Dubrovnik is an old city on the Adriatic Sea coast in the extreme south of Croatia, at the terminal end of the Isthmus of Dubrovnik. It is one of the most prominent tourist resorts, a seaport and the center of the Dubrovnik–Neretva county. Its population was 43,770 in 2001 and 49,728 in 1991. in 2001 the absolute majority of its citizens describe themselves as Croats with 88.39% (2001 census). Dubrovnik is nicknamed "Pearl of the Adriatic".
The city of Dubrovnik was based on maritime trade. In the Middle Ages, as the Republic of Ragusa, it became the only eastern Adriatic city-state to rival Venice. Supported by its wealth and skilled diplomacy, the city achieved a remarkable level of development during the 15th and 16th centuries. Dubrovnik was one of the centers of the development of the Croatian language and literature, home to many notable poets, playwrights, painters, mathematicians, physicists and other scholars.
Dubrovnik was founded by joining two small towns: Laus, a town on a small island off the southern Dalmatian coast, which provided shelter for the Italic refugees from the nearby city of Epidaurum (today Cavtat); and Dubrava, a settlement of Slavic immigrants at the foot of the forested Srd hill.
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