The name derives from the latin word "Aeporedia", a name of Celtic origin, a fusion of "epo" (horse) and "redia" (cart). Ivrea is a town in the province of Turin, located at the mouth of the Aosta Valley in a territory crossed by the Dora Baltea, of which the oldest district is located on a hill overlooking the gorge of the Dora. The banks of the river features a series of XIX century households, whilst in the direction of Turin develops an industrial area. Since the early years of the XX century the city has opened to the industrial development, hosting major firms, without coming less to the respect of the local traditions, famous for its Carnival and the orange fights.
At the time of the Romans Aeporedia was a colony that represented a strategic frontier, given by its proximity to the Val d'Aosta and evidenced by the remains of imposing buildings, such as: the amphitheater, the Roman bridge and the theater. The location made it particularly important during the Middle Ages: it was the capital of a Lombard duchy, a French committee and an important Marquisate seat. Since the IV century it was an episcopal seat and in 825 it became seat of a church university. The city lived a golden period under the rule of the bishop Warmondo and around year 1000, with Arduino, it became the capital of the Kingdom of Italy. In 1313 the local lords swore allegiance to the Savoy. From 1536 to 1559 it suffered the domination of the Spanish and the French, whilst from 1798 to 1814 it became capital of the Department of Dora. In the early XIX century Ivrea lost its military and religious importance, but gained political and administrative strength and renewed its urban structure.
Not to miss:
- the majestic Cathedral of Santa Maria, built in the late X century during the episcopate of Warmond, on the ruins of an existing building and was refurbished several times during the Early Christian times, in the XVIII century and mid XIX century. The building retains traces of all the exciting times when it was remodeled. The neoclassical façade is richly adorned with a pediment supported by four cylindrical columns and four square-based columns and Greek statues. Under the porch it features a Roman sarcophagus of the Augustan period.
- the convent of San Bernardino, built in 1455 in late Gothic style. The church preserves inside an important cycle of frescoes dating from the XV century by Giovanni Martino Spanzotti, depicting stories of life and passion of Christ.
- the rebuilt church of San Lorenzo in 1718.
- the bell tower of the Benedictine Abbey of Santo Stefano destroyed by General Brissac in 1558.
- the church of San Nicola da Tolentino built 1605 and flanked by a Seminarian of the XVIII century.
- the church of St. Ulderico, rebuilt in 1730 and features a Romanesque bell tower.
- the church of Santa Croce with its XIX century façade.
- the chapel of St. Anthony was founded in 1005 and rebuilt probably in the XIV century.
- the Chapel of the Three Kings of 1215, famous for its wooden nativity scene built in the XV century, now on display in the Civic Museum.
- the Castle with Quattro Torri (Four Towers) initiated by Savoy in 1358 and used as a prison since the XVII century. One of the towers was destroyed in 1676.
- the remains of Parlacium, a Roman amphitheater built in the I century A.D.
- Piazza Duomo characterized by the presence of the cathedral, the bishop's towers, and other medieval buildings.
- the Civic Museums which retains an archaeological section, an Oriental Art section and an area with rural paintings of the XV, XVI and XVII centuries.
- the Perrone Palace with its XV century tower of the Talliandi.
- the Guisiana Palace with its XVI century courtyard with its overlooking lodges.
- the Credenza Palace, the former seat of the Town Hall.