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Switzerland, officially the Swiss Confederation, is a landlocked Alpine country in Central Europe. The country, which borders Germany to the north, France to the west, Italy to the south, and Austria and Liechtenstein to the east, was historically a confederation, and has been a federation since 1848. Switzerland is a federation of relatively autonomous cantons, some of which have a history of confederacy that goes back more than 700 years, arguably putting them among the world's oldest surviving republics. With an area of 41,285 square kilometers, Switzerland is a relatively small country. Switzerland comprises three basic topographical areas namely the Swiss Alps, the Swiss plateau, and the Jura Mountains. Switzerland has four official languages namely German, French, Italian and Romansh.
Martigny is a small city in Switzerland, located in the canton of Valais at an elevation of 475 meters. Its population is of approximately 15000 inhabitants. Martigny is located at a crossroad between Italy, France and Switzerland, one road linking this town over the Great St. Bernard Pass to Aosta, and the other one, over the col du Trient to Chamonix. In winter, Martigny is appreciated for its nearby ski resorts like Verbier.
In the first century BC, Before Christ present-day Martigny was an oppidum or vicus of a Celtic tribe, the Veragrii. It was then called Octodurus or Octodurum. This was the theatre of the battle of Octodurus in 56 BC between the twelfth legion, commanded by the Roman Servius Galba, and the Veragrii, allied with the Sedunii and the Nantuates. The region joined the Roman Empire. In 47, Emperor Claudius founded Forum Claudii Augusti, later renamed Forum Claudii Vallensium to avoid confusion with another city that was dear to him. Octodurus was the principal town of the area until the displacement of the episcopal see to Sion in the fourth century.
The city is known for its amphitheatre, which was restored in 1978. Cow fights are held in the amphitheatre during early autumn for the Comptoir. The city is also famous for its museum, the Pierre Gianadda Foundation, built on top of Roman ruins. The foundation hosts three painting exhibitions every year, with works by renowned masters. It also has permanent automobile and Gallo-Roman exhibitions. As it is often regarded as among the most beautiful parts of Switzerland, it is one of the most visited places amongst the most die-hard travelers the world over.

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