The Italy portal
Portale Italia

Flag Italy
Location of Italy within Europe

Italy (Italian: Italia [iˈtaːlja] (About this soundlisten)), officially the Italian Republic (Italian: Repubblica Italiana [reˈpubblika itaˈljaːna]), is a European country consisting of a peninsula delimited by the Alps and surrounded by several islands. Italy is located in south-central Europe, and it is also considered a part of Western Europe. The country covers a total area of 301,340 km2 (116,350 sq mi) and shares land borders with France, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, and the enclaved microstates of Vatican City and San Marino. Italy has a territorial exclave in Switzerland (Campione) and a maritime exclave in the Tunisian Sea (Lampedusa). With around 60 million inhabitants, Italy is the third-most populous member state of the European Union. The capital and largest city is Rome; other major cities are Milan, Naples, Turin, Palermo, Genoa, Bologna, Florence and Venice.

Due to its central geographic location in Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, Italy has historically been home to myriad peoples and cultures. In addition to the various ancient peoples dispersed throughout what is now modern-day Italy, the most predominant being the Indo-European Italic peoples who gave the peninsula its name, beginning from the classical era, Phoenicians and Carthaginians founded colonies mostly in insular Italy, Greeks established settlements in the so-called Magna Graecia of Southern Italy, while Etruscans and Celts inhabited central and northern Italy respectively. An Italic tribe known as the Latins formed the Roman Kingdom in the 8th century BC, which eventually became a republic with a government of the Senate and the People. The Roman Republic initially conquered and assimilated its neighbours on the Italian peninsula, eventually expanding and conquering parts of Europe, North Africa and Asia. By the first century BC, the Roman Empire emerged as the dominant power in the Mediterranean Basin and became a leading cultural, political and religious centre, inaugurating the Pax Romana, a period of more than 200 years during which Italy's law, technology, economy, art, and literature developed. Italy remained the homeland of the Romans and the metropole of the empire, whose legacy can also be observed in the global distribution of culture, governments, Christianity and the Latin script.

Selected article - show another

Funerary Monument to Sir John Hawkwood: the fresco measures 732 × 404 cm (288 × 159 in); with Trompe-l'œil frame added in the 16th century, 820 × 515 cm (323 × 203 in).

The Funerary Monument (or Equestrian Monument) to Sir John Hawkwood is a fresco by Paolo Uccello, commemorating English condottiero John Hawkwood, commissioned in 1436 for Florence Cathedral. The fresco is an important example of art commemorating a soldier-for-hire who fought in the Italian peninsula and is a seminal work in the development of perspective.

The politics of the commissioning and recommissioning of the fresco have been analyzed and debated by historians. The fresco is often cited as a form of "Florentine propaganda" for its appropriation of a foreign soldier of fortune as a Florentine hero and for its implied promise to other condottieri of the potential rewards of serving Florence. The fresco has also been interpreted as a product of internal political competition between the Albizzi and Medici factions in Renaissance Florence, due to the latter's modification of the work's symbolism and iconography during its recommissioning. Read more...
List of selected articles

Selected picture - show another

Did you know... - show another

First Italian balloon flight medal
First Italian balloon flight medal
  • ...that the Monte Viso Tunnel is the most ancient tunnel dug through a mountain in Italy?

Selected fare or cuisine - show another

Spaghetti alla carbonara

Carbonara (Italian: [karboˈnaːra]) is an Italian pasta dish from Rome made with egg, hard cheese, cured pork, and black pepper. The dish arrived at its modern form, with its current name, in the middle of the 20th century.

The cheese is usually Pecorino Romano, Parmigiano-Reggiano, or a combination of the two. Spaghetti is the most common pasta, but fettuccine, rigatoni, linguine, or bucatini are also used. Normally guanciale or pancetta are used for the meat component, but lardons of smoked bacon are a common substitute outside Italy. Read more...

Categories

General images - show another

The following are images from various Italy-related articles on Wikipedia.

Topics

Related portals

Associated Wikimedia

The following Wikimedia Foundation sister projects provide more on this subject:

Wikibooks
Books

Commons
Media

Wikinews 
News

Wikiquote 
Quotations

Wikisource 
Texts

Wikiversity
Learning resources

Wikivoyage 
Travel guides

Wiktionary 
Definitions

Wikidata 
Database

Wikispecies 
Species

Portals

Purge server cache