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Treviso (Veneto, Italy)

Comune di Treviso

Last modified: 2021-08-24 by rob raeside
Keywords: veneto | veneto | treviso |
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by Arnaud Leroy, 22 May 2004

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Treviso (82,450 inhabitants) is a provincial capital city in Venetia, located some 20 kms north of Venice. Some historical information on Treviso is available on the municipal website <>. Here is my rendition from Italian, with some historical details added for the sake of clarity:
The name of Treviso might come from Celtic Tarvos, meaning "toro" (?) and the Latin suffix -isium, or from the name of a tribe of Illyrian origin. During the Age of Iron (Xth century BP), the local populations were replaced by Venetians tribes which developed the so-called paleovenetian civilization. Treviso became a Roman city in 49 BP. After the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the Vth century, Treviso was incorporated into the Ostrogothic domain ruled by Theodoric the Great (454-526, king in 493), who set up his capital in Ravenna, c. 100 km south of Treviso. In May 1164, emperor Frederic Barbarossa (1122-1190, emperor in 1155) granted municipal autonomy to the city of Treviso. Between 1283 and 1312, the city was ruled by the Guelph party, the supporters of the pope, opposed to the Ghibellines, the supporters of the German emperor. From 1329 to 1388, the Trevisian March was submitted to political instability and often trashed. The Scaligeri (a.k.a. della Scala), from the Ghibelline party and lords of Verona, controlled the area from 1329 to 1339. They were succeded by the Venitians from 1339 to 1381, by the duke of Austria from 1381 to 1384, and by the lords of Carrara until 1388.
After the fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453, Venice controlled the eastern Mediterranean Sea, which opened a prosperous period for Treviso. The city was increased and restructured in the XIIIth-XIVth centuries. In 1509, Venice decided to make of Treviso a fortified city to protect itself against the League of Cambrai. The League was an alliance set up in 1508 by pope Julius II (Giuliano della Rovere, 1443-1513, pope in 1503), emperor Maximilian I (1459-1519, emperor in 1508), king of France Louis XII (1462-1515, king in 1498) and king Ferdinand II the Catholic (1452-1516, king of Castilie in 1474) and named after the French city of Cambrai. Louis XII defeated Venice in Agnadel in 1509 but the coalition dissolved in 1510. In Treviso, the old city walls and some churches and palaces were demolished and their stones used to build a new fortification system. Inside the walls, all buildings in a radius of 800 m were demolished to increase the efficiency of the defense. The works were directed by Giovanni of Verona, who also set up a system of regulation of the level of canals and ditches inside the city.
Treviso was occupied by the French in 1797 and was incorporated into Austria in 1805, and immediatly then into the Italian Kingdom set up by Napoleon I. Treviso returned to Austria in 1813. In 1866, Venetia was incorporated to Italy and the city was restructured. Treviso was severely damaged during the two World Wars. The bombing of 7 April 1944 caused the death of 2,000 and the destruction of 80% of the buildings in the city.
On 21 May 2004, the 12th stage of the cyclist "Giro d'Italia" was run between Cesena and Treviso (216 kms) and unsurprisingly won by the Italian sprinter Alessandro Petacchi. The TV reports of cyclist races usually end with nice aerial views of the arrival city. The images of Treviso distinctly showed the flag hoisted over the campanile. The flag hoisted there is white with the municipal arms of Treviso, as they can be seen on the aforementioned municipal website (greater arms) and on the International Civic Heraldry website (shield). The municipal arms of Treviso are red with a white cross and a white eight-pointed star in the first and second quarters. On the municipal webiste as well as on the flag, they are surrounded by two branches, apparently belonging to two different plants (maybe laurel and oak). On the International Civic Heraldry website, the stars are show in grey but they seem to be white on the municipal website and on the real flag.
Ivan Sache, 22 May 2004

Reported (Previous?) Flag

by Roberto Breschi from CISV

Based on Vex. It., 1979.

Coat of Arms

Greater Coat of Arms
from the municipal website

Lesser Coat of Arms
from the International Civic Heraldry website