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the walled city of Dubrovnik (Ragusa)
Map of the Republic of Ragusa
Dubrovnik is a city in Croatia, called until last century "Ragusa". It lies on the Adriatic Sea. About 50.000 people lived there in 2001. The old city of Dubrovnik has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Italian name of the city is "Ragusa": this sometimes leads to confusion because there is already a city named Ragusa on Sicily.
The old city of Ragusa was founded by romanized Illiryans after the barbarian invasions in the VI century. Ragusa of Dalmatia grew to be an important maritime republic, called Republic of Ragusa. This republic lasted until Napoleon times.
Ragusa originally was the only neolatin city of Dalmatia not dominated by the Republic of Venice, but after the Middle Ages started to be populated more and more by Croats and Serbs from inland areas of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The original neolatin population (the Dalmatian Italians) was reduced to the few people of the ragusean aristocracy and in the XIX nearly all the people living in Ragusa were Slavs. Ragusa of Dalmatia changed name to "Dubrovnik" (a Croatian name) after 1918, when the city was entered in the newly created Yugoslavia.
Contemporary Dubrovnik is one of the main touristic destinations in Croatia. Dubrovnik is famous for its Old Town - this is an ancient fortress with large stone walls, which helped Dubrovnik people to maintain its liberty during many centuries.
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Further reading [change]
- Harris, Robin. Dubrovnik, A History. London: Saqi Books, 2003. ISBN 0-86356-332-5
- Scotti, Giacomo. Ragusa, la quinta repubblica marinara. LINT Editoriale, Trieste, ISBN 88-8190-231-1