31 curiosities about Italy that everyone wants to know

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So today we will learn a little more about the “Land of the Boot”, Italy.

1st Curiosity

At just over 311,000 km², Italy is the 71st largest country in the world

2nd Curiosity

Italy is twenty-third most populous, with over 60 million inhabitants.

3rd Curiosity

Its capital is Rome, which with over 2.7 million people is the fourth largest city in Europe.

4th Curiosity

In addition, it is the only city in the world that has the state within its territory, which in this case is the Vatican State.

5th Curiosity

Italy is the only country in the world that has two countries wedged into its territory, which in this case are the Vatican and San Marino.

6th Curiosity

In a museum in Florence, you can see Galileo Galilei’s middle finger, big toe and tooth. For those who don’t know, Galileo was the father of experimental science, the first to use a telescope to observe the sky and helped to overthrow the geocentric theory, which said that the earth was at the centre of the solar system.

7th Curiosity

Italy is the eighth largest economy in the world and the fifth country that receives the most tourists, almost 60 million annually.

8th Curiosity

Ferrari is the most common surname over there the word is the plural of ‘Ferraro’, which in Italian means blacksmith, and derived from Latin, means iron.

9th Curiosity

And speaking of Latin, it originated on the outskirts of Rome, in ancient times. As it was the language of the Roman Empire, it ended up being one of the most spoken languages in the world at the time. Today it is considered a dead language, but it has left its daughters, which we call romance languages, Portuguese, French, Spanish, Italian, Romanian and Galician, today, the official language in the Vatican.

10th Curiosity

Since we mentioned the Roman Empire, it was the largest empire in the entire Western world and without doubt, one of the most powerful, stretching across Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

11th Curiosity

As it was very large and complicated to control, in 284 it was divided in two, the West and the East. Their respective capitals were Rome and Constantinople, today Istanbul. The western empire fell with Rome in 476. The Eastern Empire, which became known as the Byzantine Empire, lasted more than a thousand years, only falling in 1453, when it was taken over by the Turks.

12th Curiosity

The name Italy has a curious meaning, it means ‘land of the calves’.

13th Curiosity

The place with more Italian blood outside Italy is Brazil. There are more than 25 million descendants, even the São Paulo football team was founded by Italians.

14th Curiosity

In 1968, an Italian man built a platform off the coast of the country and proclaimed himself president of the micronation he created, the then Republic of Rose Island. It lasted from June 1968 until February the following year, when the Italian navy took the man out and detonated his “country” completely.

15th Curiosity

The word ‘ciao’ has two meanings over there, it can be used both to say ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’.

16th Curiosity

Many cities and coastal regions that existed during the Roman Empire are now completely at the bottom of the sea, as many areas of the coastline have simply submerged. The most famous city to submerge is Baia, the ancient Las Vegas of the Roman Empire.

17th Curiosity

The Colosseum only received that name centuries later, initially it was called a Flavian Amphitheatre. The business was so incredible that, in addition to gladiatorial battles, it also held simulations of naval battles, unfortunately earthquakes damaged its structure quite a lot, moreover, it suffered looting in the following centuries.

18th Curiosity

Italy is the country with the largest number of Unesco World Heritage Sites, 53 in all and more than 40 are on the waiting list.

19th Curiosity

There is a lot of rivalry and even a certain prejudice of the northern region in relation to the southern region of the country, because the southern region is poorer and the customs are also somewhat different.

20th Curiosity

The country has a little piece wedged into Switzerland. Campione d’Italia is the Italian territory that has only 2km² and is only one and a half kilometres away from the rest of the country.

21st Curiosity

Initially, Venice was composed of a set of 124 islets that began to be popular and attached to each other from the 7th century, and it is not on the sea, but a lagoon, it has more than 400 bridges, about 70 of which are private. In its flag the colours green, white and red represent respectively, hope, faith and charity.

22nd Curiosity

The tower of Pisa began to be built in 1174, its purpose was to house the bell of the city’s cathedral, however, it began to tilt during the construction of the third floor. This caused a lot of headaches for the engineers and the work was only completed in 1354. Today it has almost a 4º slope and they finally managed to stabilise it in the 1990s. The country is so beautiful architecturally that even the works that went wrong turn out very well and are very beautiful.

23rd Curiosity

The coins thrown into the Trevi Fountain in Rome are all passed on to charity or social projects. In 2016 alone, over 1 million euros were collected from the waters of the fountain and this craze for throwing coins backwards only came about after a Hollywood actress did it in a film.

24th Curiosity

The University of Bologna is the oldest in Europe and was founded in 1088. It is also home to the largest university on the continent, the University of Rome, which has more than 150,000 students, in addition, it was the first country to have a woman with a doctoral degree.

25th Curiosity

The city of Milan is considered to be one of the most important centres of luxury fashion in the world, being home to renowned brands such as Valentino, Gucci, Versace, Prada, Armani and Dolce Cabana.

26th Curiosity

In some cities there, people do not speak Italian, because some speak Venetian, Neapolitan, Sicilian and Milanese. The regions have many dialects, so not all Italians necessarily speak Italian.

27th Curiosity

The town of Viganella is surrounded by mountains that block the sun for 6 months every year, the solution was to install giant mirrors to reflect the sunlight to a part of the town.

28th Curiosity

The Italians have invented many things, some of them extremely delicious like pizza, ice cream shells and even Nutella. They also created many useful objects such as spectacles, telephones, typewriters, life-jackets, pianos, violins and many others.

29th Curiosity

In Italy there is an underwater status that was built to honour the first Italian diver and is located in the place where he died. The Christ of the abyss is 2.5 metres high and weighs over 15 tonnes, and although it is a little scary, thousands of people dive and explore it up close.

30th Curiosity

In Italy Mickey is called Topolino and Donald Duck is called Paperino.

31st Curiosity

The unlucky number in Italy is not 13, but I 17. The explanation for this is that in the old days, when people died, they wrote VIXI, which means Vivi in Latin, but if we change the order of the letters to form the Roman number you find 17, so the worst Friday there is not Friday 13, but Friday 17.

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