Nice

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Nice Chronology

There is more to Nice than it's sunny beaches and turqoise waters. Before it became the luxurious resort it is today, Nice went a long way from the Greek settlement it once used to be, through turmoils and times of greatness, to the present-day capital of the French Riviera.


Early History
350 BC Greeks of Marseille found a city called Nikaia named after Nike - the Greek goddess of victory, later to become Nice.
7th Century Nice joins the Genoese League.
729 Nice repulses the Saracens.
859 and 880 The Saracens burn the city.
10th Century Most of the time the Saracens remain in control of the surrounding country.
972 The traditions and origins of Nicois feasts form.
974 William of Provence chases the Saracens out of Eastern Provence and unites the region.
11-14th Century
1032 Provence joins the Holy Roman Empire.
1229 Nice is incorporated into the Catalan county of Provence.
1382 A civil war breaks out.
1388 The commune seeks the protection of the Counts of Savoy to escape their victorious rivals.
16-17th Century
1538 The two monarchs, Charles V and Francis I, conclude a ten-year truce.
1543 Nice is attacked by the forces of Francis I and Barbarossa Hayreddin Pasha. The city surrenders after a long fight, it is pillaged and 2,500 captives are carried away.
1550 and 1580 There is pestilence in the city.
1600 Nice is taken captive by the duke of Guise.
1626 Charles Emmanuel opens the ports to all nations and proclaims free trade, thus providing stimulus to the city’s commerce.
1691 Nice is taken over by Catinat.
1696 Nice is restored to Savoy.
Modern History 18-20th Century
1705 Nice is besieged by the French.
1713 The city is given back to Savoy once again with the Utrecht treaty and the new town is built in the following peaceful years.
From 1744 to 1748 French and Spaniards claim ownership of the city.
1775 The king of Sardinia destroys all that remained of the ancient liberties of the commune.
1792 The County of Nice is conquered by the armies of the First French Republic and continues to be a part of France until 1814.
1793 Alps Maritimes department is created.
1814 Sardinia claims Nice again.
1821-1822 There is an unusually sharp frost which does not allow for any construction, consequently there's significant unemployment.
1860 A treaty concluded this year between Napoleon III and the Sardinian king gives Nice to France as a reward for the assistance of the French in the Second Italian War for Independence against Austria. 25,000 electors voted for such a solution.
20th Century At the beginning of the Century new means of transport appeared.
1900 Tramway de Nice is powered by electricity for the first time and spreads its network to Menton and Cagnes-sur-Mer.
1920s The region is a mecca for writers and artists, such as Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Thomas Mann and Aldous Huxley.
1922 Train Bleu- a luxurious train, makes its first run from Calais to the Cote d’Azur.
1927 The first casino on the coast is opened.
Second half of 20th Century Jean Medecin and his son Jacques are mayors of Nice.
1942 Nazi Germany invades France; Nice is occupied by the Italians.
1944 Allied forces land on the coast in August that year and the area is liberated.
1962 Algeria negotiates its freedom from France.
October 16, 1979 The cost of Nice is hit by a tsunami that causes 23 deaths.
1990 Jacques Médecin escapes from France because of an accusation of political corruption.
1993 Jacques Médecin is arrested in Uruguay.
1994 Jacques Médecin is extradited and convicted.
1995 Jacques Peyrat, a member of UMP, becomes the mayor of Nice.
21st Century
2001 Jacques Peyrat is re-electd for mayor.
2003 Nice is the fifth most populated city in France with 345,892 inhabitants and receives more than 4 million visitors each year.