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The traditional founding is identified with the dedication of the first church, that of San Giacomo on the islet of Rialto (Rivoalto, "High Shore") — said to have taken place at the stroke of noon on 25 March 421 (the Feast of the Annunciation).Beginning as early as AD 166 to 168, the Quadi and Marcomanni destroyed the main center in the area, the current Oderzo.Parts of Venice are renowned for the beauty of their settings, their architecture, and artwork.In 2014, 264,579 people resided in Comune di Venezia, of whom around 55,000 live in the historic city of Venice (Centro storico).After the Napoleonic Wars and the Congress of Vienna, the Republic was annexed by the Austrian Empire, until it became part of the Kingdom of Italy in 1866, following a referendum held as a result of the Third Italian War of Independence.
Settlement on the islands in the lagoon probably increased with the Lombard conquest of other Byzantine territories, as refugees sought asylum there.
The city-state of Venice is considered to have been the first real international financial center which gradually emerged from the 9th century to its peak in the 14th century.
It is also known for its several important artistic movements, especially the Renaissance period.
The monastery of St Zachary and the first ducal palace and basilica of St.
Mark, as well as a walled defense (civitatis murus) between Olivolo and Rialto, were subsequently built here.