Campobasso

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Campobasso (IPA: [kampoˈbasso]  ( listen); Campobassan dialect Cambuàsce, IPA: [kambuˈwaʃʃə]) is a city and comune in southern Italy, the capital of the Molise region and of the province of Campobasso. It is located in the high basin of the Biferno river, surrounded by the Sannio and Matese mountains.

Campobasso is renowned for the craftmanship of blades (including scissors and knives), a fact well documented since the 14th century. It is also famous for the production of pears and scamorza (cheese). The city is the home of the University of Molise and of the Archdiocese of Campobasso-Boiano.

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Climate

Situated 700 metres above sea level and close to the Apennine Mountains, Campobasso is considered one of the coldest cities of southern Italy, with an average temperature of about 12°C (+2 in winter, +22 in summer). During winter snowfalls are frequent. The wettest time of year is the autumn with about 81 mm of rain in November.

History

The origins of Campobasso are disputed. According to the most widely held theory, the city was founded by the Lombards before the 8th century, as a fortified camp on the slope of the hill where the castle stands. The original name was Campus vassorum, suggesting that the city was the seat of the vassals of the Duke of Spoleto.

After the Norman conquest of Southern Italy, Campobasso lost its importance as a defensive stronghold, but became a significant trading and administration centre.

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