Questions tagged [italy]

Italy is a country in Southern Europe, South of Alps, covering all Italian Peninsula.

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1answer
220 views

Are the Swiss flag and the flag/coat of arms of Piedmont related?

Below is a picture of a flag I recently saw in a restaurant, that looked to me like the Swiss flag with a bridge drawn on it: Through image search I discovered this was actually the coat of arms of ...
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1answer
143 views

What would a small-scale merchant in Renaissance Italy consider a necessity at home?

Presume we have a small-scale merchant in Renaissance Italy. By "small scale" I mean someone who has a shop and a house but isn't big enough to be a "rich merchant". I believe that something like ...
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Help identify Venetian headpiece

So I’ve been trying to find the technical term for these headpieces usually worn during Venetian Carnevale. I’m unsure if they are medieval in origin or a type of turban. What is the difference ...
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Where was the Barberini psalter created?

Would you know where the Barberini psalter was created? I have checked the on-line sources and cannot find the answer (maybe I have overlooked it?) It was created in the 11th century. The obvious ...
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How did the Allies achieve air superiority on Sicily?

The Allies had freed all of Africa by the start of 1943. Afterwards, they landed in Sicily with a huge air force and fleet. How did they manage to land with the opposition of the Luftwaffe and Regia ...
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233 views

When and how did David become the mascot of Florence?

My understanding is that David, son of Jesse, King of Israel was the mascot of Florence. And that that was the impetus for Michelangelo's statue being created in the first place. Certainly David ...
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Teaching of Mathematics in Italy and in Germany in the fifteenth century

In is book Beyond numeracy, John Allen Paulos tells this story: “A German merchant of the fifteenth century asked an eminent professor where he should send his son for a good business education. ...
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532 views

How did agricultural productivity change in Italy with the fall of the Roman Empire and through the early Middle Ages?

I have heard that overall agricultural productivity decreased with the fall of the Roman Empire in the West. In part at least it must be in relation to a general decrease of population - less people ...
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339 views

Please identify this WW1 Italian Uniform

Can you tell me anything about the uniform in the picture? I believe the picture was taken around the time of the first WW in Sicily. The insignia on the hat, the hat itself, the boots and sword makes ...
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1answer
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Is the historical consensus that Galileo did not drop balls from the Leaning Tower of Pisa?

A narrative commonly taught in schools and propagated in books is that Galileo Galilei "dropped two spheres of different masses from the Leaning Tower of Pisa to demonstrate that their time of descent ...
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1answer
377 views

Is the story about Mussolini and Oliver Hardy apocryphal?

There is a story that Mussolini wore bowler hats until someone told him that he looked like Oliver Hardy. Is this true? Is there any evidence for it or is it apocryphal? The times I have seen the ...
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1answer
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What is the meaning of the elements of this emblem?

Click for larger version This is a reproduction of an emblem passed down my family. The odd elliptical shape comes from the fact that the original is on a ring used for wax-sealing. We guess that ...
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Earliest surviving SPQR inscriptions?

I have looked a bit around, and was wondering if there was any information about which could be the earliest still surviving and accessible (for public) inscriptions which included the Latin ...
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What was the mortality rate of the Black Death?

There are primary sources indicating high mortality in Italy. But that's it. The 1m+ death estimates seem to all originate from a single person writing in the 19th century (Gasquet). Gasquet has been ...
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349 views

How did World War I affect women in Italy?

I’m writing a paper on fascism and the ideology of women. One of my topics I plan in discussing is World War I and how it impacted women both during and following the war. I wanted to write 5 pages ...
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What was the conflict in Milan from 1041-1044?

I was researching the Pataria movement in Milan that began around 1045. I found mention of a compromise of Milan in 1044. This got me interested in these earlier events. The only information that I ...
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1answer
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Why was the War of the League of Cambrai such a hot mess?

The War of the League of Cambrai was fought from 1508-1516 by...basically everyone who had any interest in Italy at the time (which was most of Europe). It was a mess: It's been described by one ...
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610 views

What does this Italian soldier's 1930’s uniform tell us about his job and rank?

The below photo of a soldier was taken in Sicily in the mid to late 1930’s. I have been told he may have served in Libya for the Italians. What type of soldier was he and what rank did he have? What ...
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In the Lombard period, could not the Byzantine Empire have occupied Rome?

The Italian campaigns were finished in 556. The three chapters schism between the emperor and Pope came to a head. Some popes were dragged to Constantinople. This shows that the Emperor was exerting ...
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How did the Medici originally get into finance?

I'm trying to find out how the Medici family rose to power. Most sites simply say, "Banking and finance." I'm trying to figure out a bit more specific. How did Cosimo de Medici originally get into ...
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1answer
258 views

When is the Cumaean Temple to Apollo dated?

Cumae was founded by Ionians from Euboea around 750. Cumae had a Temple to Apollo and Sibyline oracle that channeled Apollo. In Greece, Apollo and its oracle became active in the eighth century. It ...
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Was Mussolini's March on Rome inspired by ancient history?

As is well-known, Mussolini was very fond of ancient Rome. I am wondering whether he got the idea for the March on Rome from ancient examples. Indeed, marching on Rome to drive home a political ...
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Why was Italy unified under the Kingdom of Piedmont-Sardinia and not under a stronger state?

On paper the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies appears much stronger with about twice the land and population. So how come it was Victor Emmanuel II who became King of Italy and not Francis II Bourbon? Was ...
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Symbolism in illustration for a book by Riccati

The front cover of the book Opere (1761) by Jacopo Riccati, author of the celebrated Riccati equation, has the illustration depicted below. What is the symbolism incorporated in this illustration? (...
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776 views

Which Allied forces held the French-Italian border from Operation Dragoon to the end of WWII in Europe?

Since the Germans and their puppet state the Italian Social Republic continued to hold northern Italy almost to the end of the war, it was necessary for the Allies to man the fortifications on the ...
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Why does Brazil have many more Italian descendants than the U.S. or Argentina when the latter two received more Italian immigrants?

According to the wikipedia page about Italian emigration (in Portuguese, but the table with immigrants to each country is very easy to read) the U.S. received 5.6 million Italians between 1870 and ...
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What is the manifestation of the Holy Roman Emperor reign in Italy?

According to Wikipedia, The Holy Roman Emperor was also called "King of italy", and it says there that he ruled over a big part of Italy. But I have also read that throughout the Middle Ages, many ...
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1answer
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World War 1: Why did Italy not fight until 1915?

Today I learnt history about World War 1 and I have a question that has been bothering me. According to what I have studied, the Triple Alliance (1882-1915) was an alliance between Germany, Austria-...
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1answer
841 views

Why did the Tripartite Pact take so long to sign?

The Tripartite Pact was signed by Germany, Italy, and Japan on 1940 Sep 27. By this time, Germany had already invaded Poland, conquered France, conquered Denmark and Norway, and the Battle of Britain ...
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Did the Allies benefit, by having Italy fight on Germany's side rather than remain neutral?

All things considered and with perfect hindsight, did the Allies benefit, by having Italy fight on Germany's side rather than remain neutral? I was inspired to ask this question after reading Paul ...
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1answer
251 views

When did the tilt of the tower of Pisa become seen as a feature instead of a defect?

The Leaning Tower of Pisa is well-known for its tilt, and while it's a beautiful structure, it's unlikely it would've received such world fame without the poor foundations that caused it to sink and ...
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1answer
943 views

Please help find these paintings

I've read in a book written about 80 years ago descriptions of 3 paintings, the paintings were seen about 130 years ago. These are the descriptions (translated to English): Painting #1 Painting of ...
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1answer
176 views

Did the legal principle of conflict of interest exist in the 17th century?

17th century Europe saw many trials related to Catholic-Protestant disagreements. Was the legal principle of conflict of interest operative at the time, so that for example the same person could not ...
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1answer
265 views

How were city government and law enforcement authorities organized in Northern Italy in the 17th century?

How was it all actually working there, in the dark 16xx-s? Who was the major of a town, what was his duties and capabilities? How were laws issued? How was organized the analog of police: a city ...
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1answer
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Did Amadeo Bordiga tell off Stalin this way?

I read somewhere that Amadeo Bordiga, Italian Communist, said something along these lines to Stalin's face: If the Soviet Union is the homeland of all proletarians and the revolution, then let it ...
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1answer
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Did any of these artists ever meet?

Leonardo da Vinci, Michaelangelo, Raffaello Sanzio da Urbino (Raphael) and Donato Bardi (Donatello) are some of the most prominent and influential artists of the Renaissance period. Three of the four (...
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1answer
284 views

Did Italian irredentists ever lay claim to the Swiss Canton of Tessin?

The Italian irredentists wanted all Italian-speaking regions to be annexed by Italy, most specifically parts of Austria-Hungary, and this is why Italy joined the entente during the Great War, in order ...
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3answers
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What do Florence, Genoa, Milan and Venice have in common?

This building, located in Genoa, Italy, displays the emblems of four cities: from left to right Florence, Genoa, Milan, Venice. It is currently an university building, but I don't know how long it ...
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Did Mussolini know that Hitler was going to attack Poland?

Did Hitler inform Mussolini of his decision to attack Poland in advance? Was Mussolini in favour?
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Was Islam really responsible for the Italian Renaissance?

I recently heard a big claim from a Muslim, that the Italian Renaissance was largely caused by the positive Islamic influence on Europe via Spain or Al Andalus. I have my doubts about this claim, ...
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Why was Villa Gaggia chosen as the setting for Hitler & Mussolini's July 1943 meeting?

Ian Kershaw's Hitler biography Nemesis describes Hitler's hurriedly arranged summit with Mussolini in July 1943: After landing at Treviso, Hitler and Mussolini travelled in the Duce's train to a ...
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Why would Cavour ally with France instead of any enemy of Austria that wasn't looking to grab Nice and Savoy?

In 1858 during Italian unification, the Prime Minister of Sardinia-Piedmont, Cavour, entered into an alliance with France. In return for French aid against Austria, Cavour ceded Savoy and Nice to ...
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Rulers' titles in Middle Age Italy

For centuries in the Middle Ages, in many regions of Europe there were not kings, but dukes, archdukes, etc. For instance, in Italy one had the Archduke of Tuscany and the Duke of Piedmont (until 1720)...
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In 1861, few Italians spoke Italian?

The Economist claims Italy was created by a small elite at a time when more than 90% of the peninsula’s inhabitants did not speak Italian. (Source: Special Report on Italy, June 11th, 2011, p. 3) ...
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The riddle of Marco's Millions

The question is asked in the context of theories about the use of 'millions' or 'milioni' in association with Marco Polo and the reason for the use of the word as the Italian title for his book, known ...
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What currently existing IT companies collaborated with Nazi Germany or Fascist Italy?

I am aware that IBM has designed the tabulator machines to calculate information dealing with the extermination of Jews, but are there any other currently existing corporations which have helped Nazi ...
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Why did France make an alliance with the Kingdom of Sardinia-Piedmont in the 1850's?

It is clear why Cavour wanted the alliance, but what benefits would France have from allying itself to a relatively weak (as far as I know) kingdom?
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Was the Italian campaign a strategic mistake?

Background In September 1943, the Allied forces invaded Southern Italy in combined airborne/amphibious operations in Reggio di Calabria (Operation Baytown), Salerno (Operation Avalanche) and Taranto (...
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805 views

Did the Socialist and the Fascist party share the electoral programme in Italy?

I was taught that in the early twenties the Socialist and the Fascist parties programmes were more or less identical, except for just one nationalist clause in the Fascist party's programme. Despite ...
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Did France & Italy continue to develop and manufacture sophisticated military hardware once under German control?

Both France and Italy were designing and building advanced vehicle engines, motorcyles, aero engines and airframes through the 1930s and early 1940s. In the case of those advanced economies of ...