Friuli Venezia Giulia is Italy’s most north-eastern region. It covers an area of 7,856 square kilometres and is the fifth smallest region of the country with about 1.2 million inhabitants. It is divided into four provinces: Pordenone, Udine, Gorozia and Triest. The regional capital is Trieste.
To the north it borders Austria; to the east Slovenia to the east; to the south lies the Adriatic Sea and to the west its internal border is with the region of Veneto.
Friuli-Venezia Giulia is one of five autonomous regions of Italy with special statute. Although a part of federal Italy, these regions, which are: Sardinia, Sicily, Trentino-Alto Adige, Aosta Valley and Friuli-Venezia Giulia, operate more or less independently of Italian state control, being responsible in a large part for their own administration, legislation and finances.
This region has historically provided access to the sea to many Central European countries and is crossed by the major transport routes between the east and west of southern Europe. It was originally created by combining the regions of Friuli and Venezia Giulia, each with its own distinct history, traditions and identity.
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Culture and history of Friuli Venezia Giulia
The region was invaded by the Celts in the 5th century and then in the 3rd century BC by the Romans, who in 181 BC founded the important city of Aquileia. Under Augustus Friuli was included in the Decima Regio, Venetia. In 452 Aquileia was destroyed by barbarian invaders, then in the 6th century BC under the Lombards a Dukedom was established with capital Cividale. Other invaders, the Avari in the 7th century destroyed the Lombard dukedom and its capital, but later on Charlemagne included the region in the nation of Austria. Invaded by the Hungarians in 828, was later under the German emperors until 1420.
After that time, the region was included in the Republic of Venice, until Napoleon with the Campoformio Treaty of 1797 gave it to the Austrians. Only after the Third War of Italian Independence in 1866 Friuli was united to Italy, except for the province of Gorizia, which was under Austrian rule until 1919.