Vigevano: Wikis

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Vigevano
—  Comune  —
Comune di Vigevano
Vigevano's famous Piazza Ducale, with the Cathedral façade

Coat of arms
Vigevano is located in Italy
Vigevano
Location of Vigevano in Italy
Coordinates: 45°19′N 8°52′E / 45.317°N 8.867°E / 45.317; 8.867Coordinates: 45°19′N 8°52′E / 45.317°N 8.867°E / 45.317; 8.867
Country Italy
Region Lombardy
Province Pavia (PV)
Frazioni Piccolini, Morsella, Fogliano, Sforzesca, Buccella
Government
 - Mayor Ambrogio Cotta Ramusino (since April 5, 2005)
Area
 - Total 82 km2 (31.7 sq mi)
Elevation 116 m (381 ft)
Population (December 31, 2004)
 - Total 59,964
 - Density 731.3/km2 (1,894/sq mi)
 - Demonym Vigevanesi
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 - Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 27029
Dialing code 0381
Website Official website

Vigevano (Avgevan in the local variety of Western Lombard) is a town and comune in the province of Pavia, Lombardy, northern Italy, which possesses many artistic treasures and runs a huge industrial business. It is at the center of a district called Lomellina, a great rice-growing agricultural centre. Vigevano received the honorary title of city with a decree of Duke Francis II Sforza on February 2, 1532. Vigevano is particularly well-known for its beautiful Renaissance "Piazza Ducale", in the centre of the town.

Contents

History

A street in central Vigevano.

The earliest notices of Vigevano date from the 10th century AD, when it was a favoured residence of the Lombard king Arduin, for the sake of the good hunting in the vicinity.

Vigevano was a Ghibelline commune, favoring the Emperor and was accordingly besieged and taken by the Milanese in 1201 and again in 1275. In 1328 it finally surrendered to Azzone Visconti, and thereafter shared the political fortunes of Milan. The Church of S. Pietro Martire (St. Peter Martyr) was built, with the adjacent Dominican convent, by Filippo Maria Visconti in 1445. In the last years of Visconti domination it sustained a siege by Francesco Sforza. Once he was settled in power in Lombardy, Sforza procured the erection of Vigevano as the seat of a bishop and provided its revenues.

Main sights

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Castello Sforzesco

Vigevano is crowned by the Castello Sforzesco, a stronghold rebuilt 1492–94 for Ludovico Maria Sforza (Ludovico il Moro), the great patron born in the town, who transformed the fortification of Luchino Visconti (who in turn had re-used a Lombard fortress) into a rich noble residence, at the cusp of Gothic and Renaissance. Leonardo da Vinci was his guest at Vigevano, and Bramante came to work for him: he finished the famous Tower entitled to him, who had been begun in 1198. The old castle has a unique raised covered road, high enough for horsemen to ride through, that communicates between the new palace and the old fortifications; there is a Falconry, an elegant loggiato supported by 48 columns, and, in the rear area of the mastio, the Ladies' Loggia made for Duchess Beatrice d'Este.

Piazza Ducale

Vigevano's main attraction is one of the finest piazzas in Italy, the Piazza Ducale, an elongated rectangle that is almost in the ideal proportions 1:3 advocated by the architectural theorist Antonio Filarete, which is also said to have been laid out by Bramante, and was certainly built for Ludovico il Moro, starting in 1492-93 and completed in record time, unusual for early Renaissance town planning. Piazza Ducale was actually planned to form a noble forecourt to his castle, unified by the arcades that completely surround the square, an amenity of the new North Italian towns built in the 13th century. The town's main street enters through a sham arcaded façade that preserves the unity of the space as at the Place des Vosges. Ludovico demolished the former palazzo of the commune of Vigevano to create the space.

Cathedral

In the 17th century one end of the Piazza Ducale was enclosed by the concave Baroque façade of the Cathedral, cleverly adjusted to bring the ancient duomo into a line perpendicular to the axis of the piazza and centered on it.

The Cathedral was begun in 1532 under Duke Francesco II, who commissioned the design to Antonio da Lonate. The edifice was completed in 1606. The interior is on the Latin cross plan, with a nave and two aisles, and houses works by Macrino d'Alba, Bernardino Ferrari and others, as well as tempera polyptych of the school of Leonardo da Vinci.

Notable Vigevanesi

Gallery

External links

References

  • Giedion, Siegfried. Space, Time and Architecture.  

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From LoveToKnow 1911

VIGEVANO, a town and episcopal see of Lombardy, Italy, in the province of Pavia, on the right bank of the Ticino, 24 m. by rail S.W. from Milan on the line to Mortara, 381 ft. above sea-level. Pop. (1901) 18,043 (town); 23,560 (commune). It is a medieval walled town, with an arcaded market-place, a cathedral, the Gothic church of S. Francesco, and a castle of the Sforza family, dating from the 14th century and adorned with a loggia by Bramante and a tower imitating that of Filarete in the Castello Sforzesco at Milan. It is a place of some importance in the silk trade and also produces excellent macaroni. There is a steam tramway to Novara.

Vigfusson, Gudbrandr (1828-1889), the foremost Scandinavian scholar of the 19th century, was born of a good and old Icelandic family in Breibafjord in 1828. He was brought up, till he went to a tutor's, by his kinswoman, Kristin Vigfussdottir, to whom, he records, he "owed not only that he became a man of letters, but almost everything." He was sent to the old and famous school at Bessastad and (when it removed thither) at Reykjavik; and in 1849, already a fair scholar, he came to Copenhagen University as a bursaries in the Regense College. He was, after his student course, appointed stipendiarius by the Arna-Magnaean trustees, and worked for fourteen years in the Arna-Magnaean Library till, as he said, he knew every scrap of old vellum and of Icelandic written paper in that whole collection. During his Danish life he twice revisited Iceland (last in 1858), and made short tours in Norway and South Germany with friends. In 1866, after some months in London, he settled down in Oxford, which he made his home for the rest of his life, only quitting it for visits to the great Scandinavian libraries or to London (to work during two or three long vacations with his fellow-labourer, F. Y. Powell), or for short trips to places such as the Isle of Man, the Orkneys and Shetlands, the old mootstead of the West Saxons at Downton, the Roman station at Pevensey, the burial-place of Bishop Brynjulf's ill-fated son at Yarmouth, and the like. He held the office of Reader in Scandinavian at the university of Oxford (a post created for him) from 1884 till his death. He was a Jubilee Doctor of Upsala, 1877, and received the Danish order of the Dannebrog in 1885. Vfgfusson died of cancer on the 31st of January 1889, and was buried in St Sepulchre's Cemetery, Oxford, on the 3rd of February. He was an excellent judge of literature, reading most European languages well and being acquainted with their classics. His memory was remarkable, and if the whole of the Eddic poems had been lost, he could have written them down from memory. He spoke English well and idiomatically, but with a strong Icelandic accent. He wrote a beautiful, distinctive and clear hand, in spite of the thousands of lines of MS. copying he had done in his early life.

By his T inatal (written between October 1854 and April 1855) he laid the foundations for the chronology of Icelandic history, in a series of conclusions that have not been displaced (save by his own additions and corrections), and that justly earned the praise of Jacob Grimm. His editions of Icelandic classics (1858-68), Biskopa Sogur, Bardar Saga, Forn Sbgur (with Mobius), Eyrbyggia Saga and Flateyar-bok (with Unger) opened a new era of Icelandic scholarship, and can only fitly be compared to the Rolls Series editions of chronicles by Dr Stubbs for the interest and value of their prefaces and texts. Seven years of constant and severe toil (1866-73) were given to the Oxford Icelandic-English Dictionary, incomparably the best guide to classic Icelandic, and a monumental example of single-handed work. His later series of editions (1874-85) included Orkneyinga and Hdconar Saga, the great and complex mass of Icelandic historical sagas, known as Sturlunga, and the Corpus Poeticum Boreale, in which he edited the whole body of classic Scandinavian poetry. As an introduction to the Sturlunga, he wrote a complete though concise history of the classic Northern literature and its sources. In the introduction to the Corpus, he laid the foundations of a critical history of the Eddic poetry and Court poetry of the North in a series of brilliant, original and wellsupported theories that are gradually being accepted even by those who were at first inclined to reject them. His little Icelandic Prose Reader (with F. York Powell) (1879) furnishes the English student with a pleasant and trustworthy path to a sound knowledge of Icelandic. The Grimm Centenary Papers (1886) give good examples of the range of his historic work, while his Appendix on Icelandic currency to Sir G. W. Dasent's Burnt Njal is a model of methodical investigation into an intricate and somewhat important subject. As a writer in his own tongue he at once gained a high position by his excellent and delightful Relations of Travel in Norway and South Germany. In English, as his "Visit to Grimm" and ,his powerful letters to The Times show, he had attained no mean skill. His life is mainly a record of well-directed and efficient labour in Denmark and Oxford. (F. Y. P.)


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