Tuesday, October 23, 2012

True roof of Europe, the Aosta Valley is the Italian region with the highest mountains in the Alps.

valle d'aosta mappa castelliThe Aosta Valley is an Alpine valley that with its side valleys includes the Italian slopes of Monte Bianco, Monte Rosa and the Matterhorn; its highest peak is Monte Bianco (the Mont Blanc).
The Aosta Valley is a mountainous semi-autonomous region in north-western Italy. It is bordered by Rhône-Alpes, France to the west, Valais, Switzerland to the north and the region of Piedmont to the south and east. 

The Aosta Valley is an Alpine valley that with its side valleys includes the Italian slopes of Monte Bianco, Monte Rosa and the Matterhorn; its highest peak is Monte Bianco (the Mont Blanc). 

valle d'aosta fiume1The first inhabitants of the Aosta Valley were Celts and Ligurians, whose language lingers in some local placenames. Rome conquered the region from the local Salassi ca. 25 BC and founded Augusta Prætoria Salassorum (modern-day Aosta) to secure the strategic mountain passes, which they improved with bridges and roads. 

After Rome the high valley preserved traditions of autonomy, reinforced by its seasonal isolation, though it was loosely held in turns by the Goths and the Lombards, then by the Burgundian kings in the 5th century, followed by the Franks, who overran the Burgundian kingdom in 534. At the division among the heirs of Charlemagne in 870, the Aosta Valley formed part of the Lotharingian Kingdom of Italy, in a second partition a decade later, it formed part of the Kingdom of Upper Burgundy, which was joined to the Kingdom of Arles — all with few corresponding changes in the population of the virtually independent fiefs in the Aosta Valley.
 
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