Rimini

Latin Ariminum, Rimini, town, Emilia-Romagna, northern Italy. It is situated at the mouth of Marecchia River on the Riviera del Sol of the Adriatic Sea, northeast of Mount Titano.

It was called Ariminum by the Romans, after Ariminus, the name of the Marecchia. According to Strabo, a 1st century BC Greek historian, the site belonged to the Umbro–Etruscan civilization. It was occupied by the Romans in 268 BC. A Latin colony was established on the border of Umbria and Aemilia. It was the intersection of two great Roman roads, the Via Aemilia (or Via Flaminia), and it became a Roman municipality. The dictator Sulla later overthrew it. The Council of Rimini was held in the town in 359 AD. It failed to settle the Arian dispute over the divinity of Christ. Rimini was passed to the Byzantines. It was then handed to the Goths. The Goths then reclaimed it from the Byzantine general Narses.

The town was a long-standing target of papal-imperial rivalry. This was especially true after it became an independent municipality in the 12th Century. Malatesta da Verucchio, the Guelf (papal) leader, was made podesta (“mayor”) 1239. However internal strife continued until the Malatesta family became the town’s lords in 1334. Gianciotto (Malatesta), the Lame, killed Francesca da Polenta’s wife and her brother Paolo, their secret lover. The tragedy was immortalized by Dante’s Inferno as well as Silvio Pellico’s Francesca da Rimini.

Sigismondo Pandelfo (1417-188) is the most famous of the Malatesta lords. He was a soldier and arts patron and was responsible for Rimini’s 15th-century fortifications. The Malatesta Temple was also a monument that glorifies his love for Isotta Degli Atti. Sigismondo was accused in the murders of his first and second wives to marry Isotta. In 1461, Pope Pius II indicted him for his suspicions and quarrels regarding the papacy and other rulers. Sigismondo was forced to submit to the pope and gave most of his territory to him, leaving Rimini and a few lands. Roberto, his illegitimate child, succeeded him and became the commander of the papal military. Roberto’s son Sigismondo failed against Cesare Borgoia to defend his lands, and Rimini was handed over to the Papal States. The city was under papal control except for a brief French dominance during the Napoleonic Wars. It was annexed by the Kingdom of Italy in 1806.

Rimini grew beyond its walls in the 19th century and became a beach resort. This development was accelerated by the creation of suburbs to the south of the city in 1920. Despite suffering heavy damage from the Allied bombardment during World War II, Rimini was able to recover. The city’s coast resorts extend for almost 10 miles (16km) between Torre Pedrera e Miramare.

The Arch of Augustus was built in 27 BC. It was completed in 22 AD by Tiberius. Also, the bridge that Augustus built over the river by Tiberius (AD 21) and the remains of a Roman amphitheater are other Roman remains. The Malatesta Temple was built from the original Gothic Church of San Francesco. It was designed by Leon Battista Alberti and is decorated with beautiful reliefs of a pagan nature and the intertwined initials S & I (for Sigismondo & Isotta). The castle (1446) remains a ruin, as well as the town walls built by Sigismondo Pandelfo. The Palazzo dell’Arengo, restored (1204), is another notable building. It also houses the picture gallery, civic library, as well as several Renaissance and medieval churches.

Rimini is an important road center and railway junction with lines to Brindisi and Trieste, Bologna, Turin, and Venice. There are also sea connections to Ancona and Ravenna and Venice. Miramare is the nearest airport. The hinterland is home to fruit and cereals, as well as processing plants and shops that repair railway lines. Tourism is the main source of income. Tourists love Rimini’s sporting events, concerts, and international shows.