CREMA, a town and episcopal see of Lombardy, Italy, in the province of Cremona, 26 m. N.E. by rail from the town of Cremona. Pop. (1901) town, 8027; commune, 9609. It is situated on the right bank of the Serio, 240 ft. above sea-level, in the centre of a rich agricultural district. The cathedral has a fine Lombard Gothic façade of the second half of the 14th century; the campanile belongs to the same period; the rest of the church has been restored in the baroque style. The clock tower opposite dates from the period of Venetian dominion in the 16th and 17th centuries. The castle, which was one of the strongest in Italy, was demolished in 1809. The church of S. Maria, m. E. of the town, was begun in 1490 by Giov. Batt. Battaggio; it is in the form of a Greek cross, with a central dome, and the exterior is a fine specimen of polychrome Lombard work (E. Gussalli in Rassegna d' arte, 1905, p. 17).
The date of the foundation of Crema is uncertain. In the 10th century it appears to have been the principal place of the territory known as Isola Fulcheria. In the 12th century it was allied with Milan and attacked by Cremona, but was taken and sacked by Barbarossa in 1160. It was rebuilt in 1185. It fell under the Visconti in 1338, and joined the Lombard republic in 1447; but was taken by the Venetians in 1449, and, except from 1509 to 1529, remained under their dominion until 1797.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)