Follow the links to watch beautiful videos of Trieste.
Trieste was a town of 5,700 inhabitants when it was proclaimed an imperial free port by Charles VI in 1719, and its population had reached 156,000 when it was deprived of the privilege in 1891. It became the prosperous main port of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and served as the headquarters of the Austrian Lloyd Steam Navigation Company and of other shipping lines, with a seaborne trade in 1913 of 6,200,000 metric tons. In the Austrian census of 1910, nearly two-thirds of the city’s population of 229,510 was composed of Italians (Austrian and Italian subjects), the rest being Slovenes and Croats, other Austrian subjects (including Germans), and foreigners. The Italian preponderance was the ground on which, in the secret treaty of London of April 26, 1915, Great Britain, France, and Russia agreed to give the city to Italy at the conclusion of World War I as part of a group of territorial concessions rewarding Italian alliance with the Triple Entente.
Trieste is the most windy city in Italy. The BORA, the strong wind that blows in Trieste. It can reach 200km/h. After a Bora windstorm, the air is clean, pure and all the smog is gone.
The arrangement fulfilled a long-stated goal of Italian irredentism, the movement to include all Italian-speaking territories as part of Italy. Trieste was occupied by Italian troops in 1918 and later lost most of its maritime trade because it was cut off by a political frontier from its natural hinterland. The volume of merchandise handled fell to 2,200,000 tons in 1930–34, but Italy maintained and developed, with government subsidies, the shipbuilding industries, steel mills, oil refineries, and insurance business. A university was founded there in 1938.
The Free Territory status was unworkable, however, and deadlock immediately followed the ratification of the treaty. After the failure of British and U.S. proposals to include the Free Territory in Italy (1948) or to divide it between Italy and Yugoslavia on the existing zonal basis (1953), negotiations in 1954 resulted in an agreement granting Zone B and part of Zone A to Yugoslavia (202 square miles [523 square km]) and the city of Trieste and the remainder of Zone A (91 square miles [236 square km]) to Italy. Italy agreed to maintain Trieste as a free port, and the Italian and Yugoslav governments agreed to a special statute regulating the rights of national minorities on both sides of the demarcation line. By an October 1975 treaty, Italy relinquished all claims to Zone B, settling finally the status of the region.
In 1963 Trieste was designated the capital of the newly formed autonomous regione of Friuli-Venezia Giulia. Trieste provincia, with an area of 82 square miles (212 square km), has an economy based chiefly on the activities of its port.
Roman ruins in the city of Trieste include a theatre and an archway. The campanile of the Cathedral of San Giusto incorporates part of a Roman temple. The old German (Austrian) town, called Triest, was built around Monte Giusto, a hill that is dominated by the Castello (1470–1680), now housing a medieval museum, and by the Cathedral of San Giusto, formed in the 14th century by the union of two earlier churches. The modern city, begun in 1719 on the flatland adjoining the bay, is characterized by broad streets and typical 18th-century Baroque and 19th-century Neoclassical architecture. During the 1850s Miramare Castle was built nearby for Archduke Maximilian (later Emperor Maximilian of Mexico).