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Rapolano Terme

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Rapolano Terme (ZIP code 53040) is 31 kilometers far from Siena, that is the Chief Town of the homonymous province to whom the municipality belongs.

Rapolano Terme has a population of 4.771 inhabitants (Rapolanesi) and a surface of 83,12 square kilometers thus showing a population density of 57,40 inhabitants per square kilometer. It rises 334 metres above the sea level.

The City Hall is located in Sobborgo Garibaldi 1, phone ++39 0577 - 723200/1, fax ++39 0577 - 723222: the E-Mail address is uffstampa.comunerapolano@tin.it.

Population: The municipality of Rapolano Terme had a popolation of 4.975 inhabitants accordingly to the results of the national census made in 1991. After the national census made in 2001 the population was 4.771 inhabitants, thus showing during the years 1991 - 2001 a percentual variation of -4,10% inhabitants.

The inhabitants are distributed in 1.902 families with an average of 2,51 people per family.

The place: The territory of the municipality lies between 180 and 629 metres above sea level.

The altimetric spawn is thus of 449 metres.

Work and workers:There are 115 industrial firms employing 740 people that are the 51,97% of the total of the workers. There are 96 service firms employing 183 people that are the 12,85% of the total of the workers. There are also 114 firms employing 347 people that are the 24,37% of the total of the workers. There are also 33 administrative offices emplying 154 workers that are the 10,81% of the total of the workers.

There is a total of 1.424 workers, that are the 29,85% of the inhabitants of the municipality.

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Rapolano Terme rises on the high valley of the Ombrone river.

The local economy is mainly based on agriculture and on bovine breeding: the mining and the processing of the travertine are important too. The town is a famous thermal resort thanks to its sulphuric and alkaline water springs and also for the numerous qualified hotels.

The place name is quoted for the first time in an official document dating back to 1154 as "Rapulano". The place name comes from the Latin word "rapa", with reference to the homonymous vegetable. Later the specification "Terme" was added to the place name, with reference to its springs.

The village of Rapolano developed along the Middle Ages under the jurisdiction of the Scialenghi Counts, who depended from the city of Siena.

At that time the counts started to build in the village a ring of walls equipped with towers but the village subdued numerous incursions and devastations by enemies of Siena nevertheless.

At that same period Siena promoted the building of the first thermal baths in Rapolano Terme, thus starting an increasing activity that supported the local economy along the next centuries.

During the XIII-th century Rapolano Terme was repeatedly besieged and devastated by the Florentine troops who, in the second half of the same century, conquered the village and in 1777 elevated it to the rank of Podestà's seat.

Once became a Florentine domain Rapolano started to subdue attacks by the troops of Siena who, at the beginning of the XIV-th century, partially destroyed its walls.

Despite the restoration and fortification operated by Florence along the next centuries, the village suffered the consequences of the continuous hostile attacks that were the main cause of its economic decline.

Only after the collapse of the Republic of Siena occurred on 1554, Rapolano reached its political stability, promoting this latter the local economic development under the Medici's Grand Dukes.

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Thanks to the Medici's Grand Dukes, the ancient thermal baths were restored and many fine palaces and elegant villas were built. During the Medici's domination the mining activity in the travertine caves developed too.

At the beginning of the XVIII-th century the Lorena's Dukes came to the power and thanks to their policy, Rapolano Terme got great importance and fame so to become one of the most important centres of the surroundings. In 1777 Rapolano Terme was elevated to the rank of common.

After the French invasion of the territory occurred on the beginning of the XIX-th century, Rapolano Terme was annexed in 1815 to the Tuscan Grand Dukedom.

In 1861 Rapolano Terme was annexed to the Reign of Italy by the King VIttorio Emanuele II of Savoia.

Among the most important monuments to see in Rapolano Terme we point out here the Chiesa della Fraternità (Fraternity Church), the Parrocchiale di Santa Maria Assunta (Saint Mary of the Assumption Parish Church), the Chiesa di San Bartolomeo (Saint Bartholomew Church), the Palazzo Pretorio (Praetorian Palace), the Palazzo dei Cacciaconti (Cacciaconti's Palace) and the Terme (Thermal Baths).

Among the numerous celebrations periodically taking place in Rapolano Terme we remind here the "Wild Boar Festival" held yearly on April where it is possible to taste the good local foods.