Umbria


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Umbria

(o͞om`brēä), region (1991 pop. 811,831), 3,265 sq mi (8,456 sq km), central Italy. PerugiaPerugia
, city (1991 pop. 144,732), capital of Umbria and of Perugia prov., central Italy, situated on a hill overlooking the valley of the Tiber River. It is a commercial, industrial, and tourist center. Manufactures include chocolate, textiles, pharmaceuticals, and machinery.
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 is the capital of the landlocked region, which is divided into the provinces of Perugia and Terni (named for their capitals). Crossed by the Apennines in the east, Umbria is almost entirely mountainous or hilly. The Tiber and the Nera are the main rivers; Lake Trasimeno is in the west. Farming, mostly on a small scale, is the chief occupation. Cereals, grapes, sugar beets, and olives are grown, and cattle and hogs are raised. In the 20th cent., industrialization has been facilitated by the construction of several hydroelectric plants, particularly on the Nera at Terni. Manufactures of the region include chemicals, iron and steel, processed food, and cotton and woolen textiles. There are a number of popular tourist spots, including Assisi, Spoleto, Perugia, Orvieto, and Castiglione. The Umbri were among the first inhabitants of the region, settling there by 600 B.C. Knowledge of them is derived mainly from inscriptions found in Umbria, especially the Iguvine TablesIguvine Tables
, several inscribed bronze tablets dating from the 1st and 2d cent. A.D., discovered in 1444 at Gubbio, Italy (the ancient Iguvium and later Eugubium). Most of them are still preserved there.
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 discovered (1444) at Gubbio. There are also many Etruscan remains from a later period. Umbria was conquered by the Romans in the 3d cent. B.C., and after the fall of Rome it passed to the Goths and then to the Byzantines. From the 6th to the 11th cent. it was usually included in the powerful Lombard duchy of Spoleto. In the 12th cent. free communes developed in most cities. Local autonomy and petty tyrannies prevailed until the 16th cent., when the popes conquered Umbria (except Gubbio); Perugia, the region's leading city, was the last to fall (1540) under the papacy. Umbria was held by France from 1798 to 1800 and from 1808 to 1814, when it was restored to the papacy. There were several revolts (1831, 1848, 1859) against papal rule, and in 1860 the region voted to join the kingdom of Sardinia. Art has long flourished in the region, and a school of painting (15th–16th cent.) founded by Niccolò da Foligno, included the masters Pinturicchio and Perugino. There is a university at Perugia.

Umbria

 

an administrative region in central Italy, comprising the provinces of Perugia and Terni. Area, 8,500 sq km. Population, 786,000 (1973). The capital is the city of Perugia. Umbria is a mountainous and hilly region, with the Umbrian-Marchigian Apennines on the east rising to an elevation of 2,478 m at Monte Vettore. Lake Trasimeno is also found in the region.

Umbria has an industrial and agrarian economy. As of 1971, 29.2 percent of the economically active population was employed in industry, and 19.5 percent in agriculture. Lignites are mined near Gubbio and Pietrafitta. Nonferrous metallurgy and the chemical industry have been developed using energy produced at hydroelectric power plants on rivers of the Nera River basin. Terni, an important industrial center, has enterprises specializing in the power engineering industry, ferrous metallurgy, the chemical industry, and mining. Umbria also has enterprises of the textile and food-processing industries. Handicrafts are produced, for example, lace, embroidery, metal items, and pottery.

The main sector of the rural economy is land cultivation, the most important commercial crops being wheat, grapes (primarily for wine), and olives. Swine are of primary importance in livestock raising, but beef cattle and sheep are also raised.

Umbria is also a center for tourism.

Umbria

a mountainous region of central Italy, in the valley of the Tiber. Pop.: 834 210 (2003 est.). Area: 8456 sq. km (3265 sq. miles)
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