Related topics: europe · spain

The origin and legacy of the Etruscans

The Etruscan civilization, which flourished during the Iron Age in central Italy, has intrigued scholars for millennia. With remarkable metallurgical skills and a now-extinct, non-Indo-European language, the Etruscans stood ...

Three-city patent court gets nod from EU leaders

(Phys.org) -- A one-stop panEuropean patent court system with functions divided among three cities is now in the wings, bringing Europe a new day for a single European patent system. After a decision left dangling over arguments ...

Discovery of bronzes rewrites Italy's Etruscan-Roman history

Italian authorities on Tuesday announced the extraordinary discovery of 2,000-year-old bronze statues in an ancient Tuscan thermal spring and said the find will "rewrite history" about the transition from the Etruscan civilization ...

Black death mortality not as widespread as believed

The black death, which plagued Europe, West Asia and North Africa from 1347 to 1352, is the most infamous pandemic in history. Historians have estimated that up to 50 percent of Europe's population died during the pandemic ...

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Italy

Italy /ˈɪtəli/ (help·info) (Italian: Italia), officially the Italian Republic (Italian: Repubblica Italiana), is a country located on the Italian Peninsula in Southern Europe and on the two largest islands in the Mediterranean Sea, Sicily and Sardinia. Italy shares its northern, Alpine boundary with France, Switzerland, Austria and Slovenia. The independent states of San Marino and the Vatican City are enclaves within the Italian Peninsula, and Campione d'Italia is an Italian exclave in Switzerland.

The land known as Italy today has been the cradle of many European cultures and peoples, such as the Etruscans and the Romans, and later was the birthplace of the University, the Renaissance that began in Tuscany and spread all over Europe, Vitruvian Man, modern science and astronomy, heliocentrism and opera. Italy's capital, Rome, was for centuries the center of Western civilization. Italy possessed a colonial empire from the second half of the nineteenth century to the mid-twentieth century.

Today, Italy is a democratic republic and a developed country with the eighth-highest quality of life index rating in the world. It is a founding member of what is now the European Union, having signed the Treaty of Rome in 1957, and it is a founding member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). It is a member of the G8, having the world's seventh-largest nominal GDP, and is also a member state of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Council of Europe, the Western European Union, and the Central European Initiative. Italy is a Schengen state. It has the world's seventh-largest defence budget and shares NATO's nuclear weapons. On 1 January 2007, Italy began a two-year term as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council.

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