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Padua was an independent republic from the late 4th century until the 11th century, when it became a part of the Byzantine Empire. In 1137, Padua gave hospitality to emperor Conrad III on his way to and from Rome for his coronation. The House of Este later ruled Ferrara as dukes; they also built a castle in Padua which is now called Castello Estense. After 1204, Paduans largely devoted their energies to growing rice and raising cattle (the latter are celebrated every year with an annual "Rievocazione Storica").