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Trip Planner Europe  /  Italy  /  Liguria  /  Italian Riviera  /  Sarzana

Sarzana

3.4
Castles · History Museums · Gift & Specialty Shops
Sarzana is a town, comune (municipality) and former short-lived Catholic bishopric in the Province of La Spezia, of Liguria region, northwestern Italy, 15km east of Spezia, on the railway to Pisa, at the point where the railway to Parma diverges to the north. In 2010 it had a population of 21,978.HistoryThe position of Sarzana, at the entrance to the valley of the Magra (ancient Macra), the boundary between Etruria and Liguria in Roman times, gave it military importance in the Middle Ages. The first mention of the city is found in 983 in a diploma of Otto I; in 1202 the episcopal see was transferred from the ancient Luni, 5km southeast, to Sarzana.Sarzana, owing to its position, changed masters more than once, belonging first to Pisa, then to Florence, then to the Banco di S. Giorgio of Genoa and from 1572 to dogal Genoa itself.These changes left in Sarzana a conspicuous fortress, which remains a focus of attraction for people interested in military history and specifically in the history of fortifications (see Star fortress).
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