A brief history of Arezzo

Arezzo has been inhabited since the prehistoric era. Already in Etruscan times there were settlements and the name therefore comes from the Etruscan Arretium. The current Arezzo dates back to Roman times. The city was built along the Cassia Vetus road that connected Rome to the Apennines.

A brief history of Arezzo

Early history

The famous Chimera di Arezzo, which is now in the Archaeological Museum of Florence

In Etruscan times the city was known for its metalworking and pottery. Originally an enemy of Rome, the city was later forced to undergo Roman rule. In the battle against the Gauls, Arezzo even fought on the side of the Romans.

During the Imperial period, the city experienced a period of prosperity.

From the Middle Ages

In the 11th and 12th centuries, Arezzo was a fiefdom of the bishops. The city expanded and the walls around the center grew longer and longer. It was during this time that the city was first divided into districts. These districts of Arezzo were all named after the city gates.

After becoming a city-state, Arezzo began a politics of expansion. The first result was the victory over Siena.

In 1289, at the Battle of Camaldino, Arezzo suffered a major defeat against the forces of Siena and Florence.

Under Bishop Guido Tarlati, who became feudal lord of Arezzo in 1321, the city grew in influence again.

After Tarlati’s death, the city came under Florence and kept this subordinate role until the unification of Italy.

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