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Bari [Lat. Barium](i)locked

  • Pina Belli D’Elia
  •  and Roberto Coroneo


[Lat. Barium]

Regional capital and port in Apulia, southern Italy. The site of an important Greek colony, Bari may have been inhabited from 1500 BC. After the Roman conquest, in the 3rd century BC, the port developed, and the city became an important agricultural and commercial centre with communications to both East and West. The diocese of Bari was founded in AD 347. From the 6th century to the 12th, Bari was ruled successively by the Lombards, Saracens, Byzantines, and Normans. This was a period of great prosperity when the port grew to rival Venice and, with the acquisition of the relics of St Nicholas in 1087, the city became a major religious centre. A lively diversity of cultural influences characterizes the medieval buildings, notably S Nicola (see §2 below), a typical example of Apulian Romanesque, and the cathedral (see §1 below). In 1156 the Normans razed the city when its inhabitants rebelled. It again flourished under the Hohenstaufen emperor ...

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