Civitavecchia is a town and comune
In Italy, the comune is the basic administrative division, and may be properly approximated in casual speech by the English word township or municipality.-Importance and function:...

of the province of Rome
Province of Rome
The Province of Rome , is a province in the Lazio region of Italy. The province can be viewed as the extended metropolitan area of the city of Rome, although in its more peripheral portions, especially to the north, it comprises towns surrounded by rural landscape.-Geography:The Province of Rome...

 in the central Italian
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

 region of Lazio. A sea port
A port is a location on a coast or shore containing one or more harbors where ships can dock and transfer people or cargo to or from land....

 on the Tyrrhenian Sea
Tyrrhenian Sea
The Tyrrhenian Sea is part of the Mediterranean Sea off the western coast of Italy.-Geography:The sea is bounded by Corsica and Sardinia , Tuscany, Lazio, Campania, Basilicata and Calabria and Sicily ....

, it is located 80 kilometers west-north-west of Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

, across the Mignone river. The harbor is formed by two piers and a breakwater, on which is a lighthouse. The name Civitavecchia means "ancient town".


The modern city was built over a pre-existing Etruscan
Etruscan civilization
Etruscan civilization is the modern English name given to a civilization of ancient Italy in the area corresponding roughly to Tuscany. The ancient Romans called its creators the Tusci or Etrusci...


The harbor was constructed by the Emperor Trajan
Trajan , was Roman Emperor from 98 to 117 AD. Born into a non-patrician family in the province of Hispania Baetica, in Spain Trajan rose to prominence during the reign of emperor Domitian. Serving as a legatus legionis in Hispania Tarraconensis, in Spain, in 89 Trajan supported the emperor against...

 at the beginning of the 2nd century. The first occurrence of the name Centum Cellae is from a letter by Pliny the Younger
Pliny the Younger
Gaius Plinius Caecilius Secundus, born Gaius Caecilius or Gaius Caecilius Cilo , better known as Pliny the Younger, was a lawyer, author, and magistrate of Ancient Rome. Pliny's uncle, Pliny the Elder, helped raise and educate him...

 (AD 107). The origin of the name is disputed: it has been suggested that it could refer to the centum ("hundred") halls of the villa of the emperor.

In the high Middle Ages
Middle Ages
The Middle Ages is a periodization of European history from the 5th century to the 15th century. The Middle Ages follows the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 and precedes the Early Modern Era. It is the middle period of a three-period division of Western history: Classic, Medieval and Modern...

, Centumcellae was a Byzantine stronghold. Captured by the Saracen
Saracen was a term used by the ancient Romans to refer to a people who lived in desert areas in and around the Roman province of Arabia, and who were distinguished from Arabs. In Europe during the Middle Ages the term was expanded to include Arabs, and then all who professed the religion of Islam...

s in 828, it was later acquired by the Papal States
Papal States
The Papal State, State of the Church, or Pontifical States were among the major historical states of Italy from roughly the 6th century until the Italian peninsula was unified in 1861 by the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia .The Papal States comprised territories under...


The place became a free port
Free port
A free port or free zone , sometimes also called a bonded area is a port, port area or other area with relaxed jurisdiction with respect to the country of location...

 under Pope Innocent XII
Pope Innocent XII
Pope Innocent XII , born Antonio Pignatelli, was Pope from 1691 to 1700.-Biography:He was born in Spinazzola to one of the most aristocratic families of the Kingdom of Naples, which included many Viceroys, and ministers to the crown, and was educated at the Jesuit college in Rome.In his twentieth...

 in 1696 and by the modern era was the main port of Rome. The French occupied it in 1849. On April 16, 1859 the Rome and Civitavecchia Rail Road was opened for service.
The Papal troops opened the gates of the fortress to the Italian general Nino Bixio
Nino Bixio
Nino Bixio was an Italian soldier and politician, who fought for the Italian unification.Born in Genoa, while still a boy, Bixio was compelled by his parents to embrace a career in the navy of the Kingdom of Sardinia...

 in 1870.

During World War II
World War II
World War II, or the Second World War , was a global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world's nations—including all of the great powers—eventually forming two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis...

, Allied
Allies of World War II
The Allies of World War II were the countries that opposed the Axis powers during the Second World War . Former Axis states contributing to the Allied victory are not considered Allied states...

 bombings severely damaged Civitavecchia, and caused civilian casualties.


Civitavecchia is today a major cruise and ferry port, the main starting point for sea connection from central Italy
Central Italy
Central Italy is one of the five official statistical regions of Italy used by the National Institute of Statistics , a first level NUTS region and a European Parliament constituency...

 to Sardinia
Sardinia is the second-largest island in the Mediterranean Sea . It is an autonomous region of Italy, and the nearest land masses are the French island of Corsica, the Italian Peninsula, Sicily, Tunisia and the Spanish Balearic Islands.The name Sardinia is from the pre-Roman noun *sard[],...

, Sicily
Sicily is a region of Italy, and is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. Along with the surrounding minor islands, it constitutes an autonomous region of Italy, the Regione Autonoma Siciliana Sicily has a rich and unique culture, especially with regard to the arts, music, literature,...

, Malta
Malta , officially known as the Republic of Malta , is a Southern European country consisting of an archipelago situated in the centre of the Mediterranean, south of Sicily, east of Tunisia and north of Libya, with Gibraltar to the west and Alexandria to the east.Malta covers just over in...

, Tunis
Tunis is the capital of both the Tunisian Republic and the Tunis Governorate. It is Tunisia's largest city, with a population of 728,453 as of 2004; the greater metropolitan area holds some 2,412,500 inhabitants....

 and Barcelona
Barcelona is the second largest city in Spain after Madrid, and the capital of Catalonia, with a population of 1,621,537 within its administrative limits on a land area of...

. Fishing
Fishing is the activity of trying to catch wild fish. Fish are normally caught in the wild. Techniques for catching fish include hand gathering, spearing, netting, angling and trapping....

 has a secondary importance.

The city is also the seat of two thermal power station
Thermal power station
A thermal power station is a power plant in which the prime mover is steam driven. Water is heated, turns into steam and spins a steam turbine which drives an electrical generator. After it passes through the turbine, the steam is condensed in a condenser and recycled to where it was heated; this...

s. The conversion of one of them to coal
Coal is a combustible black or brownish-black sedimentary rock usually occurring in rock strata in layers or veins called coal beds or coal seams. The harder forms, such as anthracite coal, can be regarded as metamorphic rock because of later exposure to elevated temperature and pressure...

 has raised the population's protests, as it has been suggested it could create heavy pollution.

Main sights

  • The massive Forte Michelangelo ("Michelangelo
    Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni , commonly known as Michelangelo, was an Italian Renaissance painter, sculptor, architect, poet, and engineer who exerted an unparalleled influence on the development of Western art...

    's fort") was first commissioned from Bramante
    Donato Bramante
    Donato Bramante was an Italian architect, who introduced the Early Renaissance style to Milan and the High Renaissance style to Rome, where his most famous design was St...

     by Pope Julius II
    Pope Julius II
    Pope Julius II , nicknamed "The Fearsome Pope" and "The Warrior Pope" , born Giuliano della Rovere, was Pope from 1503 to 1513...

    , to defend the port of Rome, and was completed in 1535 by Giuliano Leno and Antonio da Sangallo the Younger
    Antonio da Sangallo the Younger
    thumb|250px|The church of Santa Maria di Loreto near the [[Trajan's Market]] in [[Rome]], considered Sangallo's masterwork.thumb|250px|View of St. Patrick's Well in [[Orvieto]]....

    , under Paul III
    Pope Paul III
    Pope Paul III , born Alessandro Farnese, was Pope of the Roman Catholic Church from 1534 to his death in 1549. He came to the papal throne in an era following the sack of Rome in 1527 and rife with uncertainties in the Catholic Church following the Protestant Reformation...

    . The upper part of the "maschio" tower, however, was designed by Michelangelo, whose name is generally applied to the fortress. The edifice, measuring 100 by 82 m (328.1 by 269 ), has four towers with a diameter of 21 m (68.9 ft). The main tower, of octagonal shape, has sides of 12 m (39.37 ft). The walls have an impressive thickness of 6 to 7.6 m (19.7 to 24.9 ). The fortress was built over an ancient Roman construction, probably the barracks of the classiarii ("mariners") of the Imperial Fleet.
  • The Rocca
    Rocca (architecture)
    Rocca is an Italian term meaning a high, fortifiable stronghold, usually located in smaller towns, beneath or on which the village or town clustered, within which its inhabitants might take refuge at times of trouble; under its owners' patronage the settlement might hope to find prosperity in...

     ("castle"), re-built in the late 15th century by Pope Sixtus V
    Pope Sixtus V
    Pope Sixtus V , born Felice Peretti di Montalto, was Pope from 1585 to 1590.-Early life:The chronicler Andrija Zmajević states that Felice's family originated from modern-day Montenegro...

    . A Palazzo Apostolico was added by Pius IV
    Pope Pius IV
    Pope Pius IV , born Giovanni Angelo Medici, was Pope from 1559 to 1565. He is notable for presiding over the culmination of the Council of Trent.-Biography:...

     in the 16th century.
  • The cathedral of San Francesco d'Assisi was built by the Franciscan
    Most Franciscans are members of Roman Catholic religious orders founded by Saint Francis of Assisi. Besides Roman Catholic communities, there are also Old Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, ecumenical and Non-denominational Franciscan communities....

    s over a pre-existing small church built from 1610. The current edifice, with Baroque
    The Baroque is a period and the style that used exaggerated motion and clear, easily interpreted detail to produce drama, tension, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, painting, literature, dance, and music...

    -Neoclassical lines, was erected in the eighteenth century.
  • North of the city at Ficoncella are the Terme Taurine baths frequented by Romans and still popular with the Civitavecchiesi. The modern name stems from the fig
    Common fig
    The Common fig is a deciduous tree growing to heights of up to 6 m in the genus Ficus from the family Moraceae known as Common fig tree. It is a temperate species native to the Middle East.-Description:...

     plants among the various pools.
  • Next to the town is the location of the cruise ship docks that service all of the Rome area. All major cruise line
    Cruise line
    A cruise line is a company that operates cruise ships. Cruise lines have a dual character; they are partly in the transportation business, and partly in the leisure entertainment business, a duality that carries down into the ships themselves, which have both a crew headed by the ship's captain,...

    s start and end their cruises at this location, and many others stop for shore excursion days that allow guests to see Rome and Vatican sights, which are about 90 minutes away.


Civitavecchia experiences a Mediterranean climate
Mediterranean climate
A Mediterranean climate is the climate typical of most of the lands in the Mediterranean Basin, and is a particular variety of subtropical climate...

 (Köppen climate classification
Köppen climate classification
The Köppen climate classification is one of the most widely used climate classification systems. It was first published by Crimea German climatologist Wladimir Köppen in 1884, with several later modifications by Köppen himself, notably in 1918 and 1936...



The Port of Civitavecchia, also known as "Port of Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

", is an important hub for the maritime transport in Italy, for goods and passengers. Part of the "Motorways of the Sea
Motorways of the Sea
Motorways of the Sea are a concept in the transport policy of the European Union, stressing the importance of sea transport. The main aim of these Motorways of the Sea is to improve port communications with peripheral regions of the European continent and thus strengthen the networks between the EU...

" it is linked to several Mediterranean
Mediterranean Sea
The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean surrounded by the Mediterranean region and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by Anatolia and Europe, on the south by North Africa, and on the east by the Levant...

 ports and represents one of the main links between Italian mainland to Sardinia
Sardinia is the second-largest island in the Mediterranean Sea . It is an autonomous region of Italy, and the nearest land masses are the French island of Corsica, the Italian Peninsula, Sicily, Tunisia and the Spanish Balearic Islands.The name Sardinia is from the pre-Roman noun *sard[],...


Civitavecchia railway station
Civitavecchia railway station
Civitavecchia railway station serves the town and comune of Civitavecchia, the sea port for Rome, in the region of Lazio, central Italy. Opened in 1859, it forms part of the Pisa–Livorno–Rome railway....

, opened in 1859, is the western terminus of the Rome–Civitavecchia railway, which forms part of the Pisa–Livorno–Rome railway
Pisa–Livorno–Rome railway
The Pisa–Rome railway is one of the trunk lines of the Italian railway network. It connects Italy’s northwest with its south, running along the Tyrrhenian coast between the Italian regions of Tuscany and Lazio, through the provinces of Pisa, Livorno, Grosseto, Viterbo and Rome. The line is double...

A short line linking the town center to the harbor survived until early 2000s. It counted two stations: Civitavecchia Marittima, serving the port, and Civitavecchia Viale della Vittoria.

Civitavecchia is served by the A12
Autostrada A12 (Italy)
The A12 is an Italian autostrada , composed of two unconnected parts.The first one connects Genoa and Rosignano Marittimo, the second connects Civitavecchia and Rome....

, an unconnected motorway linking Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

 to Genoa
Genoa |Ligurian]] Zena ; Latin and, archaically, English Genua) is a city and an important seaport in northern Italy, the capital of the Province of Genoa and of the region of Liguria....

 and by the State highway SS1
State highway (Italy)
The Strade Statali, abbreviated SS, is the Italian national network of state highways. The total length for the network is about 18.000 km.The Italian state highway network are maintained by ANAS...

 Via Aurelia
Via Aurelia
The Via Aurelia was a Roman road in Italy constructed around the year 241 BC. The project was undertaken by C. Aurelius Cotta, who at that time was censor...

, which also links the two stretches. The town is also interested by a project regarding a new motorway, the Civitavecchia-Venice
Venice is a city in northern Italy which is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. It is the capital of the Veneto region...

 or New Romea, nowadays completed as a dual carriageway
Dual carriageway
A dual carriageway is a class of highway with two carriageways for traffic travelling in opposite directions separated by a central reservation...

 between Viterbo
See also Viterbo, Texas and Viterbo UniversityViterbo is an ancient city and comune in the Lazio region of central Italy, the capital of the province of Viterbo. It is approximately 80 driving / 80 walking kilometers north of GRA on the Via Cassia, and it is surrounded by the Monti Cimini and...

 and Ravenna
Ravenna is the capital city of the Province of Ravenna in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy and the second largest comune in Italy by land area, although, at , it is little more than half the size of the largest comune, Rome...

 (via Terni
Terni is a city in southern Umbria, central Italy, capital of the province of Terni, located in the plain of the Nera river. It is 104 km N of Rome, 36 km NW of Rieti, and 29 km S of Spoleto.-History:...

, Perugia
Perugia is the capital city of the region of Umbria in central Italy, near the River Tiber, and the capital of the province of Perugia. The city is located about north of Rome. It covers a high hilltop and part of the valleys around the area....

 and Cesena
Cesena is a city and comune in the Emilia-Romagna region of northern Italy, south of Ravenna and west of Rimini, on the Savio River, co-chief of the Province of Forlì-Cesena. It is at the foot of the Apennines, and about 15 km from the Adriatic Sea.-History:Cesena was originally an Umbrian...

) and commonly known in Italy as the Orte
Orte is a comune in the province of Viterbo, in the Italian region Latium Lazio, located about 60 km north of Rome and about 24 km east of Viterbo. As of 31 December 2006, Orte had a population of 8,364....


Twin towns and sister cities

Civitavecchia is twinned
Town twinning
Twin towns and sister cities are two of many terms used to describe the cooperative agreements between towns, cities, and even counties in geographically and politically distinct areas to promote cultural and commercial ties.- Terminology :...

 with: Amelia
Amelia (Italy)
Amelia is a town and comune of the province of Terni, in the Umbria region of central Italy. It grew up around an ancient hill fort, known to the Romans as '.-Geography:...

, Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

Bethlehem is a Palestinian city in the central West Bank of the Jordan River, near Israel and approximately south of Jerusalem, with a population of about 30,000 people. It is the capital of the Bethlehem Governorate of the Palestinian National Authority and a hub of Palestinian culture and tourism...

, Palestinian Authority
Palestinian National Authority
The Palestinian Authority is the administrative organization established to govern parts of the West Bank and Gaza Strip...

, (since 2000) Ishinomaki
Ishinomaki, Miyagi
is a city located in Miyagi Prefecture, Japan.As of January 1, 2010, the city had an estimated population of 164,294 and a population density of 295.83 persons per km²...

, Japan
Japan is an island nation in East Asia. Located in the Pacific Ocean, it lies to the east of the Sea of Japan, China, North Korea, South Korea and Russia, stretching from the Sea of Okhotsk in the north to the East China Sea and Taiwan in the south...

Nantong is a prefecture-level city in Jiangsu province, People's Republic of China. Located on the northern bank of the Yangtze River, near the river mouth, Nantong is a vital river port bordering Yancheng to the north, Taizhou to the west, Suzhou and Shanghai to the south across the river, and...

, China
People's Republic of China
China , officially the People's Republic of China , is the most populous country in the world, with over 1.3 billion citizens. Located in East Asia, the country covers approximately 9.6 million square kilometres...

Tivat is a coastal town in southwest Montenegro, located in the Bay of Kotor...

, Montenegro
Montenegro Montenegrin: Crna Gora Црна Гора , meaning "Black Mountain") is a country located in Southeastern Europe. It has a coast on the Adriatic Sea to the south-west and is bordered by Croatia to the west, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the northwest, Serbia to the northeast and Albania to the...

Magas is the capital of the Republic of Ingushetia, Russia. The town was founded in 1995; it replaced Nazran as the capital of the republic in 2002. In terms of population, Magas is the smallest capital of a federal subject in Russia: -History:...

, Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...

Mobile, Alabama
Mobile is the third most populous city in the Southern US state of Alabama and is the county seat of Mobile County. It is located on the Mobile River and the central Gulf Coast of the United States. The population within the city limits was 195,111 during the 2010 census. It is the largest...

, United States


  • Manuele Blasi
    Manuele Blasi
    Manuele Blasi is an Italian football midfielder who currently plays for Serie A club Parma.-Career:A centre midfielder, Blasi made his Serie A debut for A.S. Roma in a match against Piacenza on 22 January 2000. he also played for Lecce at Serie B before returned to Roma. In mid-2000 he was signed...

     (b. 1980), football player
  • Silvio Branco
    Silvio Branco
    Silvio Branco is a professional boxer in the light heavyweight division. His record is 59-9-2 .- Career :...

     (b. 1966), professional boxer
  • Andrea Casali
    Andrea Casali
    Andrea Casali was an Italian painter of the Rococo period.He was born at Civitavecchia, and is said to have been a pupil of Sebastiano Conca. He traveled to England in 1741, and stayed there for more than two decades, and where he was a teacher to James Durno. Some sources claim a birthdate of...

     (1705–1784), Rococo painter
  • Pasquale Lattanzi
    Pasquale Lattanzi
    Pasquale Lattanzi is a retired Italian professional football player.-External links:*...

     (b. 1950), former football player
  • Giancarlo Peris
    Giancarlo Peris
    Giancarlo Peris , an Italian track athlete of Greek descent, was the final bearer of the Olympic torch for the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome, Italy....

     (b. 1941), former track athlete
  • Roberto Petito
    Roberto Petito
    Roberto Petito , is an Italian road bicycle racer.Petito was born in Civitavecchia. His most important win came in 1997, when he won the Tirreno–Adriatico. He has also finished in the top five in classics such as the Ronde van Vlaanderen or Paris–Roubaix, as well as the overall in the 2006...

     (b. 1971), road bicycle racer
  • Giulio Saraudi
    Giulio Saraudi
    Giulio Saraudi was an Italian boxer, and an Olympic bronze medalist.-Amateur career:...

     (1938–2005), boxer
  • Eugenio Scalfari
    Eugenio Scalfari
    Eugenio Scalfari is an Italian journalist, editor of the news magazine L'espresso , former member of parliament in the Italian Chamber of Deputies , co-founder of the newspaper La Repubblica and its editor from 1976 to 1996.-Biography:A law graduate with a interest in journalism and politics,...

     (b. 1924), journalist, founder of la Repubblica
    La Repubblica
    la Repubblica is an Italian daily general-interest newspaper. Founded in 1976 in Rome by the journalist Eugenio Scalfari, as of 2008 is the second largest circulation newspaper, behind the Corriere della Sera.-Foundation:...

  • Emiliano Sciarra
    Emiliano Sciarra
    Emiliano Sciarra is a game designer of board games, card games and videogames.He is the author of Bang!, a Wild West themed card game published by daVinci Editrice.- Biography:...

     (b. 1971), game designer
  • Roldano Simeoni
    Roldano Simeoni
    Roldano Simeoni is a retired water polo player from Italy, who competed in three consecutive Summer Olympics for his native country, starting in 1972....

     (b. 1948), former water polo player
  • Vittorio Tamagnini
    Vittorio Tamagnini
    Vittorio Tamagnini was a bantamweight professional boxer from Italy, who won the gold medal at the 1928 Summer Olympics in Amsterdam, The Netherlands.- Olympic results :*1st round bye...

     (1910–1981), boxer

See also

  • Civitavecchia Calcio
  • Civitavecchia di Arpino
    Arpino is a comune in the province of Frosinone in the region of Latium in central Italy. Its Roman name was Arpinum.-History:...

     exists in the province of Frosinone
    Province of Frosinone
    The Province of Frosinone is a province in the Lazio region of Italy, with 91 comuni . Its capital is the city of Frosinone. It has an area of 3,244 km², and a total population of 489,042 .The Province was established by Royal Decree on 6 December 1926 with territories belonging to Lazio...


External links

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