city, northwestern Karnataka (formerly Mysore) state, southern India. It is located in the Western Ghats at an elevation of 2,500 feet (760 m) above sea level. The city dates from the 12th century. It later exercised strategic control over the plateau routes to Goa and the western coast. Its early name, Venugrama, is said to be derived from the bamboos characteristic of the region. A melting pot for the Kannada, Konkani, Marathi, and Goan cultures, modern Belgaum includes the original cantonment, site of an oval stone fortress with a 16th-century mosque and of two Jaina temples, and the suburbs of Shahpur and Madhavpur.
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