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Founded by the Cumans in the eighth century BC, it was one of the most important cities of Magna Graecia and played a significant commercial, cultural and religious role towards the surrounding Italic populations. After the collapse of the Roman Empire, in the eighth century the city formed an autonomous duchy independent of the Byzantine Empire; later, from the thirteenth century and for more than five hundred years, it was the capital of the Kingdom of Naples; with the Restoration it became the capital of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies under the Bourbons until the unification of Italy.

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