deposed by Pope Innocent III as a despoiler of church property, but the canons put off until 1219 the election of his successor, Gilberto, who was forced by the tyranny of Ezzelino to live in exile.

Under Bishop Emiliani (1409) took place the apparition of the Blessed Virgin on Monte Berico which led to the foundation of the famous sanctuary. Pietro Barbo (1451) was afterwards elected Pope Paul II.

Cardinal Giovanni Battista Zeno (1468) was distinguished for his sanctity and learning. Matteo Priuli (1563) founded the seminary and made efforts for reform. Alvise M. Ganrielli (1779) restored many churches and the seminary. The See of Vicenza was suffragan of the patriarchate of Aquileia, then of the archdiocese of Udine, and since 1818 of the archdiocese of Venice.


The surrounding country is agricultural, but there are also quarries of marble, sulphur, copper, and silver mines, and beds of lignite and kaolin; mineral springs also abound, the most famous being those of Recoaro. The city has an active and lively industrial sector, which is especially famous for jewelry and clothing factories. The Gold Exposition is world-famous and it takes place in Vicenza three times per year (January, May, September). Other industries worthy of mention are the woollen and silk, pottery, and musical instruments. The headquarters of the bicycle component manufacturer Campagnolo are located here.


In 2007, there were 114,268 people residing in Vicenza, located in the province of Vicenza, Veneto, of whom 47.6% were male and 52.4% were female. Minors (children ages 18 and younger) totalled 17.17 percent of the population compared to pensioners who number 21.60 percent. This compares with the Italian average of 18.06 percent (minors) and 19.94 percent (pensioners). The average age of Vicenza residents is 43 compared to the Italian average of 42. In the five years between 2002 and 2007, the population of Vicenza grew by 3.72 percent, while Italy as a whole grew by 3.85 percent. [ [ Statistiche demografiche ISTAT:2007] ] The current birth rate of Vicenza is 9.16 births per 1,000 inhabitants compared to the Italian average of 9.45 births.

As of 2006, 87.53% of the population was Italian. The largest immigrant group comes from other European nations (the largest being Serbia, Albania, and Bosnia): 6.28%, South Asian 1.85%, sub-saharan Africa: 1.44%, and North Africa: 1.36%. Currently one quarter babies born in Vicenza has at least one foreign parent. The city is predominantly Roman Catholic, but due to immigration now has some Orthodox Christian, Muslim and Hindu followers.

Main sights

In 1994 UNESCO inscribed "Vicenza, City of Palladio" on its list of World Heritage Sites. In 1996 the site was expanded to include the Palladian villas outside the core area, and accordingly renamed "City of Palladio and the Palladian Villas of the Veneto".

Palladio's works

Vicenza is home to twenty-three buildings designed by Palladio. The famous ones include:

* The "Villa Capra" (also known as "La Rotonda"), located just outside the downtown area;
* The "Basilica Palladiana", centrally located in Vicenza's Piazza dei Signori, of which Palladio himself said that it might stand comparison with any similar work of antiquity;
* The "Teatro Olimpico", designed for the "Accademia degli Olimpici". Construction had started on this project when Palladio died in 1580. The scenes are by Vincenzo Scamozzi;
*"Palazzo Chiericati", home of Vicenza's museum;
*"Palazzo Barbaran Da Porto";
*"Palazzo Da Porto Breganze";
* "Palazzo Porto in Piazza Castello";
*"Palazzo Thiene";

Other sights


*The "cathedral", dating from early in the 11th century, and restored in the 13th, 16th, and 19th, possesses numerous pictures and sculptures, nearly all of them by Vicentine artists (Cittadello, Celestia, Liberi, Ruschi).
*The "Church of the Ara Coeli" (1244), formerly belonging to the Clarisses, contains statues by Marinali and Cassetti, and paintings by Tiepolo.
*The Churches of the "Carmine" (1372) and "St. Catherine" (1292), formerly belonging to the Humiliati, possess notable pictures.
*S. Corona (1260) was built by the Dominicans after the death of Ezzelino, and is pictures by Montagna ("The Magdelene") and Relline ("Baptism of Christ").
*"Santa Croce" (1179)
*"SS. Felice and Fortunato" (8th century)
*"SS. Filippo and Giacomo" (12th century)
*"S. Lorenzo of the Friars Minor" (1280), in the Gothic style, contains the tombs of many illustrious Vicentines.
*In the cloister of "S. Maria of the Servites" (1319) took place the miracles of St. Philip Benizi de Damiani.

ecular buildings

*The "clock tower" (1224-1446).
*The "Communal Library", founded by Count Giovanni M. Bertolo.
*"Casa Pigafetta".
*The "Town Museum" (Pinacoteca Civica) houses mainly Vicentine paintings in the Palladian Palazzo Chiericati.


Vicenza is home to Vicenza Calcio who currently play in Serie B. Their home is the Stadio Romeo Menti.

Photo gallery

Popular dishes

*Baccalà alla Vicentina
*Risi e Bisi
*Polenta e Osei

The inhabitants of Vicenza are jestly known to other Italians as "magnagati" 'cat eaters'. Purportedly, Vicentinos turned to cats for sustenance during times of famine.

Famous people from Vicenza

*Flavio Albanese, architect
*Roberto Baggio, football player
*Giuseppina M. Bakhita, saint
*Fernando Bandini, writer
*Valerio Belli, sculptor and engraver
*Maria Bertilla Boscardin, saint
*Ottavio Bertotti Scamozzi, architect
*Gelindo Bordin, athlete
*Roberto Busa, religious and informatic engineer
*Tullio Campagnolo, bicycle maker
*Francesco Chieregati, papal nuncio, bishop
*Luigi Da Porto, writer
*Almerico da Schio, astronomer and inventor
*Otello De Maria, painter
*Ilvo Diamanti, political scientist
*Federico Faggin, inventor
*Adolfo Farsari, photographer
*Ferreto dei Ferreti, historian (fourteenth century)
*Antonio Fogazzaro, writer
*Giovanni Giaconi, artist
*Antonio Giuriolo, partisan
*Fedele Lampertico, economist, writer and politician
*Niccolò Leoniceno, medic
*Paolo Lioy, naturalist
*Luigi Meneghello, writer (professor at Reading University)
*Andrea Palladio, architect
*Goffredo Parise, writer
*Antonio Pigafetta, explorer, companion of Ferdinand Magellan
*Guido Piovene, journalist and writer
*Orlando Pizzolato, athlete
*Manuel Righele, novelist and short story writer
*Sergio Romano, diplomatic
*Paolo Rossi, football player
*Mariano Rumor, politician
*Flo Sandon's, singer
*Vincenzo Scamozzi, architect
*Gian Antonio Stella, journalist and writer
*Tiziano Treu, politician
*Vitaliano Trevisan, writer and actor
*Gian Giorgio Trissino, humanist and poet (1478-1553)
*Nicola Vicentino, theorist and composer
*Giacomo Zanella, writer and priest
*Sonia Gandhi, president of the Congress party in India
*Amy Adams , American Actress
* Mark Nightshade, American Primitive Folk Artist / Folk Artist on Tour Painting the Working Class of Italy

Twin cities

* Annecy, France, from 1995
* Pforzheim, Germany, from 1991



ee also

* Collegia Vicentina

External links

* [ Concise guide to Vicenza and its heritage"]
* [ Giovanna Grossato, "A short history of Vicenza"]
* [ Map of Vicenza]
* [ Official site of the comune]
* [ Official site of the book "The Villas of Palladio"]
* [ Photos of Vicenza (in Italian)]
* [ Napoleonic heraldry]

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