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Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V21, Page 626 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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PINEROLO [PIGNEROLI, a city and episcopal see of Piedmont, Italy, in the province of Turin. Pop. (1901), 12,608 (town); 18,039 (commune). It is built on a hill-side just above the valleys of the Chisone and the Lemina, at a height of 1234 ft. above the sea, 24 M. by rail S.W. of Turin. The railway goes on to Torre Pellice; and steam tramways run from Pinerolo to Perosa, and to Cavour and Saluzzo. Till 1696 it was strongly fortified with a citadel on Santa Brigida, a castle on S. Maurizio, and city walls constructed by Thomas I. of Savoy. It has a cathedral (St Donatus), the palace of the princes of Acaia and other buildings of some interest. Cotton, silk, wool and hemp are among the local manufactures. Pinerolo was bestowed on the bishops of Turin by Otto III. in 996; but in 1078 the countess Adelaide made it over to the Benedictine abbey of Santa Maria, in whose possession it remained till 1159. Thomas I. of Savoy captured the castle in 1188, and in 1246 the commune formally recognized the supremacy of Savoy. Passing in 1295 into the hands of Philip, son of Thomas III., Pinerolo became his residence and capital, a distinction which it retained under Amadeus VIII. of Savoy. Francis I. of France obtained possession of the town in his descent into Italy, but Emmanuel Philibert received it back from Henry III. in 1574. A second occupation by the French occurred under Cardinal Richelieu; the French language was imposed on the people, great fortifications were constructed, and the fortress (Pignerol) was used as a state prison for such men as Fouquet, De Caumont and the Man with the Iron Mask (see IRON MASK). Victor Amadeus bombarded the place in 1693, and ultimately compelled Louis XIV. to relinquish his hold on it; but before the withdrawal of the French troops the defences were demolished. In 1748 the town was made a bishop's see. PIN-EYED, a botanical term for flowers which occur in two forms, one of which shows the stigma at the mouth of the corolla. as in the primrose; the term is contrasted with thrum-eyed. PING-PONG, or TABLE-TENNIS, a miniature variety of lawn-tennis played on a table, which may be of any size not less than 51 ft. long by 3 ft. broad. Various attempts were made to adapt lawn-tennis to the house, but the real popularity of the game began when, near the close of the loth century, celluloid balls were introduced, and the game was called ping-pong from the sound of the balls as they were struck by the racket or rebounded from the table. In 1900 the ball was improved and made heavier, and for the next two years ping-pong enjoyed a popularity never before attained by a game in so short a time, not only in Great Britain but in France, the British Colonies and America. Two leagues were formed, the " Table-Tennis Association " and the " Ping-Pong Association," whose laws were practically identical. The regular tournament table is 9 ft. long by 5 ft. broad, and the net is a little less than 7 in. high. The balls, which are of hollow celluloid, are about 4 in. in diameter. The racket has a blade, shaped like a lawn-tennis racket, about 6 in. long and a handle long enough to grasp comfortably, all in one piece. Rackets are made either wholly of wood covered with vellum, cork, sand-paper or rubber, or of light frames covered with vellum or some other material. The table was at first marked out in courts, but is now plain. It should be unpolished and stained. In serving, a player must stand directly behind his end of the table and use an underhand motion only. The ball must clear the net and strike the table anywhere on the other side. The game is then continued until the ball misses the table or fails to pass over the net. Only one service is allowed, except in case of a let. The scoring is the same as in lawn-tennis. See Ping-Pong, by Arnold Parker (London, 1902) ; Table Tennis, by A. Sinclair (London, 1902).
End of Article: PINEROLO

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