Emilia-Romagna, Italy

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Interactive Map of Emilia-Romagna, Italy

Emilia-Romagna, Italy Map Links:

The region of Emilia-Romagna, Italy, covers 8,666 square miles, making it the 6th largest region of the 20 regions in Italy. Emilia-Romagna is located in the northeastern region of Italy, where the plains of the region meet the rolling hills of the Apennine mountains. Emilia-Romagna is among the wealthiest regions in Italy, with the third-highest gross domestic profit in Italy. 

Cities as Seen on a Map of Emilia-Romagna, Italy:

  • Quick Bologna
  • Modena
  • Parma
  • Ravenna
  • Ferrara
  • Rimini
  • Reggio Emilia
  • Forli
  • Piacenza
  • Cesena
  • Carpi
  • Imola
  • Faenza
  • Sassuolo
  • Caselecchio di Reno
  • Cento
  • Riccione
  • Formigine
  • Castelfranco Emilia
  • Lugo
  • San Lazzaro di Savena
  • Valsamoggia
  • Cervia
  • San Giovanni in Persiceto
  • Fidenza
  • Corregio
  • Scandiano
  • Argenta
  • Casalgrande
  • Castel Maggiore
  • Mirandola
  • Castel San Pietro Terme


  • Population = 4.5 million
  • Language = Italian, Emilian, Romagnolo, Romance (Latin, French, and Spanish influences)
  • Ethnicities = Italian, Celtic, Roman
  • Capital = Bologna

The History of Emilia-Romagna

Emilia-Romagna is a combination of the northwestern historical region of Emilia and the southeastern historical region of Romagna. Emilia-Romagna got its name from the influences of Ancient Rome throughout the area. Emilia is named after the Roman road, the Via Aemilia, that connected the city of Piacenza to Rimini. Romagna is named after Romania, the name of the Eastern Roman Empire.

During the first 1000 years after Christ, trade flourished in the region. When the University of Bologna was established in 1088, trade continued to thrive with the help of the university. The University of Bologna is the oldest university in the world. The Papal States took over the region during the 16th century.

By 1860, Emilia-Romagna had become part of the Kingdom of Italy during the Italian Unification. During World War II, northern Italy had become involved in the war by joining the Axis powers. Between April 9 and April 21 of 1945, the Battle of Bologna was fought. 

Allied forces needed to take control of northern Italy, so they devised a plan called Operation Buckland. During this operation, the Allied powers were victorious against the German and Italian forces.

In 1948, the region was officially named Emilia-Romagna.


Italian is the primary language Romance of the region with a region-specific dialect of Emiliano-Romagnolo, but there are a variety of dialects and influences from neighboring cultures. Other Romance languages of the region can include Spanish, French, and Latin influences.


Roman Catholicism is the dominant religion in the region. Emilia-Romagna was part of Ancient Rome until its fall in 476. During and after its fall, many monasteries were built that can still be seen today. Emilia-Romagna was part of the Papal States, which was a region of Italy that was under direct supervision and control of the Pope. 


The geography of Emilia-Romagna has the best of both worlds. There are low-lying hills, which gave the people an area in which to build cities, and there are also plains that gave the people a lifestyle in agriculture. Emilia-Romagna had both urban and rural life to offer the people, which is why it was one of the most inhabited regions of Italy before the great emigration period in 1860 when between 12 and 13 million Italians emigrated from the country in search of work. 


The Emilia-Romagna region is one of the wealthiest in all of Italy. The University of Bologna is located in the region, which is the oldest university in the world. The region thrived on the Roman Empire and the Papal States when other regions failed. Today, you can see the impact that these influences had on the region, through the monasteries, cities, and economy that was built throughout history.

Migration Patterns

The region of Emilia-Romagna, Italy, has always been more populated than other areas because of its high level of commerce. Emilia-Romagna thrived on trade and made use of both agricultural trade as well as industrial trade. The region of Emilia-Romagna gave Italians the choice of an urban or rural way-of-life.

After the Italian Unification in 1860, the economy in the region plunged, leaving millions of Italians without employment. The Industrial Revolution in the western hemisphere was in full force, so about 1.2 million people from Emilia-Romagna took advantage of these opportunities and emigrated from their homelands. 

Since then, immigration to the region has been steady, with Bologna being the targeted destination for those moving into the area. 


The first inhabitants of the Emilia-Romagna region were the Indo-European Celts. Many people may think of Celts being associated with Scotland, Ireland, and Wales. While this is true, Celts also existed in northern Italy. 

Once the Roman Empire took over, the genealogy shifted from Celtic to Roman. After the Roman Empire fell, the region was controlled by the Papal States. The Papal States had strong Roman ties, as they were controlled by the Pope, the leader of Roman Catholicism. 

During World War II, northern Italy had a combination of German, French, American, and British people in the region. 

Today, the genealogy of Emilia-Romagna people can include traces of Celtic, French, German, Spanish, and Roman characteristics. 

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Caleb Pike
About the author

Caleb Pike is an avid hiker and nature lover, with a passion for exploring the great outdoors. He's a writer, photographer, and adventurer, always seeking new trails to blaze and peaks to conquer.