Italy….When you hear this word what is the first thing that you think? Is that pizza, spaghetti, fashion, Rome, art, history…Italy is one of the most interesting and the most particular countries in the world. If you didn’t knew much about it here are some facts about this unique country:

  1. The official name of Italy is Repubblica Italiana (Italian Republic), the name Italy comes form the word italia which means calf land ( the reason lies in fact that bull was a symbol of the Southern Italian tribes)
  2. The capital of Italy is Rome (Eternal City). Rome is about 3000 years old. It is one of the most beautiful cities in the world and it has many must see sights.
  3. There are two independent states in Italy: the Republic of San Marino and the Vatican City. San Marino is the oldest republic on the world and it has about 30000 citizens, while the Vatican City is the only nations in the world that can lock it own gates at night.
  4. Known as the “Three Fountains”, Dante Alighieri, Francesco Petrarca and Giovanni Boccaccio are the three most popular Italian authors of all the time. Dante’s Divine Comedy (Divina Commedia) had a big influence in Italian literature.
  5. Soccer is the most popular sport in Italy. The famous San Siro stadium in Milan can take 85000 people. Italy has won the World cup four times (1934, 1938, 1982, and 2006). Soccer fans in Italy are called tifosi (carriers of typhus).
  6. Italy is among the leaders of fashion industry. In 1950s, Nino Cerutti and Valentino created the stylish fashion. Armani, Versace, Prada, Gucci are world wide famous designers.
  7. Italy is also known for fine sports cars such as Ferrari and Lamborghini.
  8. Venice in Italy is one of the most unusual and the most visited cities. It is built on muddy islands in a wide and a shallow lagoon. It is also called town on the water and it is number one destination for love couples.
  9. The first violin was made in Italy in 1500s. It was probably in the workshop of Andrea Amati in Cremona.
  10. The first operas were composed in Italy at the end of the sixteenth century. The names: Gioacchino Rossini, Giacomo Puccini, Giuseppe Verdi, Luciano Pavarotti, Claudio Monteverdi and many others are the most famous in the world of opera.
  11. The language of music is Italian. The word “scale” comes from scala, meaning “step”. Andante, adagio, presto, vivace, allegro are some of the Italian notations.
  12. In northern Italy, last names often end in “i”, while those from the south often end in “o”.
  13. Parmesan cheese originated in the area around Parma, Italy. Italians also created many other cheeses, including gorgonzola, mozzarella, provolone, and ricotta.
  14. No one knows when the pizza was invented, but the people of Naples made it popular.
  15. Over 50 million tourists a year visit Italy. Be one of them!
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