16 Facts About Lucca


Lucca is a city and comune in Tuscany, Central Italy, on the Serchio River, in a fertile plain near the Ligurian Sea.

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Territory of present-day Lucca was certainly settled by the Etruscans, having traces of an probable earlier Ligurian presence, dating from 3rd century BC.

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At one point, Lucca was plundered by Odoacer, the first Germanic King of Italy.

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Lucca was an important city and fortress even in the sixth century, when Narses besieged it for several months in 553.

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Lucca cloth was a silk fabric that was woven with gold or silver threads.

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Lucca became prosperous through the silk trade that began in the eleventh century, and came to rival the silks of Byzantium.

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From 1073 to 1086, the bishop of Lucca was his nephew Anselm II, a prominent figure in the Investiture Controversy.

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In 1273 and again in 1277, Lucca was ruled by a Guelph capitano del popolo named Luchetto Gattilusio.

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Lucca's biography is Machiavelli's third famous book on political rule.

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In 1408, Lucca hosted a convocation organized by Pope Gregory XII with his cardinals intended to end the schism in the papacy.

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Lucca managed, at first as a democracy, and after 1628 as an oligarchy, to maintain its independence alongside of Venice and Genoa, and painted the word Libertas on its banner until the French Revolution in 1789.

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Lucca had been the second largest Italian city state with a republican constitution to remain independent over the centuries.

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However, already in 1805 the Republic of Lucca was converted into a monarchy by Napoleon, who installed his sister Elisa Bonaparte Baciocchi as "Princess of Lucca".

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The only reigning dukes of Lucca were Maria Luisa of Spain, who was succeeded by her son Charles II, Duke of Parma in 1824.

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Lucca is the birthplace of composers Giacomo Puccini, Nicolao Dorati, Francesco Geminiani, Gioseffo Guami, Luigi Boccherini, and Alfredo Catalani.

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Since 2004, Lucca is home to IMT Lucca, a public research institution and a selective graduate school and part of the Superior Graduate Schools in Italy .

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