History of Perugia







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History of Perugia                              (Back to Perugia main information page)  

The hills of Perugia were inhabited since prehistoric times, being first a settlement of the Umbrians, then the Etruscans, becoming one of the most important cities in the High Tiber Valley in the VI century.

Conquered by the Romans in 319 B.C. Perugia was deeply involved in the civil war between Antonio and Ottaviano. It was given the name of ?August?and then of ?Perusi?

After the fall of the Roman Empire Perugia was destroyed again by Totila in 547, then it belonged to the Byzantine dominions, and finally it became a powerful independent city-state allied to the Papal State when in the IX century, with the consent of Charles the Great and Louis the Pious, it passed under the Popes.

However, for many centuries the city continued to maintain an independent life, warring against many of the neighbouring lands and cities, like Foligno, Assisi, Spoleto, Todi, Siena, and Arezzo. Beside, the city legacy was linked to the Guelphs.

The XIV century was characterised by violent struggles, between the Nobles and the Populars, and by the war against the Pope rule which ended with the Peace of Bologna in 1370, when Perugia was forced to recognise the Papal authority.

In the XV century the power of the city was concentrated in the Baglioni family but in 1540 Perugia was placed again under the direct control of the Papal State.

The papal rule continued, excepted during the French occupation and the Roman Republic, until the formation of the Kingdom of Italy in 1861.


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