Piedmont (/ ˈpiːdmɒnt / PEED-mont; Italian: Piedmont, pronounced ; Piedmontese, Occitan and arpitano: Piedmontese, Piedmontese pronunciation: ) is a region of northwestern Italy, one of the 20 regions of the country . It borders Liguria to the south, Lombardy and the regions of Emilia-Romagna to the east and Valle d'Aosta to the north-west; it also borders with Switzerland in the north-east and France in the west. It has an area of 25,402 square kilometers (9,808 square miles) and a population of 4,377,941 as of November 30, 2017. The capital of Piedmont is Turin.
The name Piedmont derives from the medieval Latin Pedemontium or Pedemontis, that is, ad pedem montium, which means "at the foot of the mountains" (the Alps) attested in documents of the late twelfth century.
Other Piedmontese cities with over 20,000 inhabitants sorted by population:
Piedmont is surrounded on three sides by the Alps, including Monviso, where the Po rises, and Monte Rosa. It borders with France (Auvergne-Rhône-Alps and Provence-Alps-French Riviera), Switzerland (Ticino and Valais) and the Italian regions of Lombardy, Liguria, Valle d'Aosta and for a very small fragment with Emilia Romagna .
The geography of Piedmont is mountainous for 43.3%, together with vast areas of hills (30.3%) and plains (26.4%).
Piedmont is the second largest of the 20 Italian regions, after Sicily. It largely coincides with the upper part of the water catchment area of the river Po, which rises from the slopes of Monviso in the western part of the region and is the largest river in Italy. The Po drains the semicircle formed by the Alps and the Apennines, which surrounds the region on three sides.
From the highest peaks, the ground descends towards the hilly areas (sometimes with a sharp transition from the mountain to the plain) and then upwards, and then towards the low Po valley. The border between the two is characterized by springs - typical of the Po Valley - which provide fresh water to rivers and a dense network of irrigation channels.
The countryside is very varied: from the rugged peaks of the Monte Rosa and Gran Paradiso massifs to the wet rice fields of Vercelli and Novara, from the rolling hills of the Langhe, Roero and Montferrat to the plains. 7.6% of the entire territory is considered a protected area. There are 56 different national or regional parks, one of the most famous being the Gran Paradiso National Park located between Piedmont and the Aosta Valley.
Piedmont was inhabited in the early historical times by Celtic-Ligurian tribes such as the Taurini and the Salassi. Subsequently they were subdued by the Romans (about 220 BC), who founded several colonies including Augusta Taurinorum (Turin) and Eporedia (Ivrea). After the fall of the Western Roman Empire, the region was subsequently invaded by the Burgundians, the Ostrogoths (5th century), the Eastern Romans, the Lombards (6th century) and the Franks (773).
In the IX-X century there were further incursions by the Magyars, the Saracens and the Muslim Moors. At the time, Piedmont, as part of the Kingdom of Italy within the Holy Roman Empire, was divided into several marches and counties.
In 1046, Oddo di Savoia added Piedmont to its main territory of Savoy, with capital in Chambéry (now in France). Other areas remained independent, such as the powerful municipalities of Asti and Alessandria and the Marquisates of Saluzzo and Montferrat. The County of Savoy was elevated to a duchy in 1416 and Duke Emanuele Filiberto moved his seat to Turin in 1563. In 1720, the Duke of Savoy became king of Sardinia, founding what evolved in the Kingdom of Sardinia and increasing the importance of Turin as European capital.
The Republic of Alba was created in 1796 as a French clientel republic in Piedmont. A new client republic, the Piedmontese Republic, existed between 1798 and 1799 before being re-occupied by Austrian and Russian troops. In June 1800 a third clientel republic was established, the Subalpine Republic, in Piedmont. It fell under full French control in 1801 and was annexed by France in September 1802. The Kingdom of Sardinia was restored at the Congress of Vienna and also received the Republic of Genoa to strengthen it as a barrier against France.
Piedmont was a launching pad for the unification of Italy in 1859-1861, following previous unsuccessful wars against the Austrian Empire in 1820-1821  and 1848-1849. This process is sometimes called Piemontization. However, efforts were subsequently thwarted by rural farmers' efforts
Read more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piedmont