A District Of Cis-Leithan Austria, forming a part of the Litto-rale, and bordering on the Adriatic, Gorz, and Istria; area, 36 sq. m.; pop. about 132,000, of whom more than one half are Slovens, more than one third Italians, 8 per cent. Germans, and 4½ per cent. Jews.
A City (Anc. Ter-Geste), capital of the' district, and the principal seaport of Austria; beautifully situated at the head of the gulf of Trieste, or N. E. coast of the Adriatic, 70 m. E. N. E. of Venice and 210 m. S. AY. of Vienna; pop. in 1870, including suburbs, 109,324. It consists of the old town, with a fortified castle, the new or Theresa town, and the new Joseph and Francis suburbs, with capacious streets and many squares and promenades. The finest public building is the chamber of commerce, formerly the exchange building. The monuments include the statue of Leopold I., and that by Rosetti of Winckelmann, who was murdered here. The cathedral is remarkable chiefly for walled-in antiquities. The recently opened Protestant church is one of the finest in the city. Trieste is the seat of a bishop, and has a theological seminary and many schools, besides a commercial and naval academy with an observatory, a museum rich in botany, and a public library. The "Adriatic Scientific Society "was established in 1874. The Tergesteum is the building of the Austrian Lloyd's, which company for steamboat navigation and miscellaneous enterprises is one of the largest organizations of the kind in the world. Trieste is Italian in appearance and in language, though much German is spoken. There are Greek and English merchants.
The constant arrival and departure of steamers make the port very lively; but the increase of commerce and population is of comparatively recent origin. In 1758 the population was only 6,000. In 1873 the arrivals of vessels numbered 8,046, chiefly Italian and Austrian, and the departures 8,219, with a respective tonnage of 898,437 and 909,-402. The imports, chiefly coal, grain, iron, and oil, amounted to 140,164,000 florins, and the exports, mainly grain, flour, timber, and staves, to 92,377,000 florins. This was a decline from previous years, due to the competition of Hamburg; and the sanguine expectations of increasing the importance of Trieste in the India trade have been rather damped since the opening of the Suez canal. Its status as a free port is limited by the government monopoly of gunpowder, salt, and tobacco, and by an excise upon wine, spirits, and other articles. A breakwater for protecting the port was begun in 1865, and an abortive attempt was made in 1874 to fill up the malarious part of the canale grande, originally intended to supplement the port and the roads. - Tergeste was originally settled either by the Carnians or Istrians. The earliest historical mention of it as a Roman town dates from 51 B. C. Augustus laid the foundation of its prosperity.
It was under the dominion of the Ostrogoths, and afterward of the Greek emperors, till the period of the Lombard invasion. Subsequently Trieste became independent under its bishop, who bore the title of count, and who gradually sold to the inhabitants the privileges of a free city. Long wars ensued with the patriarchate of Aquileia, which claimed the allegiance of the bishops of Trieste, and in these wars Venice and Genoa also took part. The peace of Turin in 1381 acknowledged Trieste as an independent city, and the next year the citizens voluntarily submitted to the house of Austria. Charles VI. declared it a free city in 1719, and Maria Theresa made it a free port in 1750. It was taken by the French in 1797 and 1805. From 1809 to 1814 it belonged to the French province of Illyria, and subsequently to the Austrian kingdom of that name till 1849, when the so-called kingdom was dissolved. In reward for its fidelity to Austria during the revolutionary period of 1848-9, when the port was blockaded by an Italian squadron, the city and district were invested on Oct. 2, 1849, with the privileges of local self-government; and by the constitution of Dec. 21, 1867, thcy were made a constituent part of the Littoral province.