Brescia brā´shä [key], city (1991 pop. 194,502), capital of Brescia prov., Lombardy, N Italy. It is a commercial and highly diversified industrial center and a railroad junction. Manufactures include machinery, firearms, metalware, textiles, and processed food. A Gallic town, it later became a Roman stronghold (1st cent. BC) and then the seat of a Lombard duchy. In the 12th cent. it was made an independent commune. It subsequently fell under the domination of a long series of outside powers (including Verona, Milan, Venice, and Austria), until it united with Italy in 1860. In the 18th and 19th cent. Brescia was a revolutionary center, and in 1849 the city heroically resisted the Austrians for 10 days before it capitulated. Of note in Brescia are Roman remains the Romanesque Old Cathedral (11th cent.) the baroque New Cathedral (17th cent.) the Lombard-Romanesque Church of San Francesco and a Renaissance-style city hall. In the 16th cent. Brescia was the seat of a flourishing school of painting headed by G. B. Moroni and his pupil Moretto.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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