Campania (Italian pronunciation: [kamˈpaːnja]) is a region in southern Italy. The region has a population of around 5.8 million people, making it the second-most-populous region of Italy; its total area of 13,590 km² makes it the most densely populated region in the country. Located on the Italian Peninsula, with the Mediterranean Sea to the west, it includes the small Phlegraean Islands and Capri for administration as part of the region.
Located on the Italian Peninsula, Campania was colonised by Ancient Greeks and was part of Magna Græcia. During the Roman era the area maintained a Greco-Roman culture. The capital city of Campania is Naples. Campania is rich in culture, especially in regards to gastronomy, music, architecture, archeological and ancient sites such as Pompeii, Herculaneum, Paestum and Velia. The name of Campania itself is derived from Latin, as the Romans knew the region as Campania felix, which translates into English as "fertile countryside". The rich natural sights of Campania make it highly important in the tourism industry, especially along the Amalfi Coast, Mount Vesuvius and the island of Capri.
The original inhabitants of Campania were three defined groups of the Ancient peoples of Italy, who all spoke the Oscan language which is part of the Italic family; their names were the Osci, the Aurunci and the Ausones. During the 8th century BC, people from Euboea in Greece known as Cumaeans began to establish colonies in the area roughly around the modern day province of Naples. Another Oscan tribe, the Samnites, moved from central Italy down into Campania. Since the Samnites were more warlike than the Campanians, they easily took over the cities of Capua and Cumae, in an area which was one of the most prosperous and fertile in the Italian Peninsula at the time. During the 340s BC, the Samnites were engaged in war with the Roman Republic in a dispute known as the Samnite Wars, with the Romans securing rich pastures of northern Campania during the First Samnite War.
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