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Città di Sarzana
Sarzana - Panorama (da Monte Caprione).JPG
Coat of arms of Sarzana
Coat of arms
Sarzana is located in Italy
Location of Sarzana in Italy
Coordinates: 44°07′N 09°58′E / 44.117°N 9.967°E / 44.117; 9.967
Country Italy
Region Liguria
Province La Spezia (SP)
Frazioni Marinella di Sarzana, Falcinello, Sarzanello, San Lazzaro
 • Mayor Alessio Cavarra (from 2013)
 • Total 34 km2 (13 sq mi)
Elevation 21 m (69 ft)
Population (30 November 2010)
 • Total 21,978
 • Density 650/km2 (1,700/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Sarzanesi
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 19038
Dialing code 0187
Patron saint St. Andrew
Saint day November 30
Website Official website

Sarzana (Italian pronunciation: [sarˈdzaːna]) is a town, comune (municipality) and former short-lived Catholic bishopric in the Province of La Spezia, of Liguria region, northwestern Italy, 15 kilometres (9 mi) east of Spezia, on the railway to Pisa, at the point where the railway to Parma diverges to the north. In 2010 it had a population of 21,978.


The position of Sarzana, at the entrance to the valley of the Magra (ancient Macra), the boundary between Etruria and Liguria in Roman times, gave it military importance in the Middle Ages. The first mention of the city is found in 983 in a diploma of Otto I; in 1202 the episcopal see was transferred from the ancient Luni, 5 kilometres (3 mi) southeast, to Sarzana.

Sarzana, owing to its position, changed masters more than once, belonging first to Pisa, then to Florence, then to the Banco di S. Giorgio of Genoa and from 1572 to dogal Genoa itself.

The fortress of Sarzana.

These changes left in Sarzana a conspicuous fortress, which remains a focus of attraction for people interested in military history and specifically in the history of fortifications (see Star fortress).[1]

In 1814 it was assigned to the Kingdom of Sardinia, the frontier between Liguria and Tuscany being now made to run between it and Carrara.

In 1921 Sarzana was the scene of fights (Italian: Fatti di Sarzana) between the population and Mussolini's Fascist squads. During them, a small group of Carabinieri and, alter, simple citizens opposed and pushed back some 300 armed Fascists who had come to devastate the town, killing some of them.

During the German occupation of Italy in World War II, Sarzana was a center of partisan resistance.[2]

Ecclesiastical History[edit]

The Diocese of Sarzana was established on 1975.08.04, on territory reassigned from the suppressed Roman Catholic Diocese of Luni–Sarzana. It was immediately joined in personal union (aeque principaliter) with the bishopric of Brugnato and diocese of La Spezia from 1975.08.04 until their merger in 1986.09.30

On 1986.09.30 it was suppressed, its territory and titles being merged into the Diocese of La Spezia–Sarzana–Brugnato, to which the bishop was appointed.

Its only incumbent as suffragan Bishop of Sarzana was

  • Siro Silvestri (1975.09.03 – 1986.09.30), also last Bishop of Brugnato (Italy) (1975.09.03 – 1986.09.30) and last Bishop of La Spezia (Italy) (1975.09.03 – 1986.09.30); previously Bishop of Foligno (Italy) (1955.07.21 – 1975.09.03); later first Bishop of La Spezia–Sarzana–Brugnato (Italy) (1986.09.30 – resigned 1989.12.07), died 1997.06.14.

Main sights[edit]

Notable locals[edit]

  • A branch of the Cadolingi di Borgonuovo family, Lords of Fucecchio in Tuscany from the 10th century onwards, which had acquired the name of Buonaparte, had settled near Sarzana before 1264. In 1512 a member of the family (Francesco Buonaparte, who died in 1540) permanently took up residence in Ajaccio, becoming the founder of the Corsican line of Buonapartes and hence a direct forebear of Sebastiano Nicola Buonaparte. He in turn was the great-grandfather of the emperor Napoleon I (who was born in Corsica in 1769).

International relations[edit]

Sister cities / twin towns[edit]


The Köppen Climate Classification subtype for this climate is "Csb"(Mediterranean Climate).[3]


  1. ^ Harris, J., "Sarzana and Sarzanello - Transitional Design and Renaissance Designers", Fort (Fortress Study Group), No. 37, 2009, pp. 50-78
  2. ^ Tacconi, Francesco. "La Fortezza - Comune di Sarzana". Retrieved 2015-07-22. 
  3. ^ Climate Summary for Sarzana, Italy

Sources and External links[edit]