History of Canton Ticino - Switzerland
Canton Ticino (TI)
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  • Geographical Information 
  • Demographic Information 
  • History of Canton Ticino
  • Switzerland
  • Lugano
  • Panorama on the lake of Luagano
    Hold Lugano

    GEOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION:

    Surface area : 2,812 square kilometers
    Political municipalities : 245


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    DEMOGRAPHIC INFORMATION:

    1995 Statistical information

    Permenent resident population : 305,200
    Foreigners : 27.1%
    Population density : 79/km
    Live births : 3,100
    Deaths : 2,700
    Joblessness : 9,334 (annual average)

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    HISTORY:
    The Canton of Ticino takes its name from the Ticino River which runs into Lake Maggiore from the north.

    About 500 BC the Celts and Helvetii tribes lived in north and west Switzerland and by 100BC the Roman culture started to blossom. About the year 260 AD Germanic Alemanni entered Switzerland followed by the German Burgundians who settled in the west in 443 AD.

    By 600 Churraetie and Alemannia had become part of the Franconian Empire. At the same time the country was Christianised and in 800 became part of the Holy Roman Empire. About 1200 the St Gotthard Pass was traversed opening up the Alpine valleys to the trade routes. Throughout the 1300s various regions joined the Swiss Confederation and in 1414 it expanded to include Ticino.

    The administration of the Italian-speaking baillifs in Ticino was a blemish on the character of the old Swiss Confederation and the countryside fell into neglect. 

    Lugano, Locarno, Mendrisio and the Maggia-Valley were a gift of Maximilian Sforza of the Duchy of Milano due to the liberation of Milan in 1512. In 1515 after the defeat at Marignano Switzerland's famous neutrality began. After the Thirty Years Way (1618-1648) the Peace of Westphalia gave legal recognition to Switzerland's independence. 

    In1798, the Ticino area requested to remain with the Helvetic Republic instead of becoming part of Napoleon's Cisalpinian Republic which emerged in 1803. Napoleon's Mediation Act settled much of the civil strife creating 19 cantons including that of Ticino/Tessin. At Napoleon's defeat in 1815 the Swiss Federation was enlarged to 22 cantons and Europe's big powers guaranteed Switzerland's territory and recognized the nation's permanent neutrality.

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