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Zeri

Copyright © Giulio Sperinde Particolare di Zeri

Zeri (ZIP code 54029) is 69,4 kilometers far from Massa-Carrara, that is the Chief Town of the homonymous province to whom the municipality belongs.

Zeri has a population of 1.382 inhabitants (Zeraschi) and a surface of 73,51 square kilometers thus showing a population density of 18,80 inhabitants per square kilometer. It rises 708 metres above the sea level.

The City Hall is located in Frazione Patigno 1, phone ++39 0187 - 447127, fax ++39 0187 - 447484: the E-Mail address is zeri@comune.zeri.ms.it.

Population: The municipality of Zeri had a popolation of 1.563 inhabitants accordingly to the results of the national census made in 1991. After the national census made in 2001 the population was 1.382 inhabitants, thus showing during the years 1991 - 2001 a percentual variation of -11,58% inhabitants.

The inhabitants are distributed in 677 families with an average of 2,04 people per family.

The place: The territory of the municipality lies between 275 and 1.584 metres above sea level.

The altimetric spawn is thus of 1.309 metres.

Work and workers:There are 28 industrial firms employing 55 people that are the 29,26% of the total of the workers. There are 29 service firms employing 41 people that are the 21,81% of the total of the workers. There are also 29 firms employing 67 people that are the 35,64% of the total of the workers. There are also 13 administrative offices emplying 25 workers that are the 13,30% of the total of the workers.

There is a total of 188 workers, that are the 13,60% of the inhabitants of the municipality.

Zeri rises along a large valley placed at the boundary of the Tuscany with the Liguria and the Emilia Romagna, called Lunigiana.

The economy of the town is mainly based on the sheep and bovine breeding practiced in the green valleys of the area and from which also comes an abundant milk production, on the agriculture and the traditional production of oil and wine. One of the main typical producs of Zeri is the lamb, whose meat is tender and perfumed. Valuable is also the production of mushrooms, blueberries and raspberries.

The place name comes from the Latin word "cerri" with the meaning of plants like oaks and that was quoted for the first time in a document dating back to 972.

The community of Zeri was dominated by the close village of Mulazzo up to the beginning of XI-th century when it became a Malaspina’s feudal property, Lords of Massa, who were lords of all the Lunigiana area for one more century.

Copyright © Susanna Montel Landscape

In 1164 Zeri was subdued to the jurisdiction of the close Pontremoli by Federico II of Germany. During the next centuries Zeri shared with Pontremoli its historical and politic events.

The communal life between the two communities was difficult and there was an alternating by peaceful and internal war periods and conflicts with the close villages caused by the quarrel about the division of the grazing and wood land.

From XII-th to XIV-th centuries Potremoli was the chief town of the area comprising Zeri and other villages of the Lunigiana but, weakened by some internal conflicts caused by the communities who wanted to rebel to its domination and by the attacks of the close villages, Pontremoli and the subdued communities lost their autonomy and they were subdued to different Italian Lordships until the Unity of Italy occurred 1861, when all villages first became districts and then subprefectures.

Among the most interesting monuments to see in Zeri we point out here the Chiesa della Natività di Maria (Mary’s Nativity Church), the Santuario della Madonna di Lourdes (Our Lady of Lourdes Sanctuary) and the villaggio alpestre di Formentara (alpine village of Formentara).