Vercelli (Anc. Vercellce), a city of Piedmont, Italy, in the province of Novara, on the W. bank of the Sesia, 40 m. N. E. of Turin; pop. in 1872, 27,349. It is the capital of a district of the same name, formerly a province, and is the seat of a bishop. The ramparts have been converted into boulevards. The Milan gate is of fine architecture. The cathedral, of the 16th century, is the most celebrated among many fine churches. It contains the tombs of St. Eusebius and St. Amadeus, and a library with manuscripts of great antiquity. The town has a palace, once the residence of the dukes of Savoy, a hospital with a picturesque cloister, a crypt-like Gothic chapel, a small museum with a botanic garden, a lyceum, a gymnasium, a technological school, an episcopal seminary, and a theatre. The main products of the environs are rice, hemp, flax, and silk, which is manufactured here. - The ancient Vercellse, probably several miles from the present city, was the chief town of the Libici, in Cisalpine Gaul, and became a fortified Roman municipium. The Raudian fields, on which Marius defeated the Cimbri in 101 B. C, are supposed to have been near Vercellae, though some place them near Verona. In the middle ages it was a lordship, and for some time a republic.
In 1427 it was ceded by Milan to Savoy. Spain held it from 1638 to 1659, after which it remained in possession of Savoy till 1704, when the French, to whom it surrendered, razed the fortifications. In 1786 it was retaken.