Forlì, Province of Forlì-Cesena, Emilia-Romagna

Forli' coatofarms Situated along the Via Emilia, to the right of the Montone river, is an important agricultural center in Romagna, with also a lively clothing and footwear industries.
The city is also known by the dialect nickname "Zitadon", the "big city", since it was for a long time the most populous city of the Romagna part of the region, of which it is also the historical center, as Dante says in De Vulgari Eloquentia, "meditullium", amd also the linguistic centre, since Forlivese is the typical Romagnolo dialect. The local restaurants and trattorie offer the great cuisine of the region, based on home-made pasta, ravioli, tagliatelle and cappelletti, and the traditional piadina, kind of low pancake baked on high-temperature iron.


  • Altitude: 34 mt a.s.l
  • Population: about 116,000 inhabitants (in 2013)
  • Zip/postal code: 47100
  • Dialing Area Code: +39 0543
  • Patron Saint: the Madonna del Fuoco, celebrated on 4 February
  • Demonym: forlivesi, liviensi
  • Frazioni & Localities: Bagnolo, Barisano, Borgo Sisa, Branzolino, Bussecchio, Carpena, Carpinello, Casemurate, Caserma, Castiglione, Collina, Durazzanino, Fornò, Forniolo, Grisignano, Ladino, Magliano, Malmissole, Massa, Pescaccia, Petrignone, Pieve Acquedotto, Pievequinta, Poggio, Ponte Vico, Quattro, Ravaldino in Monte, Roncadello, Ronco, Rotta, San Giorgio, San Lorenzo in Noceto, San Martino in Strada, San Martino in Villafranca, San Tomè, San Varano, Vecchiazzano, Villafranca, Villagrappa, Villanova, Villa Rovere, Villa Selva.


An ancient town, was founded by the Romans probably on a previous Etruscan center in 188 BC as Forum Livii, from the name of its founder consul Marcus Livius Salinator.

The key moments in the history of the town are well represented in its coat of arms: the red shield in the eagle's claw to the left was given by the Romans who founded it, the white cross in the claw to the right commemorates the First Crusade, the imperial eagle was granted by Frederick II, whom the town supported in the conflict with the Papal power in the year 1241 and the word "libertas" inside the small white shield reminds of the periods when Forlì was a free republic, in 889 AD nd in 1405 AD.

In later centuries the town was under the Ordelaffi, then it was included into the Church State.

What to see

  • The cathedral of San Mercuriale, in the central large square (piazza Saffi) a very ancient church rebuilt in 1173, with a fine belltower and inside the sepulchre of Barbara Manfredi, a 15th-century work of Francesco of Simone Ferrucci, and two beautiful paintings of Palmezzano.
  • The Museo Etnografico Romagnolo, with a collection of items from the agricultural tradition, such as carts and waggons, looms, measuring instruments, and a real-size reconstruction of the typical peasant's house
  • The Pinacoteca Comunale, which preserves among other works paintings of Beato Angelico, Marco Palmezzano, the Guercino, Giorgio Morandi, as well as Flemish tapestries and the Amanni sarcophagus by Antonio and Berardino Rossellino
  • The Rocca di Ravaldino, a 13th century fortress a little south of the town, with a square plan and imposing corner towers, enlarged in 1471 on a project by Giorgio Marchesi Fiorentino (1471), which was a refuge of countess Caterina Sforza sieged in 1500 by Cesare Borgia (called Duca Valentino) a natural son of Pope Alexander VI who inspired Machiavelli for his portrait of the ideal statesman.
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Surnames in the Provinces of Emilia-Romagna