Region (pop., 2001 prelim.: 4,490,586), northern Italy. It covers an area of 7,090 sq mi (18,364 sq km); its capital is Venice. Bordered by Austria, the Adriatic Sea, and Lake Garda, the northern part is mountainous, while the southern part consists of a fertile plain. Parts were under Roman rule c. 2nd–1st centuries BC (seePadua and Verona) and later were subject to the Lombards. In the Middle Ages, several city-states gained importance, but most subsequently were subject to Venice. The area began to slip from Venetian hold after the French Revolution, and in the early 19th century Veneto came under Austrian rule. It was returned and joined to Italy in the 1860s. Agriculture is an economic mainstay, and industrial works are found around Veneto's major cities.