... there was the village of Villanova, around the first millennium BC, in the Iron Age; it was made up of huts, where a community of craftsmen and traders used to live. Around the 6th century BC, Etruscans started to settle in this territory, founding Felsina, around 550 BC, which was then taken by the Gauls, which brought the settlement to a state of decadence. Felsina became a Roman colony in 191 BC and changed its name into Bonomia, that Martial defined as "cultured" city. With the fall of the Roman Empire, Bomonia went through a period of sheer decadence, under the barbarians' attacks.
Between 482 and 565, under emperor Giustiniano, the city became part of the Eastern Roman Empire but after the conquest of Charlemagne in 774, who took it from the Longobards who came after the Byzantines, it passed under the Church. In 1088, year of foundation of its prestigious university, Bologna became the most important centre for law studies in Europe, and in this period the city became also a Commune.
Bologna started to develop from a political, social and economical point of view and in 1176 it joined the Lombard League defeating Federico Barbarossa and in 1249, in the Fossalta battle, his successor, Federico II. His son Renzo was captured and imprisoned in the building that, still today, bears its name, King Renzo. After a period of decadence, the city passed under the Lordship of Taddeo Pepoli, who made it a wealthy city again. In this period the Basilica of San Petronio was erected and the lordship passed to the Bentivoglio family, from 1445 to 1506, when pope Julius II reacquired the city once again.
At this point, Bologna was the capital of the northern part of the Papal State and in 1503 emperor Charles V was crowned there. It is also a flourishing artistic period, thanks to artists like Guido Reni, Guercino and Carracci. The Napoleonic period was a positive one for Bologna, and the city was appointed Capital of the Cispadane Republic. Between 1831 and 1848 went through the uprisings of the Risorgimento, which led to the expulsion of the Austrians and in 1859 it was annexed to the Savoy Kingdom. At the beginning of the 19th century, the city evolved its structure, until the Second World War, and sensibly developed from an economic point of view.