1. City in northern Italy;
  2. A province in modern Italy.
Lake Garda, Brescia, Italy.

Lake Garda, Brescia, Italy. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On the northern edge of the Po Plain, lying west of the southern end of Lake Garda, and on the route between Verona and Milan.

Originally the Celtic town of Brixia, then Roman, it was one of the last Ostrogothic strongholds to fall to the Byzantine Empire (563).

Virtually independent in the 12th century, it was one of the most vigorous members of the Lombard League of 1167.  It was dominated by various of the chieftains in northern Italy, 1258-69, and then was under the control of King Charles of Sicily until 1281, when it became independent of outside control until 1298.  In the early 14th century it was contended for by various noble families and also by the Emperor, particularly Henry VII (d.1313).

Later King Robert of Naples (1319-30) and King John of Bohemia (1330-33) controlled its affairs.  In 1333 it fell under the domination of Verona, and in 1337 that of Milan, under which it remained until the death of Gian Galeazzo Visconti in 1402.

In 1404 Pandolfo Malatesta, the lord of Fano and Bergamo, seized the city, which fell back under the Milanese in 1421, only to come under long years of Venetian authority from 1426 until the fall of the Republic in 1797, except for a brief period of being held by French troops, 1509-16.  Their capture of the city in 1509 badly damaged it, and it never completely recovered.

In 1797 it became part of the Cisalpine Republic (later the Kingdom of Italy) and in 1815 was added to Austrian Lombardy, being lost by Austria to the emerging Italy in 1859.

The province of Brescia, now in the Lombardia region, lies between Lakes Garda and Iseo, and extends well into the plain, though it does not reach the Po, and into the mountains, though it does not reach the frontier.

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One Response to Brescia

  1. Pingback: Cisalpine Republic | davidseurope

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