Treviso began its history as a centre inhabited in the Bronze Age, whereas the Roman city of Tarvisium underwent a phase of considerable development in the era of the communes. Spared by Attila, it flourished under the Goths and the Lombards who made it a duchy. In the Middle Ages it experienced its most glorious era and after a period of conflict between the Guelphs and Ghibellines for domination, it spontaneously joined the Republic of Venice in 1339. The city was subsequently disputed between Austria and Italia until 1866. It suffered from bombing in the 1915-18 war, but even more so in the Second World War, when bombing by the Americans led to thousands of victims and destroyed many public buildings and monuments of considerable historic interest.
The city and its monuments
Treviso still conserves many of the painted houses which once characterised it. The Sile and Cagnan rivers, which meet here, give a special fascination to the historic centre, surrounded by its 16th century walls. Houses rising out or leaning over of the water, with fresco decoration on the façades and arcades running along the canals; this magical and harmonious atmosphere conserves a monumental, historic and artistic heritage of great value. In Treviso the Duomo of San Pietro, the Malchiostro chapel, the church of San Nicolò and the Civic Museum, with works by Bellini, Lotto, Titian and Bassano, should be visited. Finally, in Piazza dei Signori, there is an elegant succession of old communal buildings, creating a solemn and harmonious architectural setting with a medieval flavour.
The geographical area
The whole Treviso area contains a wealth of artistic and architectural treasures. In addition to the villas, there are enchanting towns such as Asolo, which lies on the gentle slopes of the rolling hills and is characterised by its medieval and renaissance architecture. A popular subject for painters it has always been frequented by famous visitors, such as Giosuè Carducci, Eleonora Duse, Ezra Pound and Stravinsky. Again in the area known as the Marca Gioiosa, we find Castelfranco Veneto, one of the most intact walled cities and the birthplace of Giorgione. Along the Piave wine route the itinerary is dotted with vineyards, alternating with innumerable artistic towns, such as Conegliano, Vittorio Veneto and Oderzo, all illustrating the beauty of the artistic and environmental heritage of the province.