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[chee-vee-tahvek-kyah] /ˌtʃi viˈtɑvɛk kyɑ/
a city on the Tyrrhenian Sea in W central Italy: chief port of Rome. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Encyclopedia Article for Civitavecchia

town and episcopal see, Lazio (Latium) regione, the principal port for Rome and central Italy and the main ferry link with the island of Sardinia. The port, situated on the Tyrrhenian Sea, was founded early in the 2nd century by the emperor Trajan on a stretch of coast known as Centumcellae. The Porto di Traiano ("Trajan's Port") is preserved in the central part of the modern port. The town flourished during late Roman times, but it was attacked by the Vandals and destroyed by the Saracens in 828. The people fled to the Allumiere Mountains, where a walled town was constructed by Pope Leo IV in 854. Later, the inhabitants returned to the old site (hence the name Civitavecchia, meaning "old city").

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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