Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Piedmont is surrounded on three sides by the Alps mountain range, including the Monviso , where the Po River rises. It borders with France, Switzerland, and the Italian regions of Lombardy, Liguria and Valle d'Aosta.
Lowland Piedmont is a fertile agricultural region, producing wheat, rice, maize and grapes. The region also contains major industrial centres, notably Turin, home to the FIAT automobile works.
In 1046, the counts of the House of Savoy added Piedmont to their main territory of Savoy, with a capital at Chambéry (now in France). The House of Savoy was elevated to a duchy in 1416, and Duke Emanuele Filiberto moved the seat to Turin in 1563. (The dukes were also kings of Sardinia starting in 1720.) Piedmont was the springboard for Italy's unification in 1859-1861, following earlier unsuccessful wars against Austria in 1820-1821 and 1848-1849.
A "piedmont" (piemonte in Italian) is a foothill, and "piedmont" has become a generic designation for foothill regions in geography.
Piedmont is one of the great winegrowing regions in Italy. More than half of its 700 km² (170,000 acres) of vineyards are registered with DOC designations. It produces wines of renowned depth such as the famed Barbera, Barolo and Barbaresco , as well as the more approachable Dolcetto.
- Battle of Méribel (1793)
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