Culture

Classic Italian Culture

Statue Bernini

Statue Bernini

Part of the allure of Italy and Italian culture is the sense of timelessness. Rome is the Eternal City where the ancient rubs shoulders with the present, Venice serenely passes the centuries amid its slowly sinking  palazzi. The art and science of the Renaissance  is still alive and visible in Florence while Vatican City's Sistine Chapel is as vibrant as the day Michelangelo's paint dried. In this section you will find links to our subcategories on Italy's great cultural achievements, however be sure to also visit our section on Lifestyle and Modern Italian Culture

 

Chanel: 
We can thank history for it   Roman soldiers entertaining tourists off a balcony of the ancient Palace of Diocletian in Split, Croatia (Paolo Nascimbeni)   Once upon a time, starting from the Romans up to the glorious days of the Repubbliche Marinare, Italy was a world-dominating country: it was its culture, of course, and its flair for artistic expression and beauty, but it was also its economical and political power. Once upon a time, Italy was known for its strength on the seas, for the excellence of its traders, for the courage of its armies... H...
The first part of this article ( Italian cities outside Italy I ) was dedicated to famous towns and cities in Europe with Italian ties because founded by the Romans and by the Savoias, the Italian royal family. We've learnt about the Roman origins of London and Paris and about how a strong Savoia influence is found in the architecture and the history of places like Nice and Chambéry.  Here, we'll focus on the vestiges of the Genoese and the Venetian hegemony  upon the Thyrrenian and the Adriatic seas, and the lands overlooking them.    The sea an...
Ten Facts you may not know about Italy   The weather is getting nicer and nicer and when Summer is in the air we all feel like to read light and breezy things: here is an easy peasy piece about some (possibly) unknown facts about Italy and its people.     Art, Nature and Science   1. Italy has the highest number of beaches in Europe You thought it was Spain? Or Greece? No. It's us. Italy has a coastline of  7400 km (4600 miles). Sandy or rocky, on the Tyrrenian, Meditteranean or Adriatic sea, Italy's beaches are a beauty to e...
Stereotypes Italians don't like
Friday, January 09TH, 2015 by AnnaDe Filippo
  An old saying maintains that Italians are a nation of poets, sailors and lovers: well, there is nothing quite as stereotyped as that, yet, even in this, one finds a grain of truth. Italy did give birth to some of the most influential literary and artistic movements: think of Dante and Guido Cavalcanti's Dolce Stil Novo, which set literary standards in Europe for the whole of the Middle Ages, not to speak of the Renaissance, the cultural and artistic influence of which we still read and see today, in the very way we think. All of this: 100% made in Italy. Even the pa...
Italian Culture
Sunday, November 23TH, 2014 by admin
Leonardo's Helicopter   When it comes to culture and the arts, there is not a field in which Italy has not exercised a profound influence. From music to literature, from architecture to visual arts and sculpture, from medicine to natural sciences and technology, the history of Italy has shown the weight of the country in each of these fields.   Italy  may be fighting against political instability, lack of employment and the rising of the brain drain phenomenon, but the cultural wealth of the country is still alive and very much kicking, waiting to be disc...
Taste of Italy
Tuesday, October 21TH, 2014 by FrancescaBezzone
  I lived abroad for fifteen years, and the taste of Italy, I certainly missed. During this time, I have learnt a lot about my country. Yes, because for some mysterious trick of the mind, it is always when you are far from a place or from someone that you truly begin to know them: does that not happen to lovers as well, sometimes? Anyway: fifteen years away from Italy, fifteen years where I learnt to look at it more objectively. It is hard, because right now, one may think that the cons of being in the country (high taxes, no work, a risible political force) are overwhelmingly sup...
  Italy is by many considered a very romantic country, where people decide to spend time with their partner. Some Italian towns and cities are truly special for those in love, also because they have been the backdrop to some of the most famous historic, literary and legendary love stories of all times. Whether real or not, every Italian knows the names of these lovers, some of them famous because sang by our poets, others simply because they automatically spring to mind when thinking of Italy and love. Let's take a look at some of them!    ...
By Alfredo Iannaccone The final countdown to Milan Expo 2015 has started yesterday in Piazza Gae Aulenti in Milan. Born as a night of celebrations, hosted by Antonella Clerici and Enrico Bertolino, and made particularly pleasant by the cuisine of Davide Oldan, the soirée saw its climax in a magnificent performance by Andrea Bocelli.  One year separates us now from the official inauguation of the Expo, a year where the event's planning will enter an entirely new phase. This phase will be characterized by a further acceleration of the Expo 2015's site development, as well as a spur in...
History of the Italian Flag
Friday, June 01TH, 2012 by admin
The Italian Flag   Can you remember off hand the colors of the Italian flag ? Think of 10 countries whose flags you know . . . most probably Italy is among that group. The Italian flag owes it notoriety to  all the Italian food places that sell pizza, pasta, gelato that have 'invaded' the world. It is strange because Italians are not as proud of their flag as Americans are of the Stars & Stripes. You will very rarely see a house in Italy with the flag on the front porch. But I think very few Italians would feel comfortable damaging in any way their fl...
Italian Proverbs I
Friday, June 01TH, 2012 by admin
Italians like to play with words and there are plenty of examples out there to show us so. Proverbi, sayings, still pepper conversations and are used quite profusely by older and younger generations alike. You'll recognize some of them, as they are common in English, too. Others, you may find a bit more original.  Let's take a look at a few of the most famous!    Donne e motori Gioie e dolori. Women and motors, joy and pain A caval donato non si guarda in bocca. Don't look a gift horse in the mouth.  A chi dai il dito si prende anche il...