Mantova [Mantua], Province of Mantova, Lombardy
Mantua is an ancient city and capital of the province with the same name. It was the hometown of the Latin poet Publius Virgilius Maro (Virgil: "Mantua me genuit").
- Altitude: 19 m a.s.l
- Population: about 47,000 inhabitants
- Zip/postal code: 46100
- Dialing Area Code: +39 0376
- Patron Saint: St. Anselmo of Baggio, celebrated on 18th March
- Frazioni & Localities: Castelletto Borgo, Cittadella, Formigosa, Frassino, Gambarara, Lunetta, Virgiliana.
- GPS Coordinates: 45°10' - 10°48'E
History - Antiquity and the Middle Ages
The Romans conquered it between the first and second Punic wars. After the fall of the Roman Empire it was invaded by Goths, Byzantines, Longobards and Franks, and then it became a possession of Canossa, whose last ruler was the famous countess Matilde of Canossa (d. 1115). According to the legend, she ordered the construction of the Rotonda di San Lorenzo.
In 1198 Alberto Pitentino optimised the course of the Mincio, creating what Mantuans call "the four lakes". In the Middle Ages, Mantua was ruled by several families which became extremely important in the history and culture of Italy, among them the Bonacolsi and the Corradi di Gonzaga (or, briefly, Gonzaga; 1328-1708).
History - Modern Times
What to see
- The Palazzo del Te (1525-1535), the most important monument of the town, is a creation of Giulio Romano, meant as the residential villa of Frederick II of Gonzaga, in the style of mature Renaissance. It hosts the Museo Civico (with the donations of Arnoldo Mondadori, the most important Italian publisher, and Ugo Sissa, a Mantuan architect who worked in Iraq from where he brought back important Mesopotamian artworks).
- The Duomo, the Palazzo Ducale, the Magna Domus, the Palazzo del Capitano, the Palazzo Vescovile, the Palazzo degli Uberti, the Castle of St. George, the Palazzo Castiglioni (or Palazzo Bonacolsi), the Tower of the Gabbia, and the Palazzo del Podestà, all examples of magnificent patrician buildings.
Where to stay
- Official Website of the Comune of Mantova.
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