City (pop., 2001 prelim.: 90,311), Marche region, north-central Italy. A seaport on the Adriatic Sea, Pesaro was destroyed by the Ostrogoths in AD 536. Rebuilt and fortified by the Byzantine general Belisarius as one of the cities of the Pentapolis, it was sold to the Sforza family in 1445. It became part of the Papal States in 1631. It was the birthplace of composer Gioacchino Rossini in 1792. In World War II Pesaro suffered heavily in the Allied advance of 1944, but many of its old buildings escaped with minor damage. It is a seaside resort surrounded by an agricultural area. Its museum of majolica houses the richest collection in Italy.