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Krk (island)

Krk is a Croatian island in the northern Adriatic Sea, located near Rijeka in the Bay of Kvarner and part of the Primorje-Gorski Kotar county.
Krk has for many years been thought the largest Adriatic island, with an area of 405.78 km2
(156.67 sq mi), although recent measurements now give the neighbouring island of Cres an equal surface area. Krk is also the most populous island, with numerous towns and villages totalling 19,286.

Krk was the last Adriatic island to become part of the Venetian Empire. Due to its location, closest to the Uskoks of Senj, it served as a lookout point and the first line of defence against the Uskoks. From that time the ruler was a Venetian noble, but the Small and the Large Councils both had a certain autonomy. The doge controlled the clergy but public documents were written in Glagolitic which was adopted here more than anywhere else. At the beginning of the 16th century the inhabitants of inland Croatia began to settle on Krk in their flight from the Turks, but Krk suffered a decline like all other Venetian property. In 1527 the town had 10,461 inhabitants and in 1527 it had 8,000.

This began with the fall of Venice in 1797 and was briefly (1806–1813) interrupted by Napoleon's Illyrian Provinces. In 1822 the Austrians separated the island from Dalmatia and linked it to Istria, so that Krk, Cres and Lošinj came under direct rule from Vienna. This link contributed to the Croatian National Revival and together with Kastav, the town of Krk played a leading role in the spread of Croatian education and culture.

The Italian Occupation (1918–1920) was brief, and Krk was handed over to Croatia, then in Yugoslavia, by the Treaty of Rapallo, Italy took Krk again in the Second World War (1941–1943), and German occupation followed from 1943–1945. The post-war development of Krk was led by tourism. The building of an airport and then a bridge over to the mainland ensures the future of the development of tourism on this island. In Omišalj there has also been industrial development.

Krk is located rather near the mainland and has been connected to it via a 1,430 m (4,692 ft)
two-arch concrete bridge since 1980, one of the longest concrete bridges in the world. Due to the proximity to the city of Rijeka, Omišalj also hosts the Rijeka International Airport as well as an oil terminal representing a part of the Port of Rijeka and a petrochemical plant. Krk is a popular tourist destination, because of the situation and proximity to Slovenia, southern Germany, Austria, and northern Italy. Since the collapse of the Eastern Bloc, many tourists have appeared from Hungary, Romania, and other former Eastern Bloc countries.

Krk has historically been a center of Croatian culture. Various literature in Glagolitic alphabet was created and in part preserved on Krk (notably the Baška tablet, one of the oldest preserved texts in Croatian). A monastery lies on the small island of Košljun in a bay off the coast of Krk.
Krk belonged to the Republic of Venice during much of the Middle Ages until its dissolution, when its destinies followed those of Dalmatia. It became part of the kingdom SHS, later Yugoslavia, after World War I, in 1920. After that date, the village of Veglia/Krk remained the only predominantly Italian-speaking municipality in Yugoslavia. After WWII, most of the Italians left.

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