Novellara (Reggiano: Nualera or Nuvalêra) is a town and comune in the province of Reggio Emilia, Emilia-Romagna, Italy and has a population of 13,670. It is 18 kilometres (11 miles) north of Reggio Emilia and has a railway station for the local train going from Reggio to Guastalla.

Comune di Novellara
Piazza Unità d'Italia

Coat of arms
Location of Novellara
Location of Novellara in Italy
Novellara (Emilia-Romagna)
Coordinates: 44°51′N 10°44′E
ProvinceReggio Emilia (RE)
FrazioniSan Bernardino, San Giovanni della Fossa, Santa Maria della Fossa
  MayorElena Carletti (since May 25, 2015) (Centre-Left)
  Total58 km2 (22 sq mi)
24 m (79 ft)
 (31 December 2016)[2]
  Density240/km2 (610/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+1 (CET)
  Summer (DST)UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code
Dialing code0522
Patron saintSan Cassiano
Saint dayMay 4
WebsiteOfficial website


The current name comes from the medieval Nubilaria, when the surrounding terrain was mostly covered by marshes, which favoured the formation of recurring fogs.

The town was the seat of the Gonzaga family from the 13th century: here Guido Gonzaga, in the early 14th century, created an effectively independent lordship, which later evolved into the County of Novellara and Bagnolo, including grossly what is now the communal territory of Novellara and the nearby Bagnolo in Piano.

After the Gonzaga's end, in 1728, the town passed to the Este of the Duchy of Modena, whose history Novellara followed until 1859, when it was annexed to the newly unified Italy.

Main sights

  • The Jesuit Convent
  • Chiesa Collegiata di Santo Stefano
  • The Rocca Gonzaga ("Gonzaga Castle"). This was built by Feltrino Gonzaga starting from 1350, most likely over a pre-existing fortifications from Lombard times.
  • The Casino di Sotto and Casino di Sopra, summer residences of the Gonzagas. The Gonzaga Museum houses a rare 16th century vases collection.
  • The main square (Piazza Unità d'Italia) with the Church of St. Stephen, important work by Lelio Orsi.

In addition to this, Novellara is also home to the second largest gurdwara in Europe. This reflects the presence of a very large Sikh community, living in Novellara and nearby places, where they work mainly in cattle farms and dairies, where Parmigiano Reggiano is made.[3]

As in other towns of the region, (e.g. Bologna), streets are lined with characteristic arcades, intended to offer shade in summer and shelter from rain or snow.

Famous people

Baldassare Castiglione, famous humanist philosopher who was a count in Novellara.

Twin cities


  1. "Superficie di Comuni Province e Regioni italiane al 9 ottobre 2011". Istat. Retrieved 16 March 2019.
  2. Population data from Istat
  3. Mitzman, Dany (25 June 2015). "The Sikhs who Saved Parmesan". BBC Online Magazine. Retrieved 25 June 2015.
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