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Pergine Valdarno

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Pergine Valdarno (ZIP code 52020) is 19,9 kilometers far from Arezzo, that is the Chief Town of the homonymous province to whom the municipality belongs.

Pergine Valdarno has a population of 3.111 inhabitants (Perginesi) and a surface of 46,64 square kilometers thus showing a population density of 66,70 inhabitants per square kilometer. It rises 361 metres above the sea level.

The City Hall is located in Piazza del Comune, phone ++39 0575 - 896571, fax ++39 0575 - 896278: the E-Mail address is pergine@val.it.

Population: The municipality of Pergine Valdarno had a popolation of 3.182 inhabitants accordingly to the results of the national census made in 1991. After the national census made in 2001 the population was 3.111 inhabitants, thus showing during the years 1991 - 2001 a percentual variation of -2,23% inhabitants.

The inhabitants are distributed in 1.081 families with an average of 2,88 people per family.

The place: The territory of the municipality lies between 154 and 626 metres above sea level.

The altimetric spawn is thus of 472 metres.

Work and workers:There are 106 industrial firms employing 615 people that are the 65,71% of the total of the workers. There are 52 service firms employing 95 people that are the 10,15% of the total of the workers. There are also 50 firms employing 129 people that are the 13,78% of the total of the workers. There are also 22 administrative offices emplying 97 workers that are the 10,36% of the total of the workers.

There is a total of 936 workers, that are the 30,09% of the inhabitants of the municipality.

Pergine Valdarno rises in the High Valdarno area.

The local economy is mainly based on the craftsmanship and on the activity of numerous industries working for the production of building materials.

The place name probably comes from the Etruscan proper name of person "Percenas", corresponding to the Latin "Pergonius", to which the specification "Valdarno" was added to indicate the position of the town in the homonymous valley.

The first human traces in the territory of Pergine Valdarno go back to the Prehistoric Age, although the first residential settlements started to form during the Roman Age, as the numerous archaeological finds came to light testify.

After the collapse of the Roman Empire the locality was left and repopulated during the Early Middle Ages, when the first parish and castle were built, whose around the local community gathered.

Since the beginning the territory of Pergine Valdarno was quarrelled between bishops and local feudatories: in 1056 the Castle of Pergine Valdarno belonged to the Abbey of Prataglia.

Later the property of Pergine Valdarno passed to the Abbey of Agnano, whose bishop held the control of the village up to the middle of the XIV-th century when he decided subdued to the Republic of Florence in order to escape from the power conflicts raged among the close powerful cities for the quarrel of the village.

Since 1350, once entered the Florentine orbit, the village of Pergine Valdarno became a very interesting residential place for the Florentine middle class. This latter started to invest in those lands that reached a great economic development.

Since the XV-th century the village was governed by the Medici's Grand Dukes, who were previously came to the power in Florence.

In 1568 the Grand Dukes constituted the so called "District of the Five Commons", of which the localities of Badia di Agnano, Migliari, Montozzi, Pergine and San Pancrazio were part. Thus the common of Pergine Valdarno was formed.

The territorial organization established by the Medici's Grand Dukes continued even during the coming of the Lorena's Dukes to the power, occurred on the beginning of the XVIII-th cnetury.

The Lorena's domination lasted almost uninterruptedly until the Unity of Italy, occurred on 1861 by the action of the King Vittorio Emanuele II of Savoia.

Among the most important monuments to see in Pergine Valdarno we remind the Chiesa di San Michele Arcangelo (Saint Michael Archangel Church), the Chiesa di Santa Maria a Vallelunga (Saint Mary Church in Vallelunga), the Museo di Archeologia Industriale (Museum of Industrial Archaeology) and the "Riserva Naturale della Valle dell'Inferno e Bandella" (Natural Park of the Inferno valley and Bandella).

Among the numerous celebrations periodically taking place in Pergine Valdarno we remind the traditional "Frog Race" held yearly on the third Sunday of June and during which a historical parade and a duel in Medieval costumes take place. The duel is inspired to an ancient legend about two woodcutters who quarrelled a goat.