History of Lyon The history of Lyon, known at the time as Lugdunum (meaning "the hill of light" or "the hill of crows") began under the Romans, in the first century B.C. when the city was proclaimed capital of the three Gauls. This official status brought political, economic, military and religious development to the city. This period of pre-eminence lasted 3 centuries but did not survive the downfall of the Roman Empire. A long period of upheaval possessed the city until the church gave it new impetus by declaring Lyon the seat of the Primate of Gaul in the 11th century. From that time, prosperity continued to grow, reaching its peak in the Renaissance. By the end of the 15th century, Lyon was an important center of trade with its fairs and a well-developed banking system which attracted commercial interests from all over Europe. Soon, the social, intellectual and artistic elite settled here. Development continued through the 17th and 18th centuries with the Lyon silk industry dressing the rich the world over and decorating their interiors. The city continued to gain in size and equipped itself with hospitals, public squares and impressive edifices. The French Revolution in 1789 brought a brutal halt to expansion but development was re-vitalized under the Napoleonic empire. Lyon became an industrial city and pursued its urban development with a distinct preference for the Haussman style prevalent at the time. Though the revolt of the Canuts silk workers tarnished the era, Lyon enjoyed an undeniable power which it carried into the 20th century. Urban development continued to expand and change the face of the city. During World War II, Lyon was the center of the French Resistance. The post-war period marked the beginning of the race for modernity with a new challenge, the construction of Europe. Lyon acquired a European dimension through the development of the transportation system, hotel and other tourist facilities, cultural establishments and the creation of the Part-Dieu business quarter in 1960. The 1980's saw a new drive to improve the city's infrastructure. The momentum continues today.turkeyarena.com Important town planning projects have been completed in strategic locations, while maintaining a policy of preservation of local historical cultural assets. In barely a dozen years, Lyon has become a major metropolis where the successes of the past live in harmony with the goals of the future. These different phases of Lyon's history are engraved in the urban landscape.