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Albenga is a city situated on the Gulf of Genoa on the Italian Riviera in the Province of Savona in Liguria, northern Italy. The economy is mostly based on tourism, local commerce and agriculture. The city is of Celtic origins, the chief town of the Ligures, and flourished as the municipium of Albingaunum under the Roman Empire, owing to its position that offered access from the coast to the interior, and the Via Julia Augusta, the Roman coast road, opened in 13 BCE. A measure of the agricultural prosperity of the region is that Proculus of Albingaunum (executed ca. 281 CE), was able to assemble and arm 2000 of his own slaves from his latifundia to oppose the Emperor Probus during the Crisis of the third century. From the mid-5th century Albenga was the seat of a bishopric. Its early Christian baptistery, perhaps dating to the 5th century, is now ten feet below modern street level. Alluvial deposits washed down by the torrential Centa have gradually buried the southern section of Roman Albingaunum and its port. Albenga has a well-preserved historic center, retaining the Roman plan of its grid planning and surrounded by its ancient walls. It still retains four of its medieval tower houses and other houses built to the Roman plan round a courtyard. Albenga's fortunes declined with the rise of Genoa, but it is again prospering as a center for tourism and agriculture.
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