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The town of Rab was founded as an ancient Roman municipality in the last decades of the 1st century B.C. A deed of gift given by the emperor Octavian Augustus 10 years before the end of tho century endows this already formed urban Liburnian colonial community with walls and towers. It develops successfully, skilfully and fortunately and the evidence for this is given in the time of Emperor Septimus Severus - "Felix Arba" the only town along with Salona in the eastern Adriatic that became the capital of the province of Dalmatia.

It became the early-Christian centre whose citizens in the period between the end of the 3rd and the beginning of the 4th centuries were St. Leo. St. Marin (the founder of the Republic of San Manno) and bishop Titian who is said to have been the third in Dalmatia on the synods of Salona in the beginning of the 6th century.

The town within the Byzantine and the Dalmatian theme was important until the 11th century but it witnessed the biggest prosperity as a free Adriatic commune from the second half of the 11th and during the 12th and the 13th centuries. During this period it acknowledged the alternating authorities of Croatian and Venetian rulers. The Venetian Republic bought it in 1409 along with the entire Dalmatia. ruling this area until its fall under Napoleon's conquers in 1798.

After a brief period of French and the first Austrian predominance, it became a part of tho Austrian province of Dalmatia until the end of the First World War. After a two-year Italian occupation it fell under the governing of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia and after the Second World War to its mother country Croatia within the Yugoslavian Federation. Ever since 1990 it has been a part of the Republic of Croatia.



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