Province of Genoa
University of Genoa
Marco Doria (Left)
| Via Garibaldi, Genoa Cathedral, Palazzi dei Rolli, Aquarium of Genoa, Basilica della Santissima Annunziata del Vastato|
Genoa ( Italian: Genoese and Ligurian Zena French: ; Latin and, archaically, English Genua) is the capital of Liguria and the sixth largest city in Italy with a population of 608,826 within its administrative limits on a land area of 243.6 km2 (94 sq mi). The urban zone of Genoa extends beyond the administrative city limits with a population of 718,896. The urban area of Genoa has a population of 800,709. Over 1.5 million people live in the metropolitan area. Genoa is one of Europes largest cities on the Mediterranean Sea and the largest seaport in Italy.
Genoa has been nicknamed la Superba ("the Proud one") due to its glorious past and impressive landmarks. Part of the old town of Genoa was inscribed on the World Heritage List (UNESCO) in 2006 (see below). The citys rich art, music, gastronomy, architecture and history allowed it to become the 2004 European Capital of Culture. It is the birthplace of Christopher Columbus and Niccolo Paganini.
Genoa, which forms the southern corner of the Milan-Turin-Genoa industrial triangle of north-west Italy, is one of the country’s major economic centres. The city has hosted massive shipyards and steelworks since the 19th century, and its solid financial sector dates back to the Middle Ages. The Bank of Saint George, founded in 1407, is among the oldest in the world and has played an important role in the city’s prosperity since the middle of the 15th century. Today a number of leading Italian companies are based in the city, including Selex ES, Ansaldo Energia, Ansaldo STS, Edoardo Raffinerie Garrone, Piaggio Aero and Costa Crociere.
The city cemetery, dating from the 6th and 5th centuries BC, testifies to the occupation of the site by the Greeks, but the fine harbor probably saw use much earlier, perhaps by the Etruscans. The ancient Ligurian city was known as Stalia (????i?), so referred to by Artemidorus Ephesius and Pomponius Mela (this toponym is possibly preserved in the name of Staglieno, some 3 km (2 mi) from the coast). Ligurian Stalia was overshadowed by the powerful Marseille and Vada Sabatia, near modern Savona. Stalia had an alliance with Rome through a foedus aequum ("equal pact") in the course of the Second Punic War (218-201 BC). The Carthaginians accordingly destroyed it in 209 BC. The town was rebuilt and, after the Carthaginian Wars ended in 146 BC. it received municipal rights. The original castrum thenceforth expanded towards the current areas of Santa Maria di Castello and the San Lorenzo promontory. Trades included skins, wood, and honey. Goods were shipped to the mainland, up to major cities like Tortona and Piacenza.
The citys current name derives from the Latin word meaning "knee" (genu; plural, genua), from its geographical position at the centre of the Ligurian coastal arch, thus akin to the name of Geneva. The Latin name, oppidum Genua, is recorded by Pliny the Elder (Nat. Hist. 3.48) as part of the Augustean Regio IX Liguria.
After the fall of the Western Roman Empire the Ostrogoths occupied Genoa. After the Gothic War, the Byzantines made it the seat of their vicar. When the Lombards invaded Italy in 568, the Bishop of Milan fled and held his seat in Genoa. Pope Gregory the Great was closely connected to these bishops in exile, for example involving himself the election of Deusdedit. The Lombards, under King Rothari, finally captured Genoa and other Ligurian cities in about 643. In 773 the Lombard Kingdom was annexed by the Frankish Empire; the first Carolingian count of Genoa was Ademarus, who was given the title praefectus civitatis Genuensis. Ademarus died in Corsica while fighting against the Saracens. In this period the Roman walls, destroyed by the Lombards, were rebuilt and extended.
For the following several centuries, Genoa was little more than a small centre, slowly building its merchant fleet which was to become the leading commercial carrier of the Mediterranean Sea. The town was thoroughly sacked and burned in 934-35 by Muslim North African pirates and likely abandoned for a few years. In the 10th century the city, now part of the Marca Januensis ("Genoese March") was under the Obertenghi family, whose first member was Obertus I. Genoa became one of the first cities in Italy to have some citizenship rights granted by local feudatories.
The city of Genoa covers an area of 243 square kilometres (94 sq mi) between the Ligurian Sea and the Apennine Mountains. The city stretches along the coast for about 30 kilometres (19 mi) from the neighbourhood of Voltri to Nervi, and for 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) from the coast to the north along the valleys Polcevera and Bisagno. The territory of Genoa can then be popularly divided into 5 main zones: the centre, the west, the east, the Polcevera and the Bisagno Valley.
Genoa is adjacent to two popular Ligurian vacation spots, Camogli and Portofino. In the metropolitan area of Genoa lies Aveto Natural Regional Park.
The Genoa metropolitan area had a GDP amounting to $30.1 billion in 2011, or $33,003 per capita.
The Aquarium of Genoa (in Italian: ) is the largest aquarium in Italy and the second largest in Europe. Built for Genoa Expo 92, it is an educational, scientific and cultural centre. Its mission is to educate and raise public awareness as regards conservation, management and responsible use of aquatic environments. It welcomes over 1.2 million visitors a year.
Control of the entire environment, including the temperature, filtration, and lighting of the tanks was provided by local Automation Supplier Orsi Automazione, acquired in 2001 by Siemens. The Aquarium of Genoa is co-ordinating the AquaRing EU project. It also provides scientific expertise and a great deal of content for AquaRing, including documents, images, academic content and interactive online courses, via its Online Resource Centre.
Popular foods of Genoese cuisine include pesto sauce, focaccia, farinata, stoccafisso (stockfish), and salsa di noci (walnut sauce). Fresh pasta (usually trofie) with pesto sauce is probably the most iconic among Genoese dishes. Pesto sauce is prepared with fresh basil, pine nuts, grated parmesan, garlic and olive oil pounded together. Another popular dish which is common to Genoa is the minestrone, a thick soup made out of several vegetables and legumes, such as potatoes, beans, green beans, cabbages, pumpkins and zucchini. Other soup dishes which are common to the city include the fish-consisting ciuppin (the precursor to San Franciscos cioppino, buridda, zemin (a soup with garbanzo beans), sbira and preboggion. Other specialties are Ravioli al sugo (Ravioeu ao tocco), Pansoti di Rapallo (round ravioli filled with hard-boiled egg, spinach and grated cheese), Cappon Magro, Pandolce (Pandoce) and Sacripantina. Is also known for its cheese filled pizza crust (focaccia al formaggio), although it is mainly typical of Recco (a town in the eastern Riviera), not far from Genoa.