c. 140 million
Italian citizens: c. 60 million
Italian ancestry: c. 80 million
Regions with significant populations
Italy c. 55,000,000
Italian and related dialects;
Christianity: Roman Catholicism (predominantly)
Related ethnic groups
Other Romance peoples, Swiss people, Maltese people, Greek people
Italians (Italian: Italiani [itaˈljaːni]) are a nation and
ethnic group native to Italy, who share a common culture, history,
ancestry and language. Legally, all Italian nationals
are citizens of the Italian Republic, regardless of ancestry or nation
of residence (though the principle of jus sanguinis is used
extensively and arguably more favourably in the Italian nationality
law) and may be distinguished from people of Italian descent without
Italian citizenship and from ethnic
Italians living in territories
adjacent to the
Italian Peninsula without Italian citizenship.
The majority of Italian nationals are native speakers of Standard
Italian, though many
Italians also speak other languages native to
Italy (often colloquially referred to as "Italian
In 2014, in addition to about 55 million
Italy (91% of the
Italian national population), Italian-speaking autonomous groups
are found in neighbouring nations: about half a million are in
Switzerland and a large population is in France, and there are
smaller groups in
Slovenia and Croatia, primarily in
Dalmatia. Because of the wide-ranging diaspora, about 5 million
Italian citizens and nearly 80 million people of full or partial
Italian ancestry live outside their own homeland, most notably in
Europe bordering Italy, the Americas,
Italians have greatly influenced and contributed to diverse fields,
notably the arts and music, science and technology, fashion, cuisine,
sports, jurisprudence, banking and business both abroad and
Italian people are generally known for their localism
(both regionalist and municipalist) and their attention to
clothing and family values.
2.1 Roman era
2.2 The Middle Ages
2.3 Rise of the city-states and the Renaissance
French Revolution and Napoleon
2.5 The Kingdom of Italy
2.6 The Italian Republic
6 Law and justice
7 Science and technology
13.1 Ancient History
13.5 Between the two millenniums
13.6 Modern period
14 Italian diaspora
15 Autochthonous Italian communities outside Italy
16 See also
The term Italian is at least 3,000 years old and has a history that
goes back to pre-Roman Italy. According to one of the more common
explanations, the term Italia, from Latin: Italia, was borrowed
through Greek from the Oscan Víteliú, meaning "land of young cattle"
Latin vitulus "calf", Umbrian vitlo "calf"). The bull was a
symbol of the southern
Italic tribes and was often depicted goring the
Roman wolf as a defiant symbol of free
Italy during the Social War.
Dionysius of Halicarnassus
Dionysius of Halicarnassus states this account
together with the legend that
Italy was named after Italus,
mentioned also by Aristotle and Thucydides.
Main article: Population history of Italy
Further information: History of Italy
Main articles: Ancient peoples of Italy, Etruscan civilization, Magna
Graecia, Cisalpine Gaul, and Ancient Rome
Expansion of the territory known as
Italy from the establishment of
Roman Republic until Diocletian
Etruscan civilization reached its peak about the 7th century BC,
but by 509 BC, when the Romans overthrew their Etruscan monarchs, its
Italy was on the wane. By 350 BC, after a series of wars
Greeks and Etruscans, the Latins, with
Rome as their capital,
gained the ascendancy by 272 BC, and they managed to unite the entire
Etruscan Civilization fresco from the Tomb of the Leopards
This period of unification was followed by one of conquest in the
Mediterranean, beginning with the
First Punic War
First Punic War against Carthage. In
the course of the century-long struggle against Carthage, the Romans
Sardinia and Corsica. Finally, in 146 BC, at the
conclusion of the Third Punic War, with
Carthage completely destroyed
and its inhabitants enslaved,
Rome became the dominant power in the
Mediterranean. From its inception,
Rome was a republican city-state,
but four famous civil conflicts destroyed the republic: Lucius
Cornelius Sulla against
Gaius Marius and his son (88–82 BC), Julius
Pompey (49–45 BC),
Marcus Junius Brutus
Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius
Cassius Longinus against
Mark Antony and Octavian (43 BC), and Mark
Antony against Octavian.
Octavian, the final victor (31 BC), was accorded the title of Augustus
by the Senate and thereby became the first Roman emperor. Augustus
created for the first time an administrative region called Italia with
inhabitants called "Italicus populus", stretching from the
Sicily: for this reason historians like
Emilio Gentile called him
Father of Italians.
Under imperial rule,
Rome undertook many conquests that brought Roman
law, Roman administration, and
Pax Romana to an area extending from
the Atlantic to the Rhine, to the British Isles, to the Iberian
Peninsula and large parts of North Africa, and to the
Middle East as
far as the Euphrates.
After two centuries of successful rule, in the 3rd century AD, Rome
was threatened by internal discord and menaced by Germanic and Asian
invaders, commonly called barbarians (from the
Latin word barbari,
"foreigners"). Emperor Diocletian's administrative division of the
empire into two parts in 285 provided only temporary relief; it became
permanent in 395. In 313, Emperor Constantine accepted Christianity,
and churches thereafter rose throughout the empire. However, he also
moved his capital from
Rome to Constantinople, greatly reducing the
importance of the former. The last Western emperor, Romulus
Augustulus, was deposed in 476 by a Germanic foederati general in
Italy, Odoacer. His defeat marked the end of the western part of the
Roman Empire. During most of the period from the fall of
the Kingdom of
Italy was established in 1861, the peninsula was
divided into several smaller states.
Scipio Africanus, Roman general best known for having defeated
Julius Caesar, member of the Populares, nephew of Gaius Marius,
politician, writer, general, and Dictator, introduced the Julian
Calendar. First of the Twelve Caesars.
Cicero, Roman orator and lawyer who served as consul and exposed the
Second Catilinarian conspiracy. One of the greatest
Lucretius and Seneca.
Augustus, first Roman Emperor. His posthumous adoption by Julius
Caesar elevated his plebeian gens Octavia to patrician status. The
golden age of Rome, known as
Pax Romana due to the relative peace
established in the Mediterranean world, began with his reign.
Ovid, author of the
Metamorphoses and one of three main Augustan poets
Virgil and Horace.
Germanicus, Roman general who avenged the disaster of the Teutoburg
Forest by defeating
Arminius and recovering two legionary eagles lost
in the battle.
Tacitus, one of the major
Latin historians along with
Titus, member of the
Flavian dynasty who captured Jerusalem and
completed the Colosseum.
Trajan, Roman emperor who presided over the greatest expansion in
Roman history. A man of Umbrian origins, he was born in Italica, a
colony of Italian settlers in Hispania.
Marcus Aurelius, last of the five good emperors and philosopher. His
death marked the end of the Pax Romana.
The Middle Ages
Italy in the Middle Ages
Odoacer ruled well for 13 years after gaining control of
Italy in 476.
Then he was attacked and defeated by Theodoric, the king of another
Germanic tribe, the Ostrogoths. Theodoric and
Odoacer ruled jointly
until 493, when Theodoric murdered Odoacer. Theodoric continued to
Italy with an army of
Ostrogoths and a government that was mostly
Italian. After the death of Theodoric in 526, the kingdom began to
grow weak. By 553, emperor
Justinian I expelled the Ostrogoths. The
Roman Empire was mostly united again, even if at the price of the
total destruction of the Italian peninsula (Rome—under
first "one million inhabitants" city in the world—was reduced to a
small village of just one thousand inhabitants). But
Byzantine rule in
Italy collapsed again by 572 as a result of
invasions by another Germanic tribe, the Lombards, though some areas
in the extreme south remained under Byzantine rule as the "theme of
During the 5th and 6th centuries, the popes increased their influence
in both religious and political matters in Italy. It was usually the
popes who led attempts to protect
Italy from invasion or to soften
foreign rule. For about 200 years the popes opposed attempts by the
Lombards, who had captured most of Italy, to take over
Rome as well.
The popes finally defeated the
Lombards with the aid of two Frankish
Pepin the Short
Pepin the Short and Charlemagne. Using land won for them by
Pepin in 756, the popes established political rule in what were called
Papal States in central Italy.
Lombards remained a threat to papal power, however, until they
were crushed by
Charlemagne in 774.
Charlemagne added the Kingdom of
Lombards to his vast realm. In recognition of Charlemagne's power,
and to cement the church's alliance with him,
Charlemagne was crowned
emperor of the Romans by
Pope Leo III in 800. After Charlemagne's
death in 814, his son
Louis the Pious
Louis the Pious succeeded him. Louis divided the
empire among his sons, who fought each other for territory. Such
battles continued until Otto the Great, the king of Germany, was
crowned emperor in 962. This marked the beginning of what later was
called the Holy Roman Empire.
Rise of the city-states and the Renaissance
Main article: Italian city-states
From the 11th century on, Italian cities began to grow rapidly in
independence and importance. They became centres of political life,
banking, and foreign trade. Some became wealthy, and many, including
Florence, Rome, Genoa, Milan, Pisa,
Siena and Venice, grew into nearly
independent city-states. Each had its own foreign policy and political
life. They all resisted the efforts of noblemen and emperors to
During the 14th and 15th centuries, some
Italian city-states ranked
among the most important powers of Europe. Venice, in particular, had
become a major maritime power, and the city-states as a group acted as
a conduit for goods from the Byzantine and Islamic empires. In this
capacity, they provided great impetus to the developing Renaissance,
Florence in the 14th century, and led to an unparalleled
flourishing of the arts, literature, music, and science.
However, the city-states were often troubled by violent disagreements
among their citizens. The most famous division was between the Guelphs
and Ghibellines. The Guelphs supported supreme rule by the pope, and
the Ghibellines favored the emperor. City-states often took sides and
waged war against each other. During the Renaissance,
Italy became an
even more attractive prize to foreign conquerors. After some
city-states asked for outside help in settling disputes with their
neighbors, King Charles VIII of
France marched into
Italy in 1494.
Charles soon withdrew, but he had shown that the Italian peninsula
could be conquered because they were not united.
After the Italian Wars,
Spain emerged as the dominant force in the
region. Venice, Milan, and other city-states retained at least some of
their former greatness during this period, as did Savoy-Piedmont,
protected by the
Alps and well defended by its vigorous rulers.
Marco Polo, Italian merchant traveler who introduced Europeans to
Central Asia and China
Christopher Columbus, early European explorer of the New World.
Amerigo Vespucci, geographer and traveler from whose name the word
America is derived.
French Revolution and Napoleon
Main article: Napoleonic Kingdom of Italy
Laura Bassi, the first chairwoman of a university in a scientific
field of studies.
French Revolution and
Italy more deeply than
they affected any other outside country of Europe. The French
Revolution began in 1789 and immediately found supporters among the
Italian people. The local Italian rulers, sensing danger in their own
country, drew closer to the European kings who opposed France. After
the French king was overthrown and
France became a republic, secret
clubs favouring an Italian republic were formed throughout Italy. The
armies of the French Republic began to move across Europe. In 1796,
Napoleon Bonaparte led a French army into northern
Italy and drove out
the Austrian rulers. Once again,
Italy was the scene of battle between
the Habsburgs and the French. Wherever
France conquered, Italian
republics were set up, with constitutions and legal reforms. Napoleon
made himself emperor in 1804, and part of northern and central Italy
was unified under the name of the Kingdom of Italy, with
king. The rest of northern and central
Italy was annexed by France.
Sicily and the island of Sardinia, which had been ceded to the
Savoy in 1720 and had been under their rule ever since,
remained free of French control.
French domination lasted less than 20 years, and it differed from
previous foreign control of the Italian peninsula. In spite of heavy
taxation and frequent harshness, the French introduced representative
assemblies and new laws that were the same for all parts of the
country. For the first time since the days of ancient Rome, Italians
of different regions used the same money and served in the same army.
Italians began to see the possibility of a united
Italy free of
The Kingdom of Italy
Main article: Kingdom of Italy
The Expedition of the Thousand.
After the Battle of Waterloo, the reaction set in with the Congress of
Vienna allowed the restoration of many of the old rulers and systems
under Austrian domination. The concept of nationalism continued
strong, however, and sporadic outbreaks led by such inveterate
Giuseppe Mazzini occurred in several parts of the
peninsula down to 1848–49. This Risorgimento movement was brought to
a successful conclusion under the able guidance of Camillo Benso,
conte di Cavour, prime minister of Piedmont.
Cavour managed to unite most of
Italy under the headship of Victor
Emmanuel II of the house of Savoy, and on 17 March 1861, the Kingdom
Italy was proclaimed with
Victor Emmanuel II
Victor Emmanuel II as king. Giuseppe
Garibaldi, the popular republican hero of Italy, contributed much to
this achievement and to the subsequent incorporation of the Papal
States under the Italian monarch. Italian troops occupied
1870, and in July 1871, this formally became the capital of the
Pope Pius IX, a longtime rival of Italian kings, considered
himself a "prisoner" of the Vatican and refused to cooperate with the
royal administration. Only in 1929 the Roman
Pope accepted the unified
Rome as capital.
In the decades following unification,
Italy started to create colonies
in Africa, and under Benito Mussolini's fascism conquered Ethiopia
founding in 1936 the Italian Empire.
World War I
World War I completed the process
of Italian unification, with the annexation of Trieste, Istria,
Trentino-Alto Adige and Zara. The
Italians grew to 45 millions in 1940
and the land, whose economy had been until that time based upon
agriculture, started its industrial development, mainly in northern
World War II
World War II soon destroyed
Italy and its colonial power.
The Italian Republic
Main article: History of the Italian Republic
Between 1945 and 1948, the outlines of a new
Italy began to appear.
Victor Emmanuel III
Victor Emmanuel III gave up the throne on 9 May 1946, and his son,
Umberto II, became king. On 2 June
Italy held its first free election
after 20 years of Fascist rule (the so-called Ventennio). Italians
chose a republic to replace the monarchy, which had been closely
associated with Fascism. They elected a Constituent Assembly to
prepare a new democratic constitution. The Assembly approved the
constitution in 1947, which came into force since 1 January 1948.
Main article: Culture of Italy
The Pantheon and the Fontana del Pantheon. Roman relics and Roman
culture are important national symbols in Italy.
Italian women dance the tarantella, 1846
Magna Graecia period to the 17th century, the inhabitants of
the Italian peninsula were at the forefront of Western culture, being
the fulcrum and origin of Magna Graecia, Ancient Rome, the Roman
Catholic Church, Humanism, the Renaissance, Baroque, the
Counter-Reformation and Neoclassicism.
Italy also became a seat of great formal learning in 1088 with the
establishment of the University of Bologna, the first university in
the Western World. Many other Italian universities soon followed.
For example, the Schola Medica Salernitana, in southern Italy, was the
first medical school in Europe. These great centres of learning
presaged the Rinascimento: the European
Renaissance began in
was fueled throughout
Europe by Italian painters, sculptors,
architects, scientists, literature masters and music composers. Italy
continued its leading cultural role through the
Baroque period and
into the Romantic period, when its dominance in painting and sculpture
diminished but the
Italians re-established a strong presence in music.
Italian explorers and navigators in the 15th and 16th centuries left a
perennial mark on human history with the modern "discovery of
America", due to Christopher Columbus. In addition, the name of the
American continents derives from the geographer Amerigo Vespucci's
first name. Also noted, is explorer
Marco Polo who travelled
extensively throughout the eastern world recording his travels.
Due to comparatively late national unification, and the historical
autonomy of the regions that comprise the Italian peninsula, many
traditions and customs of the
Italians can be identified by their
regions of origin. Despite the political and social isolation of these
regions, Italy's contributions to the cultural and historical heritage
of the Western world remain immense. Famous elements of Italian
culture are its opera and music, its iconic gastronomy and food, which
are commonly regarded as amongst the most popular in the world,
its cinema (with filmmakers such as Federico Fellini, Michelangelo
Antonioni, Mario Monicelli, Sergio Leone, Alberto Sordi, etc.), its
collections of priceless works of art and its fashion (
Florence are regarded as some of the few fashion capitals of the
Main article: Italian philosophy
Giordano Bruno, one of the major figures of the early western world as
well as one of the least understood.
Over the ages
Italian literature had a vast influence on Western
philosophy, beginning with the
Greeks and Romans, and going onto
Renaissance, The Enlightenment and modern philosophy. Italian Medieval
philosophy was mainly Christian, and included several important
philosophers and theologians such as St Thomas Aquinas. Aquinas was
the student of Albert the Great, a brilliant Dominican
experimentalist, much like the Franciscan,
Roger Bacon of
the 13th century. Aquinas reintroduced Aristotelian philosophy to
Christianity. He believed that there was no contradiction between
faith and secular reason. He believed that
Aristotle had achieved the
pinnacle in the human striving for truth and thus adopted Aristotle's
philosophy as a framework in constructing his theological and
philosophical outlook. He was a professor at the prestigious
University of Paris.
Niccolò Machiavelli, the founder of modern political science and
Italy was also affected by the Enlightenment, a movement which was a
consequence of the
Renaissance and changed the road of Italian
philosophy. Followers of the group often met to discuss in private
salons and coffeehouses, notably in the cities of Milan,
Venice. Cities with important universities such as Padua,
Naples, however, also remained great centres of scholarship and the
intellect, with several philosophers such as Giambattista Vico
(1668–1744) (who is widely regarded as being the founder of modern
Italian philosophy) and Antonio Genovesi. Italian society also
dramatically changed during the Enlightenment, with rulers such as
Leopold II of Tuscany
Leopold II of Tuscany abolishing the death penalty. The church's power
was significantly reduced, and it was a period of great thought and
invention, with scientists such as
Alessandro Volta and Luigi Galvani
discovering new things and greatly contributing to Western
Cesare Beccaria was also one of the greatest Italian
Enlightenment writers and now considered one of the fathers of
classical criminal theory as well as modern penology. Beccaria is
famous for his masterpiece
On Crimes and Punishments
On Crimes and Punishments (1764), a
treatise (later translated into 22 languages) that served as one of
the earliest prominent condemnations of torture and the death penalty
and thus a landmark work in anti-death penalty philosophy.
Some of the most prominent philosophies and ideologies in
the late 19th and 20th centuries include anarchism, communism,
socialism, futurism, fascism, and Christian democracy. Both futurism
and fascism (in its original form, now often distinguished as Italian
fascism) were developed in
Italy at this time. From the 1920s to the
Fascism was the official philosophy and ideology of the
Italian government led by Benito Mussolini.
Giovanni Gentile was one
of the most significant 20th-century Idealist/Fascist philosophers.
Meanwhile, anarchism, communism, and socialism, though not originating
in Italy, took significant hold in
Italy during the early 20th
century, with the country producing numerous significant Italian
anarchists, socialists, and communists. In addition, anarcho-communism
first fully formed into its modern strain within the Italian section
of the First International.
Antonio Gramsci remains an important
Marxist and communist theory, credited with
creating the theory of cultural hegemony.
Main article: Italian literature
Italian literature may be unearthed back to the Middle Ages, with the
most significant poets of the period being Dante Alighieri, Petrarch,
and Giovanni Boccaccio. During the Renaissance, humanists such as
Coluccio Salutati and
Niccolò Machiavelli were great
collectors of antique manuscripts. Many worked for the organized
Church and were in holy orders (like Petrarch), while others were
lawyers and chancellors of Italian cities, like Petrarch's disciple,
Salutati, the Chancellor of Florence, and thus had access to book
copying workshops. One of the most remarkable poets of the early 19
and 20th century writers was Giacomo Leopardi, who is widely
acknowledged to be one of the most radical and challenging thinkers of
the 19th century. Italo Svevo, the author of La coscienza di
Zeno (1923), and
Luigi Pirandello (winner of the 1934 Nobel Prize in
Literature), who explored the shifting nature of reality in his prose
fiction and such plays as Sei personaggi in cerca d'autore (Six
Characters in Search of an Author, 1921).
Federigo Tozzi and Giuseppe
Ungaretti were well-known novelists, critically appreciated only in
recent years, and regarded one of the forerunners of existentialism in
the European novel.
Law and justice
Since the Roman Empire, most western contributions to Western legal
culture was the emergence of a class of Roman jurists. During the
Middle Ages, St. Thomas Aquinas, the most influential western scholar
of the period, integrated the theory of natural law with the notion of
an eternal and biblical law. During the Renaissance, Prof.
Alberico Gentili, the founder of the science of international law,
authored the first treatise on public international law and separated
secular law from canon law and Roman Catholic theology.
Enlightenment's greatest legal theorists, Cesare Beccaria,
Giambattista Vico and Francesco Mario Pagano, are well remembered for
their legal works, particularly on criminal law. Francesco Carrara, an
advocate of abolition of the death penalty, was one of the foremost
European criminal lawyers of the 19th century. During the last
Italians have been recognised as the prominent
Lorenzo de Medici
Francesco Mario Pagano
Enrico De Nicola
Science and technology
Main articles: Science and technology in
Italy and List of Italian
Italians have been the central figures of countless inventions and
discoveries and they made many predominant contributions to various
fields. During the Renaissance, Italian polymaths such as Leonardo da
Michelangelo (1475–1564) and Leon Battista
Alberti (1404–72) made important contributions to a variety of
fields, including biology, architecture, and engineering. Galileo
Galilei (1564–1642), a physicist, mathematician and astronomer,
played a major role in the Scientific Revolution. His achievements
include the invention of the thermometer and key improvements to the
telescope and consequent astronomical observations, and ultimately the
triumph of Copernicanism over the Ptolemaic model. Other astronomers
Giovanni Domenico Cassini
Giovanni Domenico Cassini (1625–1712) and Giovanni
Schiaparelli (1835–1910) made many important discoveries about the
Solar System. Physicist
Enrico Fermi (1901–54), a Nobel prize
laureate, led the team in Chicago that built the first nuclear reactor
and is also noted for his many other contributions to physics,
including the co-development of the quantum theory. He and a number of
Italian physicists were forced to leave
Italy in the 1930s by Fascist
laws against Jews, including
Emilio G. Segrè
Emilio G. Segrè (1905–89) (who
discovered the elements technetium and astatine, and the
Bruno Rossi (1905–93), a pioneer in Cosmic Rays
and X-ray astronomy. Other prominent physicists and scientists
Amedeo Avogadro (most noted for his contributions to
molecular theory, in particular
Avogadro's law and the Avogadro
Evangelista Torricelli (inventor of the barometer),
Alessandro Volta (inventor of the electric battery), Guglielmo Marconi
(inventor of radio),
Antonio Meucci (known for developing a
voice-communication apparatus, often credited as the inventor of the
first telephone before even Alexander Graham Bell), Galileo
Ferraris (one of the pioneers of AC power system, invented the first
Ettore Majorana (who discovered the Majorana
Carlo Rubbia (1984 Nobel Prize in Physics for work
leading to the discovery of the
W and Z particles
W and Z particles at CERN).
Francesco Redi was the first to challenge the theory of
spontaneous generation by demonstrating that maggots come from eggs of
flies and he described 180 parasites in detail; Marcello Malpighi
founded microscopic anatomy;
Lazzaro Spallanzani conducted important
research in bodily functions, animal reproduction, and cellular
theory; Camillo Golgi, whose many achievements include the discovery
of the Golgi complex, paved the way to the acceptance of the Neuron
Rita Levi-Montalcini discovered the nerve growth factor
(awarded 1986 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine); Angelo Ruffini
first described the
Ruffini endings and was known for his work in
histology and embryology;
Filippo Pacini discovered the Pacinian
corpuscles and was the first to isolate the cholera bacillus Vibrio
cholerae in 1854, before Robert Koch's more widely accepted
discoveries 30 years later. In chemistry,
Giulio Natta received the
Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1963 for his work on high polymers.
Giuseppe Occhialini received the
Wolf Prize in Physics
Wolf Prize in Physics for the
discovery of the pion or pi-meson decay in 1947.
Leonardo da Vinci, a father of paleontology and architecture, has been
the most influential polymath
Galileo Galilei, the father of science and modern physics, one of the
key figures in astronomy, pioneered the thermometer and made
significant works in other fields of science
Elena Cornaro Piscopia, the first woman to obtain a doctoral degree.
Evangelista Torricelli, the inventor of barometer, made various
advances in optics and work on the method of indivisibles
Luigi Galvani, one of the pioneers of bioelectricity, discovered that
the muscles of dead frogs legs twitched when struck by an electrical
Alessandro Volta, the inventor of the electrical battery and discover
of methane, did substantial work with electric currents
Francesco Redi, the father of modern parasitology, founded the
experimental biology and demonstrated that maggots come from eggs of
Marcello Malpighi, called father of microscopical anatomy, histology,
physiology and embryology, was the first person to see capillaries in
animals and discovered the link between arteries and veins
Lazzaro Spallanzani was the first to perform in vitro fertilization,
with frogs, and an artificial insemination, using a dog and made
various substantial contributions to the experimental study of bodily
functions, animal reproduction, and animal echolocation.
Amedeo Avogadro, made important works to molecular theory and invented
Avogadro's law and Avogadro constant
Pacinotti, inventor of the dynamo
Enrico Fermi, the inventor of the
Chicago Pile-1 and one of the
builders of the Atomic Bomb
Emilio Gino Segrè, one of the discoverers of technetium, astatine,
antiproton and a key figure in the creation of the Nuclear Weapon
Antonio Meucci, inventor of the first telephone
Guglielmo Marconi, inventor of the radio
Bruno Rossi, pioneered
X-ray astronomy and space plasma physics and
highly contributed to particle physics and cosmic rays
Rita Levi-Montalcini, the oldest Nobel laureate ever to have lived,
discovered the Nerve growth factor
Ettore Majorana, the discoverer of the Majorana fermions
During the Middle Ages, Leonardo Fibonacci, the greatest Western
mathematician of the Middle Ages, introduced the Hindu–Arabic
numeral system to the Western World and he also introduced the
sequence of Fibonacci numbers which he used as an example in Liber
Abaci. Gerolamo Cardano, introduced the probability and established
the binomial coefficients and binomial theorem and he also invented
some essential onjects. During the Renaissance, Luca Pacioli
established accounting to the world, published the first work on
Double-entry bookkeeping system.
Galileo Galilei made several
significant advances in mathematics. Bonaventura Cavalieri's works
anticipated integral calculus and popularized logarithms in Italy.
Jacopo Riccati, who was also a jurist, invented the Riccati equation.
Maria Gaetana Agnesi, the first woman to write a mathematics handbook,
become the first woman Mathematics Professor at a University. Gian
Francesco Malfatti, posed the problem of carving three circular
columns out of a triangular block of marble, using as much of the
marble as possible, and conjectured that three mutually-tangent
circles inscribed within the triangle would provide the optimal
solution, which are now known as Malfatti circles. Joseph-Louis
Lagrange, who was one of the most influential mathematician of his
time, made essential works to analysis, number theory, and both
classical and celestial mechanics.
Gregorio Ricci-Curbastro invented
Tensor calculus and made meaningful works on algebra,
infinitesimal analysis, and papers on the theory of real numbers.
Giuseppe Peano, founded the mathematical logic, the set theory, and
John Venn drew the first Venn diagram. Gregorio
Ricci-Curbastro is well known for his invention on absolute
differential calculus (tensor calculus), further developed by Tullio
Levi-Civita, and its applications to the theory of relativity.
Beniamino Segre is one of the main contributor of algebraic geometry
and one of the founders of finite geometry.
Paolo Ruffini is credited
for his innovative work in mathematics, creating "Ruffini's rule" and
co-creating the Abel–Ruffini theorem. Ennio de Giorgi, a Wolf Prize
in Mathematics recipient in 1990, solved
Bernstein's problem about
minimal surfaces and the 19th Hilbert problem on the regularity of
solutions of Elliptic partial differential equations.
Jacopo Francesco Riccati
Maria Gaetana Agnesi
Gian Francesco Malfatti
Main article: Architecture of Italy
Italy is home to the greatest number of
UNESCO World Heritage Sites
(51) to date and it is home to half the world's great art
Italians are known for their significant architectural
achievements, such as the construction of arches, domes and
similar structures during ancient Rome, the founding of the
Renaissance architectural movement in the late-14th to 16th centuries,
and being the homeland of Palladianism, a style of construction which
inspired movements such as that of Neoclassical architecture, and
influenced the designs which noblemen built their country houses all
over the world, notably in the UK,
Australia and the US during the
late 17th to early 20th centuries. Several of the finest works in
Western architecture, such as the Colosseum, the
Milan Cathedral and
Florence cathedral, the Leaning Tower of
Pisa and the building designs
Venice are found in Italy.
Italian architecture has also widely influenced the architecture of
the world. British architect Inigo Jones, inspired by the designs of
Italian buildings and cities, brought back the ideas of Italian
Renaissance architecture to 17th-century England, being inspired by
Andrea Palladio. Additionally, Italianate architecture, popular
abroad since the 19th century, was used to describe foreign
architecture which was built in an Italian style, especially modelled
Leon Battista Alberti
Pietro da Cortona
Gian Lorenzo Bernini
Giovanni Battista Piranesi
Pier Luigi Nervi
Giancarlo De Carlo
Pier Carlo Bontempi
Main article: Music of Italy
History's most successful tenors,
Enrico Caruso (above) and Luciano
Bartolomeo Cristofori, the inventor of the piano
From folk music to classical, music has always played an important
role in Italian culture. Instruments associated with classical music,
including the piano and violin, were invented in Italy, and many of
the prevailing classical music forms, such as the symphony, concerto,
and sonata, can trace their roots back to innovations of 16th- and
17th-century Italian music.
Italians invented many of the musical
instruments, including the piano and violin.
Italians composers include the Giovanni Pierluigi da
Palestrina, Claudio Monteverdi, the
Baroque composers Scarlatti,
Corelli and Vivaldi, the Classical composers Paganini and Rossini, and
the Romantic composers
Verdi and Puccini, whose operas, including La
bohème, Tosca, Madama Butterfly, and Turandot, are among the most
frequently worldwide performed in the standard repertoire.
Modern Italian composers such as Berio and Nono proved significant in
the development of experimental and electronic music. While the
classical music tradition still holds strong in Italy, as evidenced by
the fame of its innumerable opera houses, such as
La Scala of Milan
and San Carlo of Naples, and performers such as the pianist Maurizio
Pollini and the late tenor Luciano Pavarotti,
Italians have been no
less appreciative of their thriving contemporary music scene.
Italians are amply known as the mothers of opera. Italian opera
was believed to have been founded in the early 17th century, in
Italian cities such as
Mantua and Venice. Later, works and pieces
composed by native Italian composers of the 19th and early 20th
centuries, such as Rossini, Bellini, Donizetti,
Verdi and Puccini, are
among the most famous operas ever written and today are performed in
opera houses across the world.
La Scala operahouse in
Milan is also
renowned as one of the best in the world. Famous
Italian opera singers
Enrico Caruso and Alessandro Bonci.
Introduced in the early 1920s, jazz took a particularly strong
foothold on Italians, and remained popular despite the xenophobic
cultural policies of the Fascist regime. Today, the most notable
centres of jazz music in
Italy include Milan, Rome, and Sicily. Later,
Italy was at the forefront of the progressive rock movement of the
1970s, with bands like PFM and Goblin.
Italy was also an important
country in the development of disco and electronic music, with Italo
disco, known for its futuristic sound and prominent usage of
synthesizers and drum machines, being one of the earliest electronic
dance genres, as well as European forms of disco aside from Euro disco
(which later went on to influence several genres such as
Producers and songwriters such as Giorgio Moroder, who won three
Academy Awards for his music, were highly influential in the
development of EDM (electronic dance music). Today, Italian pop music
is represented annually with the Sanremo Music Festival, which served
as inspiration for the
Eurovision song contest, and the Festival of
Two Worlds in Spoleto. Singers such as pop diva Mina, classical
crossover artist Andrea Bocelli,
Grammy winner Laura Pausini, and
Eros Ramazzotti have attained international
Main articles: Cinema of
Italy and List of Italian actors
Some of the most influential people in cinema.
Since the development of the
Italian film industry in the early 1900s,
Italian filmmakers and performers have, at times, experienced both
domestic and international success, and have influenced film movements
throughout the world.
Following the Fascist era, characterized by the Telefoni Bianchi
genre, they got international critical acclaim through the Neorealist
genre, and starting from the 1960s through the Commedia all'italiana
genre as well as through a number of auteurs such as Federico Fellini,
Michelangelo Antonioni and Pier Paolo Pasolini.
Since the early 1960s they also popularized a large number of genres
and subgenres, such as Peplum, Macaroni Combat, Giallo, Spaghetti
Poliziotteschi and Commedia sexy
Italy has won 14 Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language
Film, the most of any country, and 12 Palme d'Or, the second-most of
Main article: Sport in Italy
Motorcycle racer Giacomo Agostini
Gianluigi Buffon, the highest-priced goalkeeper and the most capped
player for the Italian national team
Italians have a long tradition in sport. In numerous sports, both
individual and team,
Italy has been very successful.
Association football is the most popular sport in Italy.
Italy is one
of the most successful national teams in association football having
four FIFA World Cups, one UEFA European Championship and one Olympic
tournament. Amongst the players who won the
FIFA World Cup
FIFA World Cup there are
Silvio Piola (to date the highest goalscorer in
Italian first league history), Dino Zoff, Paolo Rossi, Marco Tardelli,
Bruno Conti, Gianluigi Buffon, Fabio Cannavaro, Alessandro Del Piero,
Andrea Pirlo and Francesco Totti. Amongst those who did not win the
World Cup but laureated as European champions are Gianni Rivera, Luigi
Riva (to date Italy's leading scorer of all time), Sandro Salvadore,
Pietro Anastasi and Giacinto Facchetti. Other
prominent players who achieved success at club level are Giampiero
Boniperti, Romeo Benetti, Roberto Boninsegna, Roberto Bettega, Roberto
Baggio and Paolo Maldini. Of the above-mentioned, the goalkeeper Dino
Zoff, who served in the National team from 1968 to 1983, is to date
the only Italian player to have won both the European championship (in
1968) and the
FIFA World Cup
FIFA World Cup (in 1982), apart from being the oldest
winner ever of the World Cup. At club level, to date
Italy has won a
total of 12 European Cup / Champions' Leagues, 9 UEFA Cups / UEFA
Europa League and 7 UEFA Cup Winners' Cup.
Motorcycle racers such as
Giacomo Agostini and
Valentino Rossi are
recognized as some of the greatest sportstars of all time. Federica
Pellegrini, one of the few female swimmers to have set world records
in more than one event has been one of the world's most successful
swimmers. Italian athletes have won 549 medals at the Summer Olympic
Games, and another 114 medals at the Winter Olympic Games. Jessica
Rossi scored a
Shooting sport world record of 75 in the qualification
and a world record of 99. As for Olympic games, 663
medals, particularly in Swordsmanship, which makes them the 6th most
successful ethnic group in Olympic history. There are more than
2,000,000 Italian skiers in the world, most of them in the north and
in the centre.[clarification needed] Italian skiers received good
results in the Winter Olympic Games, World Cup, and World
Italians are the second of the most who have won the World Cycling
Championship more than any other country after Belgium. The Giro
d'Italia is a world-famous long-distance cycling race held every May,
and constitutes one of the three Grand Tours, along with the Tour de
France and the Vuelta a España, each of which last approximately
Tennis has a significant following near courts and on
television. Italian professional tennis players are almost always in
the top 100 world ranking of male and female players. Beach tennis
with paddle racquet was invented by Italians, and is practised by many
people across the country.
Volleyball is played by a lot of amateur
players and professional players compete in the Italian Volleyball
League, regarded as the best and most difficult volleyball league in
the world. The male and female national teams are often in the top 4
ranking of teams in the world. Athletics is a popular sport for
Italians, as the Italian World and Olympic champions are very
celebrated people. In wrestling, one of the most remarkable wrestlers
is Bruno Sammartino, who held the record of the WWWF (World)
Heavyweight Championship for over 11 years across two reigns, the
first of which is the longest single reign in the promotion's history.
Rugby union was imported from
France in the 1910s and has been
regularly played since the 1920s; the National team has progressed
slowly but significantly during the decades and thanks to the good
results achieved in the second half of the 1990s, when they managed to
beat historical teams like Scotland, Ireland and eventually France,
Italy gained the admission to the Five
Nation Championship, later
renamed Six Nations;
Italy has taken part to the
Rugby World Cup
Rugby World Cup since
its inauguration in 1987 and never missed an edition though to date
has never gone past the group stage.
Further information: Genetic history of
Europe and Genetic history of
Due to historic demographic shifts in the Italian peninsula throughout
Italians have mixed origins of other European groups.
This includes pre-Indo-European (such as the
Etruscans and the
Ligures) and pre-Roman peoples (such as the Celts), as well as
Italic people (such as the Latino-Faliscans, the Osco-Umbrians, the
Sicels, and the Veneti), as well significantly from non-
Italians originate from these two primary elements, and all share
Latin heritage and history.
Italians are a Southwestern European population, with origins
predominantly from Southern and Western Europe.
The earliest modern humans inhabiting
Italy are believed to have been
Paleolithic peoples that may have arrived in the
Italian Peninsula as
early as 35,000 to 40,000 years ago.
Italy is believed to have been a
major Ice-age refuge from which
Paleolithic humans later colonized
Europe. Migrations from what is now
Italy during the
Mesolithic link modern
Italians to the populations of much of Western
Europe and particularly the
British Isles and Atlantic Europe.
Neolithic colonization of
Western Asia and the Middle
East beginning around 10,000 years ago reached Italy, as most of the
rest of the continent although, according to the demic diffusion
model, its impact was most in the southern and eastern regions of the
Starting in the 4th millennium BC as well as in the Bronze Age, the
first wave of migrations into
Italy of speakers of Indo-European
languages occurred, with the appearance of the Remedello, the
Rinaldone and the Gaudo cultures. These were later (from the 18th
century BC) followed by others that can be identified as Italo-Celts,
with the appearance of the Proto-Celtic Canegrate culture and
Proto-Italic Terramare culture, both deriving from the
Italo-Celtic Tumulus and Unetice cultures. Later Celtic La Tène
and Hallstatt cultures have been documented in
Italy as far south as
Umbria and Latium, inhabited by the
Rutuli and the Umbri,
closely related to the Ligures. Italics occupied Southern and
Central Italy: the "West Italic" group (including the Latins) were the
first wave. They had cremation burials and possessed advanced
metallurgical techniques. Major tribes included:
Oenotrians and Italii in Calabria, Ausones,
Aurunci and Opici
Campania and perhaps
Sicels in Sicily. They were followed, and
largely displaced by East Italic (Osco-Umbrians) group.
Fresco of dancing Peucetian women in the
Tomb of the Dancers
Tomb of the Dancers in Ruvo
di Puglia, 4th–5th century BC
By the beginning of the Iron Age the
Etruscans emerged as the dominant
civilization on the Italian peninsula. The Etruscans, whose primary
home was in
Etruria (modern Tuscany), inhabited a large part of
central and northern
Italy extending as far north as the
Po Valley and
as far south as Capua. Traditionally the
Etruscans were said to
have migrated to
Italy from Anatolia, but modern archaeological and
genetic research suggests descent from the indigenous Villanovan
culture of Italy.
Ligures are said to have been one of the oldest populations in
Italy and Western Europe, possibly of Pre-Indo-European
origin. According to
Strabo they were not Celts, but later became
influenced by the Celtic culture of their neighbours, and thus are
sometimes referred to as Celticized Ligurians or Celto-Ligurians.
Their language had affinities with both Italic (
Latin and the
Osco-Umbrian languages) and Celtic (Gaulish). They primarily inhabited
the regions of Liguria, Piedmont, northern Tuscany, western Lombardy,
Emilia-Romagna and northern Sardinia, but are believed to have
once occupied an even larger portion of ancient
Italy as far south as
Sicily. They were also settled in
Corsica and in the Provence
region along the southern coast of modern France.
During the Iron Age, prior to Roman rule, the peoples living in the
area of modern
Italy and the islands were:
Etruscans (Camunni, Lepontii, Raeti);
Ligures (Apuani, Bagienni, Briniates, Corsi, Friniates, Garuli,
Hercates, Ilvates, Insubres, Orobii, Laevi, Lapicini, Marici,
Italics (Latins, Falisci, Marsi, Umbri, Volsci, Marrucini, Osci,
Aurunci, Ausones, Campanians, Paeligni, Sabines, Bruttii, Frentani,
Lucani, Samnites, Pentri, Caraceni, Caudini, Hirpini, Aequi,
Fidenates, Hernici, Picentes, Vestini, Morgeti, Sicels, Veneti);
Gauls (Ausones, Boii, Carni, Cenomani, Graioceli, Lingones, Segusini,
Senones, Salassi, Vertamocorii);
Greeks of Magna Graecia, in southern Italy;
Sardinians (Nuragic tribes);
The bulk of today
Italy was inhabited by
Italic tribes who occupied
the modern regions of Lazio, Umbria, Marche, Abruzzo, Molise,
Campania, Basilicata, Calabria,
Apulia and Sicily. Sicily, in addition
to having an Italic population in the Sicels, also was inhabited by
Sicani and the Elymians, of uncertain origin. The Veneti, most
often regarded as an Italic tribe, chiefly inhabited the Veneto,
but extended as far east as
Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Istria, and had
colonies as far south as Lazio.
Beginning in the 8th century BC,
Greeks arrived in
Italy and founded
cities along the coast of southern
Italy and eastern Sicily, which
became known as
Magna Graecia ("Greater Greece"). The
frequently at war with the native Italic tribes, but nonetheless
managed to Hellenize and assimilate a good portion of the indigenous
population located along eastern
Sicily and the Southern coasts of the
Italian mainland. According to Beloch the number of Greek
citizens in south
Italy at its greatest extent reached only
80,000–90,000, while the local people subjected by the
between 400,000–600,000. By the 4th and 3rd century BC,
Greek power in
Italy was challenged and began to decline, and many
Greeks were pushed out of peninsular
Italy by the native Oscan, Brutti
Gauls crossed the
Alps and invaded northern
Italy in the 4th and
3rd centuries BC, settling in the area that became known as Cisalpine
Gaul ("Gaul on this side of the Alps"). Although named after the
Gauls, the region was mostly inhabited by indigenous tribes, namely
the Ligures, Etruscans, Veneti and Euganei. Estimates by Beloch and
Brunt suggest that in the 3rd century BC the Gaulish settlers of north
Italy numbered between 130,000–140,000 out of a total population of
about 1.4 million. According to Pliny and Livy, after the
invasion of the Gauls, some of the
Etruscans living in the Po Valley
sought refuge in the
Alps and became known as the Raeti. The
Raeti inhabited the region of Trentino-Alto Adige, as well as eastern
Switzerland and Tyrol in western Austria. The Ladins of north-eastern
Italy and the
Romansh people of
Switzerland are said to be descended
from the Raeti.
Main article: Colonia (Roman)
Map of roman coloniae during the second century in Italy
The Romans—who according to legend originally consisted of three
ancient tribes: Latins,
Sabines and Etruscans—would go on to
conquer the whole Italian peninsula. During the Roman period hundreds
of cities and colonies were established throughout Italy, including
Florence, Turin, Como, Pavia, Padua, Verona, Vicenza,
Trieste and many
others. Initially many of these cities were colonized by Latins, but
later also included colonists belonging to the other
Italic tribes who
had become Latinized and joined to Rome. After the Roman conquest of
Italy "the whole of
Italy had become Latinized".
After the Roman conquest of
Cisalpine Gaul and the widespread
confiscations of Gallic territory, much of the Gaulish population was
killed or expelled. Many colonies were established by the
Romans in the former Gallic territory of Cisalpine Gaul, which was
then settled by Roman and Italic people. These colonies included
Bologna, Modena, Reggio Emilia, Parma, Piacenza,
Cremona and Forlì.
According to Strabo:
"The greater part of the country used to be occupied by the Boii,
Ligures, Senones, and Gaesatae; but since the
Boii have been driven
out, and since both the
Gaesatae and the
Senones have been
annihilated, only the Ligurian tribes and the Roman colonies are
The Boii, the most powerful and numerous of the Gallic tribes, were
expelled by the Romans after 191 BC and settled in Bohemia.
Population movement and exchange among people from different regions
was not uncommon during the Roman period.
Latin colonies were founded
at Ariminum in 268 and at Firmum in 264, while large numbers of
Picentes, who previously inhabited the region, were moved to Paestum
and settled along the river Silarus in Campania. Between 180–179 BC,
Ligures belonging to the
Apuani tribe were removed from their
home along the modern Ligurian-Tuscan border and deported to Samnium,
an area corresponding to inland Campania, while
Latin colonies were
established in their place at Pisa,
Lucca and Luni. Such
population movements contributed to the rapid Romanization and
Latinization of Italy.
Between the two millenniums
Lombard (Northern Italian) colonies of Sicily: in light blue: the
cities where Gallo-Italic language is spoken today. In dark blue: the
cities where there is a good influence of the Gallo-Italic language.
In purple: ancient Gallo-Italic colonies, the influence in these
cities is variable, also some districts of
Messina were colonized.
A large Germanic confederation of Scirii, Heruli,
Rugians, led by Odoacer, invaded and settled
Italy in 476. They
were preceded by 120,000 Alemanni, including 30,000 warriors with
their families, who settled in the
Po Valley in 371, and by
Burgundians who settled between North Western
France in 443. The Germanic tribe of the
Theoderic the Great
Theoderic the Great conquered
Italy and presented themselves as
Latin culture, mixing Roman culture together with Gothic
culture, in order to legitimize their rule amongst Roman subjects who
had a long-held belief in the superiority of Roman culture over
foreign "barbarian" Germanic culture. The number of Goths under
Theodoric has been variously estimated between 200,000 and
Italy had a population of several million, the
Goths did not constitute a significant addition to the local
population. At the height of their power, there were about
Ostrogoths in a population of 6 or 7 million. Before
Radagaisus led between 200,000 and 400,000 Goths in
Italy in 406
perhaps too high as ancient sources routinely inflated the numbers of
tribal invaders. After the Gothic War, which devastated the local
Ostrogoths were defeated. But in the sixth century,
another Germanic tribe known as the Longobards invaded Italy, which in
the meantime had been reconquered by the East Roman or Byzantine
Empire. The Longobards were a small minority compared to the roughly
four million people in
Italy at the time. They were no more than
500,000 settlers – 10-15% of the total population. They
were later followed by the
Bavarians and the Franks, who conquered and
ruled most of Italy. Numerous groups of
Slavs and Bulgars, pushed by
the Khazars, settled in the Italian peninsula between the 7th and the
Following Roman rule,
Sardinia were conquered by the
Vandals, then by the Ostrogoths, and finally by the Byzantines. At one
Sardinia grew increasingly autonomous from Byzantine rule
to the point of organizing itself into four sovereign Kingdoms or
"Judgedoms" (Judicati) that would last until the Aragonese conquest in
the 15th century. In 687,
Sicily became the Byzantine Theme of Sicily,
during the course of the Arab-Byzantine wars
Sicily gradually came
became the Emirate of
Sicily (831–1072). Later a series of conflicts
with the Normans; would bring about the establishment of the County of
Sicily, and eventually the Kingdom of Sicily, the
Lombards of Sicily
(not to be confused with the Longobards), coming from the Northern
Italy, settled in the central and eastern part of Sicily. After the
marriage between the Norman Roger I of
Sicily with Adelaide del Vasto,
Aleramici family, many Northern Italian colonisers
(known collectively as Lombards) left their homeland, in the
Aleramici's possessions in
Liguria (then known as
Lombardy), to settle on the island of Sicily.
Before them, other
Lombards arrived in Sicily, with an expedition
departed in 1038, led by the Byzantine commander George Maniakes,
which for a very short time managed to snatch
Messina and Syracuse
from the Arabs. The
Lombards who arrived with the Byzantines settled
Randazzo and Troina, while a group of Genoese and other
Liguria settled in Caltagirone.
Map of Tuscan settlements in Sicily.
During the subsequent Swabian rule under the Holy Roman Emperor
Frederick II, who spent most of his life as king of
Sicily in his
court in Palermo, the Islamic element was progressively eradicated
until the massive deportation of the last Muslims of Sicily. As a
result of Arab expulsion, many towns across
Sicily were left
depopulated. By the 12th century, Swabian kings granted immigrants
Italy (particularly Piedmont,
Lombardy and Liguria),
Tuscany in central Italy, and French regions of Normandy,
Brittany (all collectively known as Lombards.)
settlement into Sicily, re-establishing the
Latin element into the
island, a legacy which can be seen in the many Gallo-Italic dialects
and towns found in the interior and western parts of Sicily, brought
by these settlers. It is believed that the Lombard immigrants in
Sicily over a couple of centuries were a total of about 200,000, a
An estimated 20,000
Swabians and 40,000
Normans settled in the
southern half of
Italy during this period. Additional Tuscan
migrants settled in
Sicily after the Florentine conquest of
Some of the expelled Muslims were deported to
Lucera (Lugêrah, as it
was known in Arabic). Their numbers eventually reached between 15,000
and 20,000, leading
Lucera to be called Lucaera Saracenorum
because it represented the last stronghold of Islamic presence in
Italy. The colony thrived for 75 years until it was sacked in 1300 by
Christian forces under the command of the Angevin Charles II of
Naples. The city's Muslim inhabitants were exiled or sold into
slavery, with many finding asylum in
Albania across the Adriatic
Sea. After the expulsions of Muslims in Lucera, Charles II
replaced Lucera's Saracens with Christians, chiefly Burgundian and
Provençal soldiers and farmers, following an initial settlement
of 140 Provençal families in 1273. A remnant of the descendants
of these Provençal colonists, still speaking a Franco-Provençal
dialect, has survived till the present day in the villages of Faeto
and Celle di San Vito.
The founding fathers of
Italy and Young Europe, Giuseppe Garibaldi
Giuseppe Mazzini (right)
Substantial migrations of
Lombards to Naples,
Rome and Palermo,
continued in the 16th and 17th centuries, driven by the constant
overcrowding in the north. Beside that, minor but
significant settlements of
Slavs (the so-called Schiavoni) and
Italy have been recorded.
The geographical and cultural proximity with Southern
Albanians to cross the Strait of Otranto, especially after
Skanderbeg's death and the conquest of the
Balkans by the Ottomans. In
defense of the Christian religion and in search of soldiers loyal to
the Spanish crown, Alfonso V of Aragon, also king of Naples, invited
Arbereshe soldiers to move to
Italy with their families. In return the
king guaranteed to Albanians lots of land and a favourable taxation.
Arbereshe and Schiavoni were used to repopulate abandoned villages or
villages whose population had died in earthquakes, plagues and other
catastrophes. Albanian soldiers were also used to quell rebellions in
Major Slavic colonies were in Friuli, Veneto, Marche, Sicily
and throughout the Kingdom of
Naples (including Apulia, Molise,
Terra di Lavoro
Terra di Lavoro and Campania).
According to a consolidated tradition of historical studies, there are
eight waves of immigration of Albanians in Italy, to which must be
added: the movements within the territory of southern
Italy and the
latest migration (the ninth) in recent years. A remnant of the
descendants of these Albanian colonists, still speaking an Albanian
language, has survived till the present day in many areas of Italy.
Their numbers are between 80,000 and 260,000 people.
In this period, large groups of ethnic
in the northern half of the country. Most of them were quickly
assimilated in the native population. Nevertheless, in 1882, 100,000
German speakers were still living in the Po valley.
Italian diaspora and Oriundo
Napoleon, the most notable Italo-French personality, and
Argentine of Italian ancestry.
Italian migration outside
Italy took place, in different migrating
cycles, for centuries. A diaspora in high numbers took place
after its unification in 1861 and continued through 1914 with the
emergence of the First World War. This rapid outflow and migration of
Italian people across the globe can be attributed to factors such as
the internal economic slump that emerged alongside its unification,
family and the industrial boom that occurred in the world surrounding
Italy after its unification did not seek nationalism but instead
sought work. Sadly, a unified state did not automatically
constitute a sound economy. The global economic expansion, ranging
Industrial Revolution in the late 18th and through mid
19th century, to the use of slave labor in the
Americas did not hit
Italy until much later (with the exception of the "industrial
triangle" between Milan,
Genoa and Turin) This lag resulted in a
deficit of work available in
Italy and the need to look for work
elsewhere.The mass industrialization and urbanization globally
resulted in higher labor mobility and the need for
Italians to stay
anchored to the land for economic support declined.
Moreover, better opportunities for work were not the only incentive to
move; family played a major role and the dispersion of Italians
Italians were more likely to migrate to countries where they
had family established beforehand. These ties are shown to be
stronger in many cases than the monetary incentive for migration,
taking into account a familial base and possibly an Italian migrant
community, greater connections to find opportunities for work, housing
etc. Thus, thousands of Italian men and women left
dispersed around the world and this trend only increased as World War
Notably, it was not as if
Italians had never migrated before, internal
migration between North and Southern
Italy before unification was
Italy caught on to the global industrialization
sooner than Southern Italy, therefore it was considered more modern
technologically, and tended to be inhabited by the bourgeoisie.
Alternatively, rural and agro-intensive Southern
Italy was seen as
economically backward and was mainly populated by lower class
peasantry. Given these disparities, prior to unification (and
arguably after) the two sections of Italy, North and South were
essentially seen by
Italians and other nations as separate countries.
So, migrating from one part of
Italy to next could be seen as though
they were indeed migrating to another country or even continent.
Furthermore, large-scale migrations phenomena did not recede until the
late 1920s, well into the Fascist regime, and one last wave can be
observed after the end of the Second World War.
Over 80 million people of full or part Italian descent live outside
Europe, with nearly 40 million living in
South America (primarily
Venezuela and Uruguay), about 19 million living in
North America (
United States and Canada) and 1 million in Oceania
Australia and New Zealand). Others live in other parts of Europe
(primarily The United Kingdom, Germany,
France and Switzerland). Most
Italian citizens living abroad live in other nations of the European
Autochthonous Italian communities outside Italy
Main articles: Istrian Italians, Dalmatian Italians, Swiss Italian,
Italians of Crimea, Corsican people, and Maltese Italians
In both the Slovenian and Croatian portions of Istria, in
well as in the city of Rijeka, Italian refers to autochthonous
speakers of Italian and various Italo-Dalmatian languages, natives in
the region since before the inception of the Venetian Republic. In the
aftermath of the
Istrian exodus following the Second World War, most
Italian-speakers are today predominantly located in the west and south
of Istria, and number about 30,000. The number of inhabitants
with Italian ancestry is likely much greater but undeterminable. In
the first Austrian census carried out in 1870 the number of Italian
Dalmatians varied between 40,000 and 50,000 amongst the about 250,000
inhabitants of Dalmatia, or 20% of the total Dalmatian
In the French County of Nice, autochthonous speakers of regional
Italy (Ligurian and Piedmontese), are natives in the
region since before annexation to
France in 1860. The number of
inhabitants with Italian ancestry is generally indeterminable, and the
French language is now ubiquitous. In addition,
Corsica was a
part of the Republic of
Genoa until 1768 and most of the islanders
still have a certain level of proficiency of Corsican, a language of
the Italo-Dalmatian family closely related to Tuscan. The Italian
language ceased to have official status in
Corsica in 1859 when
it was supplanted by French and a process of de-Italianization was
started by the French government in
Corsica (and in 1861 the Nizzardo
A similar process happened in Malta, where the
Maltese Italians have
practically disappeared in the last two centuries after Britain took
control of the island during
Swiss Italian is spoken as natively by about 350,000 people in the
Ticino and in the southern part of Graubünden (Canton
Grigioni). Swiss-Italian also refers to the Italian speaking
population in this region (southern Switzerland) close to the border
Swiss Italian dialects are spoken in emigrant communities
around the world, including in Australia.
List of Italians
List of Sardinians
List of Sicilians
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^ "Total ancestry categories tallied for people with one or more
ancestry categories reported 2010 American Community Survey 1-Year
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^ Statistics Canada. "Immigration and Ethnocultural Diversity
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^ "Inmigración italiana al Perú". Espejodelperu.com.pe. Retrieved 4
^ "ABS Ancestry". 2012.
^ "Publikation - Bevölkerung - Bevölkerung mit Migrationshintergrund
- Ergebnisse des Mikrozensus - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.2 - 2015 -
Statistisches Bundesamt (Destatis)". Destatis.de. Retrieved 12
^ "Vreemde afkomst 01/01/2012". Npdata.be. Retrieved 29 March
^ "The tables 1.1 to 1.4 show estimates of the UK population by
country of birth and tables 2.1 to 2.4 show estimates of the UK
population by nationality. They are produced using the Annual
Population Survey which is the Labour Force Survey plus various sample
boosts" (XLS). Ons.gov.uk. Retrieved 12 December 2017.
^ "Statistiche relative all'elenco aggiornato dei cittadini italiani
residenti all'estero (AIRE)". Ministero dell'Interno. Ministero
^ "Episodio 10: Italianos". Canal Once. Archived from the original on
5 March 2016. Retrieved 6 July 2015.
^ "ФМС России". Fms.gov.ru. Retrieved 12 December 2017.
^ "Bevölkerung nach Staatsangehörigkeit und Geburtsland". Statistik
Austria (in German).
Italians looking for work in
Albania – 19,000, says minister".
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^ Demographics of Croatia
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^ Miti e simboli della rivoluzione nazionale. Treccani.it
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^ "Criteria underlying legislation concerning citizenship". Italian
Ministry of Interior. Archived from the original on 22 June 2012.
Retrieved 22 September 2012.
^ Ruggiero Romano, Corrado Vivanti, (1972). 'I caratteri originali'.
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Torino: Einaudi. pp.958–959.
^ Maiden, Dr. Martin; Parry, Mair (March 7, 2006). The
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^ "ISTAT". Retrieved 29 March 2015.
^ Cohen, Robin (1995). The Cambridge survey of world migration.
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 142–144.
^ "Ministero dell'Interno". infoaire.interno.it. Retrieved 12 December
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^ Macesich, George (2000). Issues in Money and Banking. United States:
Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 42. ISBN 0-275-96777-8.
^ Michael Barone (2 September 2010). "The essence of Italian culture
and the challenge of the global age". Council for Research in Values
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^ Keating, Michael (2004). Regions and regionalism in Europe.
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^ "Italian family and culture". Syracuse University in Florence.
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^ OLD, p. 974: "first syll. naturally short (cf. Quint.Inst.1.5.18),
and so scanned in Lucil.825, but in dactylic verse lengthened metri
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^ Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Roman Antiquities, 1.35, on LacusCurtius
^ Aristotle, Politics, 7.1329b, on Perseus
^ Thucydides, The Peloponnesian War, 6.2.4, on Perseus
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^ "History of Philosophy 70". maritain.nd.edu. Retrieved 12 December
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^ Several Italian encyclopaedias claim Meucci as the inventor of the
telephone, including: – the "Treccani"  – the Italian version
of Microsoft digital encyclopaedia, Encarta. – Enciclopedia Italiana
di Scienze, Lettere ed Arti (Italian Encyclopedia of Science,
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^ Ricci-Curbastro, Gregorio (1918), Lezioni di Analisi algebrica ed
infinitesimale (1926 ed.), Padova: Tip. Universitaria
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civiltà dell'Italia antica (in Italian). 6/1. Spazio Tre. Cf.
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Italian). Il Mulino. p. 490.
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^ Olivia E. Hayden. "Urban Planning in the Greek Colonies in Sicily
and Magna Graecia". Tufts University, 2013.
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Italy 225 BC – AD 100. Cambridge; New
York: Cambridge University Press, 2012. p. 43-44
Pliny the Elder
Pliny the Elder III.20
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succession: the foundation in 268 of the
Latin colony of Ariminum ....
the annexation of the whole Picentine land save for … Ancona and …
Asculum; the transportation of large numbers of
Picentes to the ager
Picentinus on the west coast, and finally in 264 the planting of a
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^ Ettore Pais, Ancient Italy: Historical and Geographical
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