Italy, one of the most popular travel destinations, is officially the youngest European country. Its history began back in 1861 when several small states decided to unite and live together as one big country. As for Rome, the busiest and most populated city of Italy, it started to exist in 753 BC. It was the center of the powerful Roman Empire that successfully took under control many parts of Europe and some parts of North Africa. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the country was divided into many little states, some of which later united.
Radical changes in the life of Italy and its citizens started to occur in 1925 when Benito Mussolini was proclaimed the leader of the country. He was one of the allies supporting Adolf Hitler in the WW II. After his murder in 1945, the previous order was established, with the royal family ruling the country. This didn’t last long, as the country officially abolished the law of ruling monarchy in 1946.
If you want to know more about this fascinating country, this article will be useful for you. Today, we want to share with our readers a set of interesting facts about Italy. Here they are…
1. Italy has one of the oldest fountains in the world
Rome has as many as 50 large fountains and multiple small fountains of various design. One of the most popular fountains that is visited by many is the Trevi Fountain, built back in the 19th B.C. Later, it was rebuilt so that to improve its structure and architecture. The legend says that anyone who throws a coin in this fountain will definitely return to Rome in the future, an interesting fact about Italy. Believe it or not, but many people believe this legend to actually work. The sum of the money thrown to the fountain every day equals to €3,000. All the money collected is then either spent on the renovation of the fountain or is donated to the Red Cross.
2. The country has a very low birthrate
The statistic shows that the birth rate has drastically decreased in recent years. With the aging of the population being one of the burning issues, the government is working on the measures to be taken so that to fix the situation.
Despite this, the population of Italy has increased, with thousands of people immigrating to the country every year.
3. Italians love pasta
Pasta, a traditional meal of Italy, wasn’t always served with tomato sauce. When the meal appeared, it was eaten with honey and sugar. Can you imagine that? Today, pasta is one of the most popular dishes worldwide that can be ordered in almost any European restaurant. However, real Italian pasta is available only in Italy. There are as many as 500 varieties of pasta, which means that one will definitely find the one he/she likes.
Italians like this local meal very much, with an average native Italian eating 25 kg of pasta every year, a fun fact about Italy.
4. Italy is the country where cats have rights
Cats living in Italy have certain privileges, like the freedom to walk and explore ruins any time they want. Out of love for these animals that are considered to be part of the cultural heritage, the government introduced a set of laws protecting their rights. One of the laws strictly forbids to kill cats, with anyone found guilty of the crime to be severely punished. The criminal will either have to pay a huge fine or spend time in prison.
An interesting fact about Italy is that it is the country where one of the richest cats in the world lives. After the death of his owner, the cat inherited around €10 million and an expensive real estate. The affluent cat is now under the care of a trusted nurse because the laws obviously do not allow animals to inherit anything from their owners directly.
5. The natives have superstitions that seem absurd
One of the superstitions says that an unmarried girl should not touch a broom with her feet while sweeping the floor. It is believed that if her feet touch the broom, she will never find her love and marry anyone, a fun fact about Italy.
One more absurd superstition is that a cat’s sneeze attracts luck. Those who happen to hear it will have luck on their side in all their beginnings.
6. Italian men are reluctant to move out of the family home
The majority of young men in Italia do not hurry to marry and live without their mothers by their side. Of course, living with parents has its advantages because grown-up men do not have to pay bills and cook meals for themselves every day. Whatever the real reason is, Italian men are so much attached to their mothers that they simply can’t imagine their lives without them. The trend to create a family after the age of 40 is a threat to the institute of family, which influences the birth rate.
7. Pizza wasn’t always one of the Italian’s most favorite meals
Believe it or not, but it is true. While tomatoes appeared in Europe only in the 16th century, the pizza as a new meal appeared several centuries later. It was invented by the poor who had no food except for bread. Pizzas were first sold by street vendors, with the first pizzeria opening in Naples in 1830. No one at that time could imagine that pizza would turn into one of the most favorite dishes all over the world, a fun fact about Italy.
8. Italian Gelato is healthier than usual ice-cream
Italian Gelato is made of only natural ingredients, which ensures that it contains less fat than an ordinary ice-cream bought in a supermarket. Italians eat this dessert regularly and yet stay slim and fit.
Wide variety of entertainment options, delicious meals, sea, warm climate and multiple places with rich and long history contribute to the popularity of Italy as a top travel destination. We hope that the information provided above will encourage you to go to Italy by yourself and see all of its beauty.
I hope that this article on Italy facts was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Country Facts Page!