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Pistoia

Copyright © Editori dell'Acero Piazza Duomo

Pistoia (ZIP code 51100) is the Chief Town of the homonymous province to whom the municipality belongs.

Pistoia has a population of 83.936 inhabitants (Pistoiesi) and a surface of 236,77 square kilometers thus showing a population density of 354,50 inhabitants per square kilometer. It rises 67 metres above the sea level.

The City Hall is located in Piazza Duomo 1, phone ++39 0573 - 3711, fax ++39 0573 - 371289: the E-Mail address is info@comune.pistoia.it.

Population: The municipality of Pistoia had a popolation of 87.830 inhabitants accordingly to the results of the national census made in 1991. After the national census made in 2001 the population was 83.936 inhabitants, thus showing during the years 1991 - 2001 a percentual variation of -4,43% inhabitants.

The inhabitants are distributed in 34.323 families with an average of 2,45 people per family.

The place: The territory of the municipality lies between 40 and 1.611 metres above sea level.

The altimetric spawn is thus of 1.571 metres.

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Work and workers:There are 2.056 industrial firms employing 8.815 people that are the 25,83% of the total of the workers. There are 2.095 service firms employing 5.434 people that are the 15,92% of the total of the workers. There are also 2.656 firms employing 12.625 people that are the 36,99% of the total of the workers. There are also 714 administrative offices emplying 7.259 workers that are the 21,27% of the total of the workers.

There is a total of 34.133 workers, that are the 40,67% of the inhabitants of the municipality.

Pistoia rises in the middle of a plain placed between the Ombrone torrent and the Albano mountain.

Pistoia is an important market of the agricultural products caming from the surrounding territory. The economy is also based on industrial activities such as the food, engineering, textil, chemical, wooden and paper making industries.

Copyright © Editori dell'Acero Ospedale del Ceppo

Citizens carries out the cultivation of corns, vegetables and olives and vines woods, and the production of flowers and plants. Pistoia is also a famous touristic resort.

Pistoia is characterized by numerous gardens and green belts in opposition to the several industries and keeping also the ancien Roman, Gothic and Reinaissance features.

The place name, whose origin is to refer to the Roman espansion to the northen direction occurred on the second century B.C., comes from the Latin word "pistoris" that literally means "miller".

The data about the settlements preceding Roman period are poor but can be supposed that Pistoia was populated since the Bronze Age.

During the second century B.C., Pistoia was a fortified Roman colony, assigned to the militar supplying who fighted against Ligurian populations who stayed on the Apennine slopes.

In 62 B.C. took place in Pistoia an important historical event: according to the historian Sallustio, occurred the defeat of Catilina in the territory.

In the fifth century Pistoia became a bishopric and in that same period it was partially destroyed by the Gothics leaded by Radagaiso.

Copyright © Editori dell'Acero Tempio di San Giovanni Battista in Conca - Battistero di Pistoia

Pistoia was promoted to the status of a city only under the Longobardic domination and got, thanks to its strategic position, an important role as the sovereign's administrative offices.

Around ninth century the control of the city passed to the German Emperors and under their domination experienced a great economic and demographic increase.

In the twelfth century Pistoia became a free Ghibelline (Empire's supporters) common: this was the period of greatest splendour of the city.

The the thirteenth century represented a period of hard internal and external politic crisis that involved Pistoia in difficult struggles against the powerful cities of Florence and Lucca. Finally Pistoia were defeated and lost its autonomy. After several attempts to rebel and a hard siege Pistoia had to give up to the Florentines.

Around 1300 started a period of decline, because of the internal conflict between the White Guelphs (representives of the aristocracy, middle and minor arts) and the Black Guelphs (representives of the industrialists and traders), ended with the expulsion of the black Guelphs.

Florence extended its control on citizen's public and private life by its men's control and increased taxs.

Coming to power Medici family started a period of great works for the restoring of the urban plan, the noblemen houses and the religious buildings.

Copyright © Editori dell'Acero Facciata Cattedrale

In second half of 1700 Lorena family came to power and thus Pistoia had a spread economic increase thanks to a serie of administrative and economic reforms and works to improve road conditions.

Around 1800 the building of a railway contributed in the urban process of development.

In 1861 Pistoia was added to the Reign of Italy by the King Vittorio Emanuele II of Savoia.

Among the most interesting monuments to see in Pistoia we point out here the Chiesa di San Bartolomeo in Pantano (Saint Bartolomeo in Pantano Church), the Chiesa di San Giovanni Fuorcivitas (Saint Giovanni Fuorcivitas Church), the Chiesa di Santa Maria delle Grazie (Saint Mary of the Graces Church), the Chiesa di San Pietro Maggiore (Saint Peter Maggiore Church), the Duomo (Cathedral), the Torre Campanaria (Belltower), the Battistero (Baptistery) and the Palazzo del PodestÓ (Podesta's Palace).

Among famous people who were born in Pistoia we remind the architect Giovanni Michelucci (1891-1990).

Among several celebrations taking place periodically in Pistoia we point out the traditional "Giostra dell'Orso" (Tournament of the Bear) held on July 25th in the honour of Saint Jacopino, protector of the city. The Giostra dell'Orso represents the ancient Berbers' race and revives the ancient games used during the Middle Ages.