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Apulia

From Academic Kids

Regione Puglia
Capital Bari
President Nichi Vendola
(The Union)
Provinces Bari
Brindisi
Foggia
Lecce
Taranto
Municipalities 258
Area 19,366 km²
 - Ranked 7th (6.4 %)
Population (2001)
 - Total

 - Ranked
 - Density


4,020,707
7th (7.1 %)
208/km²
Image:Italy Regions Apulia 220px.png
Map higlighting the location of Puglia in Italy

Apulia (Puglia in Italian) is a region in southeastern Italy bordering the Adriatic Sea in the east, the Ionian Sea to the southeast, and the Strait of Otranto and Gulf of Taranto in the south. Its southern portion known as Salento, a peninsula, forms the heel of the Italian "boot." The region is comprised of 7,469 square miles (19,345 squ km), and its population is 4,031,885 residents (1991). It is bordered by the other Italian regions of Molise to the north, Campania to the west, and Basilicata to the southwest. It is close to Albania, which is 80 km across the Adriatic. The region extends as far north as Monte Gargano, and was the scene of the last stages in the second Punic_War.

Bari is the capital of the region, which is divided into the provinces (and their capitals by the same name) of Bari, Brindisi, Foggia, Lecce, and Taranto. Apulia is mostly a plain; its low coast, however, is broken by the mountainous Garagano Peninsula in the north, and there are mountains in the north central part of the region. Other important centers are Alberobello, Conversano, Canosa, Manfredonia, Martina Franca, Mesagne, Molfetta, Otranto, Santa Maria di Leuca, Trani, and Barletta.

Farming was the chief occupation, but industry has expanded rapidly. Farm products include olives, grapes, cereals, almonds, figs, tobacco, and livestock (sheep, pigs, cattle, and goats). Manufactured products include refined petroleum, chemicals, cement, iron and steel, processed food, plastics, and wine. Fishing is pursued in the Adriatic and in the Gulf of Taranto. The scarcity of water has long been an acute problem in Apulia, and it is necessary to carry drinking water by aqueduct across the Apennines from the Sele River in Campania.

In ancient times only the northern part of the region was called Apulia; the southern peninsula was known as Calabria, a name later used to designate the toe of the Italian "boot." The region was settled by several Italic peoples and by the colonial Greeks before it was conquered in the 4th century B.C. by the Romans. After the fall of Rome, Apulia was held successively by the Goths, the Lombards, and the Byzantines. In the 11th century, it was conquered by the Normans; Robert Guiscard set up the duchy of Apulia in 1059. After the Norman conquest of Sicily in the late 11th century, Palermo replaced Melfi (just west of present day Apulia) as the center of Norman power, and Apulia became a mere province, first of the Kingdom of Sicily, then of the Kingdom of Naples. From the late 12th to early 13th centuries, Apulia was a favorite residence of the Hohenstaufen emperors, notably Frederick_II. The coast later was occupied at times by the Turks and by the Venetians. In 1861, the region joined Italy. The feudal system long prevailed in the rural areas of Apulia; social and agrarian reforms proceeded slowly from the 19th century and accelerated in the mid-20th century. The characteristic Apulian architecture of the 11th13th centuries reflects Greek, Arab, Norman, and Pisan influences. There are universities at Bari and Lecce.

The official national language (since 1861) is Italian. However, as a consequence of its deep and colorful history, other historical languages have been spoken in this region for centuries. In the northern sections, a dialect of the Neapolitan language called "northern Pugliese" is spoken. In the southern part of the region, a dialect of the Sicilian language called "Salentino" is spoken. In isolated pockets of Salento, a hybrid language that dates back to the 9th century, called Griko, is spoken. In several villages, the Arbresh dialect of the Albanian language has been spoken since a wave of refugees settled there in the 15th century. Even a variety of Franco-Provenal can also be found in certain communities.

External links


Template:Italyde:Apulien eo:Apulio fr:Pouilles it:Puglia la:Apulia lt:Apulija nl:Apuli no:Puglia ja:プッリャ州 pl:Apulia ro:Puglia

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