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Location of Botoșani
|• Mayor||Ovidiu Portariuc (Social Democratic Party)|
|• Total||40.7 km2 (15.7 sq mi)|
|Elevation||170 m (560 ft)|
|Population (2011 census)|
|• Density||2,625/km2 (6,800/sq mi)|
|Time zone||EET (UTC+2)|
|• Summer (DST)||EEST (UTC+3)|
|Area code(s)||(+40) 231|
Botoșani (Romanian pronunciation: [botoˈʃanʲ] ( listen)) (Hungarian: Botosány, Polish: Botoszany, German: Botoschan) is the capital city of Botoșani County, in the northern part of Moldavia, Romania. Today, it is best known as the birthplace of many celebrated Romanians, including Mihai Eminescu, Nicolae Iorga and Grigore Antipa.
Origin of the name
The name of the city probably has its origin in the name of a boyar family called Botaș, whose name can be found in old records from the time of Prince Stephen the Great (late 15th century) as one of the most important families of Moldavia, records which trace it back to the 11th century.
Botoșani is first mentioned in 1439, in which one chronicle says that "the Mongols came and pillaged all the way to Botușani". The town is then mentioned only during the conflicts between Moldavia and Poland: several battles were fought near the town, in 1500, 1505 and 1509. During the reign of Petru Rareș, the town was set ablaze by the Poles. It was during his reign then that we know that the town had a hill fort.
In the 15th century, it was still not a fully-fledged town, but archeological evidence shows that it was a pre-urban settlement. During the second part of the 14th century, some Transylvanian colonists (most likely German or Hungarian) settled in Botoșani. Additionally, a large community of Armenian traders settled in the 14th or 15th centuries.
Being placed at the junction of several commercial roads (including the "Moldavian Road", which linked Iași to Hotin) the city was initially a market town; in 1579 it already had "the biggest and the oldest fair of Moldavia".
The presence of a large Jewish community began in the city during the 17th century.
Some of the most famous Romanian cultural representatives such as Mihai Eminescu, Romania's national poet, and Nicolae Iorga, the famous Romanian historian, were born in Botoșani. Contemporary poet Maria Baciu also hails from Botoșani.
It is also the location of A.T. Laurian National College, one of Romania's oldest (founded 1859) and more prestigious pre-university educational institutions.
|Source: Census data|
Historically Jewish people constituted a large part of the population, as much as 15,502 (53%) in 1942. As of 2011 census data, Botoșani has a population of 106,847, a decrease from the figure recorded at the 2002 census, making it the 19th largest city in Romania. The ethnic makeup was as follows:
Boasting a rich cultural life, the city of Botoșani has long produced major personalities in the science and culture. Botoșani natives like Mihai Eminescu, Nicolae Iorga and Octav Onicescu have become major figures in diverse disciplines, and many have distinct claims to relevance not just within Romania, but on a worldwide level.
- "Ciomac Cantemir House" (historic monument dating from 1800), today the headquarters of the "Ștefan Luchian" foundation ();
- "Nicolae Iorga" Memorial House, situated in one of the houses where great historian Nicolae Iorga passed his childhood. Two sections of the house hold a photo documentary exposition and an exhibition of Iorga's first written editions. Another section holds a regularly updated library of history. The Iorga family's salon boasts an interior dating from the final decades of the 19th century;
- "Octav Onicescu" Memorial Museum, realized in October 1995, houses the furniture that once belonged to the mathematician and philosopher Octav Onicescu. In addition, there are also his manuscripts, writings, diplomas, books from his personal library, family photos, and decorations, offering an intimate portrait of a Romanian polymath;
- County Museum (Ethnographic section), housed in a fine example of late-18th-century architecture that once served as the house of Manolache Iorga, the grandfather of the great historian Nicolae Iorga. Open to the public since 1989, the museum displays the most important elements of the area's rural culture; artifacts of the principal occupations (farming, animal husbandry, hunting, fishing, and beekeeping), traditional crafts (spinning, embroidery, furriery, pottery), traditional costumes, and other customary and traditional crafts specific to the Botoşani region.
- County Museum (Historical and Archaeological section), housed in a historic monument dating from 1913, presents in its 17 rooms the story of Botoșani's evolution from prehistory to the present. Exhibits include the dawn of civilization in the region, from the paleolithic era, to the neolithic era (with Cucuteni ceramics), and finishing with the Bronze and Iron Ages. More notable displays include weapons made of sharpened stone and bone, decorated pottery, anthropomorphic and zoomorphic figurines, seals belonging to the lords of Moldavia, and historic jewelry. The museum also includes artifacts from the oldest human habitation found in southeastern Europe, discovered in Ripiceni and partially reconstructed and displayed inside the museum.
- "Ștefan Luchian" Art Galleries, the fine-arts section of the County Museum, pays tribute to Botoșani's rich artistic heritage, including the paintings of Ștefan Luchian, Octav Băncilă, and many other contemporary artists; the works of many renowned illustrators, foremost among them Ligia Macovei, the most celebrated illustrator of the poems of Eminescu; the sculptures of Iulia Onila and Dan Covătaru; and the tapestries of Cela Neamţu, Aspazia Burduja, and Ileana Balotă;
- "Mihai Eminescu" National Theatre; the building was opened in 1914, partially destroyed by the bombings of 1944, and restored in 1958 and again in the 1990s. The theatre hosts a team of actors whose remarkable evolution was crowned by their winning of the Grand Prize at the International Theatre Festival in 2001 at Piatra Neamț. The Grand Hall of the theatre also hosts numerous other cultural activities, of which the most notable are the concerts of the Botoșani State Philharmonic.
- "Vasilache" Puppet Theatre; home to a troupe of puppeteers appreciated not only in Romania but also abroad, as evidenced by their win at the International Puppet Festival in Silistra, June 2001. Every two years the theatre organizes the International Gala of Puppet Theatre, which brings to Botoșani the most prestigious names in puppet theatre, from Romania and abroad;
- Botoşani National Philharmonica, who generally perform in a 19th-century neoclassical building known as Vila Ventura, are renowned all over the county, its artists often finding themselves invited on a permanent basis to participate in concerts throughout Romania and abroad. The Philharmonic is the principal organizer of the series of tributes to George Enescu, tributes which benefit each year from the presence of the great personalities of Romanian art and culture;
- "Rapsozii Botoșanilor" Ensemble, a long-standing folkloric orchestra with a history stretching back for decades, presents a multitude of folkloric songs from Moldavia and the rest of Romania under the direction of its renowned leader, Maestro Ioan Cobâlă. The ensemble has long been associated with the greatest names in Moldavian folklore, such as Sofia Vicoveanca, Laura Lavric, and Daniela Condurache, and continues to nurture the next generation of folkloric talent. The artists of the ensemble are recognized nationally and internationally by virtue of their television appearances and their winning of numerous prizes;
- "Mihai Eminescu" County Library, housed in a building known as the "Casa Moscovici," a late-19th-century structure that combines French and German architectural elements in a unique synthesis. The library contains a collection of around 380,000 volumes;
- The Old Centre (The Old Downtown) is the oldest part of the city from an architectural standpoint, bringing together a large number of commercial buildings dating from the 17th and 18th centuries.
A series of historic churches built by the Lords of Moldavia :
- "Uspenia" Church - founded by Elena Rareş, the wife of king Petru Rareș, in 1552; the site of the christening of Mihai Eminescu.
- "Sfântu Gheorghe" Church - founded by Elena Rareş in 1551.
- "Sfântu Nicolae" Church (Popăuți) - founded by Stephen the Great in 1496. The monastery is surrounded by walls, giving the appearance of a small citadel.
Botoșani boasts many other constructions of special architectural value, among them: the Antipa House, from the end of the 19th century; the Bolfosu House, from the beginning of the 19th century; the Silion House, dating from 1900; and the City Hall, built at the end of the 18th century in an eclectic style with German influences.
|Climate data for Botoșani|
|Record high °C (°F)||17
|Average high °C (°F)||1
|Average low °C (°F)||−6
|Record low °C (°F)||−27
|Average precipitation days||14||13||13||15||14||14||13||10||10||9||13||15||153|
|Average rainy days||4||4||7||14||14||14||13||10||10||9||9||7||115|
|Average snowy days||12||10||7||2||0||0||0||0||0||1||5||9||46|
Botoșani is served by Suceava "Ștefan cel Mare" Airport (SCV), located 30.5 km (19.0 mi) west of the city centre.
Public transportation is provided by a tram network with two tram lines, 101 and 102, since 1991. There is no bus network in the city, being one of the only city without bus network in Romania. There are also 5 lines of bus vans. The local council will update the tram system.
FC Botoșani is the football team that represents Botoșani.
Twin towns — Sister cities
Botoșani is twinned with:
- Florin Andone
- Grigore Antipa
- Octav Băncilă
- Israil Bercovici
- Max Blecher
- Demostene Botez
- Pascal Covici
- Georgeta Damian
- Mihai Eminescu
- Reuven Feuerstein
- Alexandru Graur
- Nicolae Iorga
- Isidore Isou
- Dan Lungu
- Dan Lupu
- Octav Onicescu
- Henric Sanielevici
- Simion Sanielevici
- Ion Sân-Giorgiu
- Adolf Josef Storfer
- "Ovidiu Portariuc (USL) este câștigătorul alegerilor pentru Primăria Botoșani" (in Romanian). administratie.ro. 11 June 2012. Retrieved 16 June 2012.
- "Population at 20 October 2011" (in Romanian). INSSE. 5 July 2013. Retrieved 5 July 2013.[permanent dead link]
- Rădvan, p.469
- Rădvan, p.470
- Lavi, Theodore. "Botoşani". JewishGen, Inc. Encyclopedia of Jewish Communities in Romania, Volume 1 (Romania).
- "Botosani, Romania: Monthly - All Weather Averages". Weatherbase. CantyMedia. 2016. Retrieved 16 October 2011.
- Rădvan, Laurențiu (2010). At Europe's Borders: Medieval Towns in the Romanian Principalities. Translated by Valentin Cîrdei. Brill. ISBN 9789004180109.
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