Take a PTE Academic test in or nearby Italy
Get to know the most favored universities and programmes to study abroad in Italy.
Facts about Italy:
Trying to stay far away from clichés and prejudices, let’s try and get a deeper understanding of Italy and what it stands for.
For instance, the name Italy comes from the word italia, which means “land of calves” or “calf land”, which is, automatically, adorable. Scholars assume that this name was inspired by the symbol of the Southern Italian tribes, which was a bull.
And that might be the only moderate fact about Italy we can find. Everything else is plagued by how passionate and proud the Italians are, seeing how:
- At the opening of McDonald's in 1986, in Rome, food purists gave away free spaghetti in front of the restaurant, so they could remind people of their culinary heritage;
- They call football fans tifosi, meaning people infected with typhoid. This name started after they saw that soccer was treated more like a religion in Italy, not just a simple past-time hobby;
- The fork grew in popularity in Europe after it was first imported to Italy. Why was it that famous? Because it was the best utensil to eat spaghetti… No, I am not joking!
- In Milan, it’s illegal not to smile, unless you are in a hospital or at a funeral. Can I get a psychotically friendly hallelujah?
Also, you should know a bit about their folklore and superstitions, before going and settling in Italy. Some of the most famous ones are:
- The cursed number 17: it’s common for hotels not to have the 17th floor, seeing how the number is believed to be unlucky. It’s a bit of a stretch, but, apparently, 17, or XVII, can be rearranged in VIXI, which loosely translates to “I have lived”, and it’s often associated with death;
- Putting a hat on a bed: this one is much more grounded in reality and the horrible aftermaths of the plague or the other diseases that haunted Italy. Legend has it that, when you’re on your deathbed, a priest will come for your final rites, and he would remove his hat and place it on the bed, next to you;
- Sardinian islands have witches: the women use a secret language that they pass on to their daughters, along with recipes for health potions;
- Vatican is the only nation in the world allowed to lock its gates at night;
And, although it isn’t a superstition, you should still know that Whatsapp is cited in nearly half of the Italian divorce proceedings.
10 most popular study destinations for students in Italy
1. United Kingdom
5. United States