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Archive for the 'Italian Holidays' Category

Festa dei Lavoratori: Celebrating Labor Day in Italy

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Italians celebrate International Labor Day with fervor, flair, and food! In this article, you’ll learn about the history of Labor Day in Italy, what events Italians hold to celebrate, and more. While you read, compare Italian celebrations for Labor Day with those in your country!

Let’s get started.

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1. What is Labor Day?

Labor Day is about honoring workers around the world, celebrating economic and social gains workers have made, and demonstrating for even more rights and privileges.

In Italy, Labor Day began near the end of the 1800s, particularly with the protest for an eight-hour workday in 1886 in the United States. However, this holiday was suspended during the years of the fascist regime in the early 1900s, finally being restored in 1945, following WWII.

On Labor Day, Italy closes many businesses and schools, and most people get the day off of work. Depending on when May 1 is, Italians may also get an entire Labor Day weekend to rest and enjoy themselves.

2. When is Labor Day in Italy?

Labor Day is on May 1

Each year, Italians celebrate Labor Day on May 1 (primo maggio). This is the same date that International Labor Day is celebrated around the world, except in the United States, where it takes place on the first Monday of September.

3. How Do They Celebrate Labor Day in Italy?

A Woman Raising a Glass of Wine at an Outdoor Lunch with Friends

On Labor Day, Italians celebrate with concerts, parades, picnics, or a relaxing time at home.

A popular celebration for Labor Day in Rome, Italy, is the concerto a San Giovanni, or “concert in San Giovanni.” Approximately half of all citizens in Rome attend this massive concert—which features both Italian and international artists, and lasts several hours—and people outside the city andare a Roma per il concerto, or “go to Rome for the concert.” This concert is sponsored by CGIL, CISL, and UIL, which are Italian labor unions.

Many people also enjoy the opportunity to festeggiare con gli amici, or “party with friends.” This often involves lots of good food and wine, sometimes consumed during a picnic all’aperto, or “outdoor picnic.”

Other people spend this time with their families, go to the beach, or simply stay at home and relax the entire day!

4. Workers’ Rights in Italy

Here are just a few modern-day Italian employee rights.

  • Every person has the right to work and is guaranteed paid holidays.
  • Each week, a worker is required to take one day off for every six they work.
  • Women are paid eighty percent of their salary for a five-month maternity leave period (two months before childbirth and three after).

Interested in learning more about working in Italy? ItalianPod101.com has an entire article about How to Find a Job in Italy!

5. Must-Know Vocabulary for Labor Day

An Up-Close Shot of an Orchestra Playing at a Concert

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words from this lesson? Here’s a list of the most important words and phrases for Labor Day in Italy!

  • Concerto — “Concert”
  • Festa dei Lavoratori — “Labor Day”
  • Primo maggio — “May 1”
  • Sindacato — “Labor union”
  • Concerto del primo maggio a Roma — “May 1 concert in Rome”
  • Andare a Roma — “Go to Rome”
  • Andare a Roma per il concerto — “Go to Rome for the concert”
  • Concerto a San Giovanni — “Concert in San Giovanni”
  • Picnic all’aperto — “Outdoor picnic”
  • Andare al mare — “Go to the sea”
  • Bere vino — “Drink wine”
  • Festeggiare con gli amici — “Party with friends”

To hear the pronunciation of each word and phrase, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to check out our Italian Labor Day vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about the Labor Day holiday in Italy with us, and that you took away some valuable information.

How do you celebrate Labor Day in your country? We look forward to hearing all about it in the comments!

If you’re interested in learning even more about Italian culture and society, check out the following pages on ItalianPod101.com:

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Happy Labor Day! 🙂

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Domenica delle Palme: Celebrating Palm Sunday in Italy

Celebrating Palm Sunday in Italy

Palm Sunday in Italy is a major occasion around the country, with many unique religious celebrations. In this article, you’ll learn the basics about Palm Sunday, Italian traditions for this holiday, and some relevant Italian vocabulary.

Let’s get started!

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1. What is Palm Sunday?

On Palm Sunday, Italian Christians celebrate Jesus’ entrance into Jerusalem as described in the Bible. According to the Bible, he entered riding a donkey and people from the city welcomed him by throwing down palm branches in his path. This took place exactly one week before his Resurrection from the dead, which is celebrated as Easter one week after Palm Sunday.

In Italy, Palm Sunday is also largely associated with plants, particularly the palm tree and olive branch.

2. When is Palm Sunday in Italy?

Closeup of an Olive Branch

The date of Palm Sunday varies each year, along with Lent and Easter. For your convenience, here’s a list of this holiday’s date for the next ten years:

  • 2020: April 5
  • 2021: March 28
  • 2022: April 10
  • 2023: April 2
  • 2024: March 24
  • 2025: April 13
  • 2026: March 29
  • 2027: March 21
  • 2028: April 9
  • 2029: March 25

3. How Does Italy Celebrate Palm Sunday?

A Palm Sunday Procession

There are many unique Palm Sunday traditions in Italy. One such tradition is that of attending the Mass and receiving a palm branch (ramo di palma) or olive branch (ramo d’ulivo) there. Usually, the branches are bundled together right outside the church. For the Mass, it’s common for a priest to knock on the church doors three times, which is a symbol of Christ’s entry into Jerusalem.

At around nine-thirty in the morning, the Pope visits St. Peter’s Square in Rome. In the square, there’s a procession of people carrying palm or olive branches, which leads to the steps of St. Peter’s Basilica where the Mass takes place. Over the duration of the procession, the Pope and other clergymen give a benedizione, or “blessing,” to those carrying the branches.

Throughout Italy, many people may celebrate Palm Sunday—and the entirety of Holy Week—with some nice, home-cooked dinners. Some examples of popular Italian Palm Sunday dinner items include stracciatella soup, lamb, and Italian Easter bread.

4. World Youth Day

Did you know that in Italy, Palm Sunday has also been deemed World Youth Day according to the Christian calendar?

Because of this, the Pope’s Palm Sunday message is often geared toward the youth of today and the problems they face as they relate to Christianity.

5. Essential Italian Palm Sunday Vocabulary

Holy Water

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words from this article? Here’s a list of the most important words and phrases for Palm Sunday!

  • Ramo — “Branch”
  • Palma — “Palm tree”
  • Benedizione — “Blessing”
  • Ramo di palma — “Palm branch”
  • Passione — “Passion”
  • Seconda domenica di passione — “Second Passion Sunday”
  • Acqua santa — “Holy water”
  • Ulivo — “Olive”
  • Ramo d’ulivo — “Olive branch”
  • Processione — “Procession”

To hear the pronunciation of each word, and to read them alongside relevant images, check out our Italian Palm Sunday vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about Italian Palm Sunday traditions with us, and that you took away some valuable cultural information.

Do you celebrate Palm Sunday in your country? If so, are celebrations similar or quite different from those in Italy? We look forward to hearing from you in the comments!

If you’re fascinated with Italian culture and can’t get enough, we recommend that you check out the following pages on ItalianPod101.com:

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We look forward to having you! 🙂

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Celebrating International Women’s Day in Italy

Giornata Internazionale della Donna, or International Women’s Day in Italy, is a major holiday celebrated throughout the country. In this article, you’ll learn how Italians honor the women in their lives and about the most common traditions for Women’s Day.

Let’s get started.

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1. What is International Women’s Day?

In Italy, International Women’s Day may not be a public holiday, but that doesn’t keep people from finding ways to honor the women in their lives. Essentially, International Women’s Day is a reminder of the “discrimination” (discriminazione) and “violence” (violenza) women have faced in the past, and a day to celebrate the higher social position women have today.

This festival was first celebrated in 1909 in the United States, while in Italy, it has only been celebrated since 1922. However, it was only after the end of World War II that this day became an important holiday. This is because, after the war, women could vote and have a political career for the first time in the history of Italy.

This greater sense of “equality” (uguaglianza) continues to call for celebration today, and in Italy, Women’s Day is observed with fervor throughout the country. In addition, women often fight for greater equality on Women’s Day.

2. When is Women’s Day?

A Woman Sitting with Her Arms on Top of a Desk

Each year, International Women’s Day is celebrated on March 8.

3. Women’s Day Traditions and Celebrations

Woman Smelling a Bouquet of Flowers

On International Women’s Day, Italy is abloom with love, appreciation, and respect for women. This is often done through gift-giving, of which sweets and flowers are common favorites.

Since 1946, the mimosa has been the symbol of the holiday, and today serves as the most popular Women’s Day flower in Italy. The mimosa is a yellow flower that grows in abundance throughout Italy, blooming in early March. Each year in Italy, Women’s Day flowers are available in all the shops and markets, which sell sprigs of mimosa that people then give as gifts to the women in their life.

As you know, Italians are very fond of sweets, and so naturally, there’s a typical dessert dedicated to celebrating Women’s Day. It’s called the mimosa cake, or torta mimosa. This cake is so named because it‘s yellow in color and it seems to be covered with mimosa flowers. In reality, it’s a sponge cake with whipped cream. Another favorite sweet for Women’s Day is “chocolate” (cioccolato).

4. Two Very Important Italian Women

In Italian history, there are two very notable women. Do you know who they are?

The first is Teresa Mattei, one of the first women in Italian politics. She’s the one who made mimosas the symbol of Women’s Day in 1946.

The second is an Italian woman who received the Nobel Prize for medicine in 1986. Her name was Rita Levi Montalcini, and she made important discoveries for the treatment of serious diseases such as cancer.

5. Must-Know Vocabulary for International Women’s Day

A Mimosa Flower

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words from this lesson? Here’s a list of the most important words and phrases for International Women’s Day in Italy!

  • Cioccolato — “Chocolate”
  • Donna — “Woman”
  • Mimosa — “Mimosa”
  • Parità — “Parity”
  • Diritto — “Right”
  • Uguaglianza — “Equality”
  • Torta mimosa — “Mimosa cake”
  • Giornata Internazionale della Donna — “International Women’s Day”
  • Violenza — “Violence”
  • Discriminazione — “Discrimination”

To hear the pronunciation of each word, and to read them alongside relevant images, check out our Italian International Women’s Day vocabulary list!

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about Women’s Day in Italy with us! Does your country celebrate International Women’s Day, or honor women some other way? Let us know in the comments!

If you’re fascinated with Italian culture and can’t get enough, be sure to check out the following pages on ItalianPod101.com:

Whatever your reasons for developing an interest in Italian culture or the language, know that ItalianPod101.com is the best way to expand your knowledge and improve your skills. With tons of fun and immersive lessons for learners at every level, there’s something for everyone!

Create your free lifetime account today, and start learning with us.

Felice Giornata Internazionale della Donna! (“Happy International Women’s Day!” in Italian) from the ItalianPod101 family.

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Epifania: The Feast of the Epiphany in Italy

Italians celebrate the Feast of the Epiphany each year to celebrate the Magi’s visitation to Baby Jesus. However, the celebrations of Epiphany in Italy may surprise you—did you know that Epiphany isn’t what most Italians call this holiday?

In this article, you’ll learn about the origins of the Epiphany holiday and how the Italians observe it.

At ItalianPod101.com, it’s our goal to ensure that every aspect of your language-learning journey is both fun and informative—starting with this article!

Ready? Let’s dive in.

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1. What is Epiphany in Italy?

Epiphany, like Christmas, is a Christian religious festival. It celebrates the visit made by the Magi—the three great kings of the East—to Christ twelve days after his birth. This festival is a national holiday.

For Italians, the Epiphany is also a bit of a sad day, because it is the fine del Natale, or “end of Christmas.” Thus, while the Epiphany celebrations are going on, Italians are also bracing themselves for the humdrum of everyday life to begin again.

2. Epiphany Date

Each year, Italians celebrate Epiphany on January 6. The night before is called Epiphany Eve.

3. How Do They Celebrate Epiphany in Italy?

Go to Mass

While, like in most countries that celebrate Epiphany, many Italians andare a messa, or “go to mass,” the more popular traditions may surprise you. 😉

1- The Legend of La Befana

According to an Italian belief, on the night between January 5 and 6, a vecchia signora, or “old woman,” called Befana—who’s ugly and old and rides on a broomstick—goes into every home to fill the socks of the good children (bambini buoni) with candies and sweets, and distribute coal to the bad children (bambini cattivi). The kids really like this celebration of the Epiphany, because even if they get a bit of coal, they still always receive a lot of candies and chocolates. This belief also explains why the Epiphany is more commonly known as the Day of the Befana.

In Venice, the Befana travels on a boat! In fact, every year, on January 6, a boat race of the Befana is organized, led by athletes dressed as Befana, who compete on the Grand Canal.

2- More Epiphany Traditions

On this day, after opening the socks filled with candy (caramella), Italians get together with their families to enjoy lunch together. The most typical food eaten on Epiphany in Italy is sweets, including focaccia of the Epiphany. This is a cake that has a fava bean placed inside it; the one who finds this dry bean will have very good fortune throughout the year. The afternoon of this day is also an opportunity to go out for a walk around the historic centers of the city, where there are small markets selling sweets.

During the Epiphany Festival, Italy’s most common activity is actually to take away all the Christmas decorations, such as the Christmas tree and the nativity scene. This is because Epiphany marks the official end of Christmastime.

4. Origin of “Epiphany”

Do you know the meaning and origin of the word “epiphany”?

It is a word with Greek origins that means “appearance” or “revelation.” Some people also celebrate Epiphany as the day on which the Trinity of God was “revealed” during the baptism of Jesus, thus the holiday’s name.

5. Must-Know Vocabulary for Epiphany in Italy

Sweet Coal

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words we went over in this article? Here’s the essential Italian vocabulary for Epiphany!

  • Caramella — “Candy”
  • Epifania — “Epiphany”
  • Andare a messa — “Go to mass”
  • Carbone dolce — “Sweet coal
  • Calza — “Stocking”
  • Vecchia signora — “Old woman”
  • Magi — “Magi”
  • Regalo — “Gift”
  • Fine del Natale — “End of Christmas”
  • Scopa — “Broomstick”
  • Befana — “Befana”
  • Bambino cattivo — “Bad child”
  • Bambino buono — “Good child”

To hear each of these vocabulary words pronounced, and to read them alongside relevant images, be sure to check out our Italian Epiphany vocabulary list.

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about the Feast of Epiphany in Italy with us!

Do you celebrate Epiphany in your country? If so, are celebrations similar or different from those in Italy? Let us know in the comments!

If you’re interested in learning more about Italian culture, or if you want some wintery words up your sleeve to get you through the next couple of months, you may find the following pages useful:

Italian is a beautiful language, and learning it doesn’t need to be boring or overwhelming. With ItalianPod101.com, it can even be fun! If you’re serious about mastering the language, create your free lifetime account today.

Happy Italian learning! 🙂

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Giorno Dell’unità Nazionale: National Unity Day in Italy

WWI Depiction

Each year, Italy observes its National Unity and Armed Forces Day in commemoration of its victory in WWI while part of the Allies. While this is no longer considered a public holiday, Italy’s National Unity Day still holds some relevance to the Italian people, who continue to put on celebrations and special events.

In this article, you’ll learn the most pertinent facts about National Unity Day and Armed Forces Day in Italy.

At ItalianPod101.com, we hope to make every aspect of your learning journey both fun and informative!

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1. What is National Unity Day in Italy?

As mentioned earlier, National Unity Day and Armed Forces Day in Italy commemorates the country’s WWI victory. Following this victory, Italy also conquered Trento and Trieste which began the process of its unification.

Beginning in the 1970s, Italian Armed Forces and Unity Day started to fall off the radar and the Italian people no longer considered this an important day. During the 1960s, many Italians actually protested this holiday in order to draw attention to the lack of conscientious objection rights which would allow them to refuse military service.

In spite of this holiday’s declining status and the growing stigma around it, Italians did once again start to accept it in the 2000s. This was largely due to the influence of then-President Carolo Ciampi.

2. When is it?

Italian Flag

Each year, Italians commemorate their National Unity Day and Armed Forces Day on November 4.

3.How is it Celebrated?

Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

On National Unity Day, Italy begins celebrations by hoisting its national flag. Italian mayors and those serving in the military are present during this ceremony, and people are able to watch weaponry and martial arts demonstrations.

Further celebrations include solemn visits to the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier for the wreath-laying ceremony, and Vittorio Veneto, both of which hold significant meaning to the Italian people. The Vittorio Veneto is where Italy and Austria-Hungary fought their final battle of WWI. Another popular destination for National Unity Day is the Redipuglia Memorial Monument, a place devoted to honoring the many Italians who lost their lives there.

4. The Italian Front

WWI Depiction

In 1915, Italy decided to leave its Triple Alliance with the countries of Germany and Austria-Hungary, and instead joined the other side. After declaring war on Austria-Hungary, Italy officially became involved in WWI.

The two countries fought many battles up until 1918, which were known as the Italian Front. The same year, the Armistice of Villa Gusti was signed at the prompting of Austria-Hungary, and Italians celebrate this each year.

5. Essential National Unity and Armed Forces Day Vocabulary

Fallen Italian Soldiers

Here’s the essential vocabulary you should know for National Unity and Armed Forces Day in Italy!

  • Anniversario
    “Anniversary”
  • Prima Guerra Mondiale
    “World War I”
  • Giorno dell’Unità Nazionale
    “National Unity Day”
  • Giornata delle Forze Armate
    “Armed Forces Day”
  • Anniversario della fine della prima guerra mondiale
    “Anniversary of the end of World War I”
  • Milite Ignoto
    “Tomb of the Unknown Soldier”
  • Celebrazione all’Altare della Patria
    “Celebration at the Altar of the Fatherland”
  • Vittoriano di Roma
    “Vittoriano in Rome”
  • Visita al Sacrario di Redipuglia
    “Visit to the Redipuglia Memorial Monument”
  • Visita a Vittorio Veneto
    “Visit to Vittorio Veneto”
  • Riconoscenza
    “Gratitude”
  • Caduti militari italiani
    “Fallen Italian soldiers”

To hear each of these vocabulary words pronounced, and to see each one accompanied by a relevant image, be sure to check out our Italian National Unity Day and Armed Forces Day vocabulary list!

Parting Words

We hope you enjoyed learning about National Unity Day and Armed Forces Day in Italy with us!

Does your country have a similar holiday? If so, how do you celebrate it? Let us know in the comments; we always love to hear from you!

Learning about a country’s culture may be the most exciting and enriching aspects of trying to master a language. If you want to continue delving into Italian culture, you may be interested in the following pages:

We know that learning Italian isn’t an easy feat. But at ItalianPod101.com, we believe that you really can master the language and come to understand Italian culture. We’ll be here with you every step of the way with constant guidance and encouragement!

Happy learning!

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Ferragosto Festa Nazionale: Celebrating Ferragosto in Italy

What is the Italian holiday Ferragosto? The name may sound a bit odd, as it refers to the month the holiday takes place in (August), and not the holiday itself. Simply put, Ferragosto is Italy’s version of the Assumption celebration, which commemorates the assumption of the Virgin Mary into Heaven.

At ItalianPod101.com, we hope to make learning about the Italian Ferragosto holiday both fun and informative, as we peel back layers of Italy’s unique culture and its religious traditions. After all, this is key in truly mastering any language!

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1. What is Ferragosto?

Ferragosto is the Italian word for the mid-August holiday, and this is the festival of the Assumption of Mary. That is, the day when, according to the Catholic religion, we celebrate the passage of Mary, the Madonna, from earth to Heaven.

The Assumption of Mary is a Catholic holiday, but its origins are Roman, as evidenced by the name Ferragosto, which in Latin means “resting of Augustus,” and signifies a feast that was held by the Emperor Augustus. One can say that today, in Italy, both Roman and Catholic traditions are present, but changes have nevertheless occurred since the time of their origin.

2. When is Ferragosto?

Fireworks Going Off

Each year, Italians celebrate Ferragosto on August 15. Because of its particular date, the Ferragosto holiday is also associated with the end of summer, and the coming of autumn and winter. Read below to learn how Italians make the most of their final days of warm summer sun!

3. Ferragosto Traditions in Italy

Woman With Feet Out Car Window

On Ferragosto, Roma and all the rest of Italy celebrate with good food, games, and a procession to commemorate the Virgin Mary.

The festivities that take place in Trappeto—a small Sicilian village—are linked to the Catholic tradition. Every year, on August 15, the statue of Madonna is put on a boat. For a typical procession at sea, the boat with the statue is dragged through the entire coastline of the country and believers follow it.

There are other customs, such as horse racing, which have a pagan origin instead. One of the most famous races is the “Palio of Siena.”

Italians, wherever they are, like to meet their friends to celebrate the summer and go outdoors to eat Ferragosto food together. It’s especially popular to organize picnics with large barbecues of meat and vegetables. Consuming large amounts of watermelon is also a must!

In addition, the resort areas hold special tournaments, such as the Greasy Pole. Here, Italians hang culinary delicacies atop a pole, which serve as the prize for the one who’s able to climb the pole fastest. But, as the name suggests, the pole is greased!

4. A Midnight Swim

Do you know how most Italian guys celebrate the Ferragosto holiday?

They gather in groups of friends on August 14, in the evening, and go to the beach together. At midnight, the ritual is to take a dip together.

5. Vocabulary You Should Know for Ferragosto

People swimming at Night

Here’s some vocabulary you should know for Ferragosto in Italy!

  • Grigliata — “Barbecue”
  • Picnic — “Picnic”
  • Andare in spiaggia — “Go to the beach”
  • Andare a messa — “Go to mass”
  • Viaggio — “Trip”
  • Piccione arrostito — “Roast pigeon”
  • Cestino da picnic — “Picnic basket”
  • Bagno di mezzanotte — “Midnight swim”
  • Fuoco d’artificio — “Firework
  • Falò — “Bonfire”
  • Ferragosto — “Ferragosto”
  • Festa — “Party”

To hear each of these vocabulary words pronounced, check out our Ferragosto vocabulary list! Here, you’ll also find relevant images accompanying each word to help maximize your memorization!

Conclusion

We hope you enjoyed learning about Ferragosto with us! Does your country have Assumption Day celebrations, too? If so, what are they like? Let us know in the comments!

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Republic Day in Italy: Tomb of the Unknown Soldier & More

Do you know that when Italy was founded in 1861, monarchy prevailed in the country? It remained this way until the June of 1946, when Italians decided to ditch the monarchy government system and become a republic instead. Not long after, the Italian Constitution was made in 1948.

Each year, Italians celebrate Republic Day in commemoration of their newfound republic status.

In learning about Festa della Repubblica (Republic Day in Italy), you’re allowing yourself a broader understanding of Italian culture and its history. As any language learner can tell you, this is a vital step in language mastery.

At ItalianPod101.com, we hope to make it both fun and informative! Learn about the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, Italian parades, and the Italian Constitution with us, as we delve into the Republic Day of Italy!

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1. What is Republic Day in Italy?

Italy was originally a monarchy; in fact, its unification was commissioned by the Savoia family, a noble family of Piemontesi origin. From 1861, for nearly ninety years in Italy, both the king and the parliament co-existed.

Unfortunately, the Savoia family was not much loved by the Italians, especially because they never opposed the fascist dictatorship, and during the Second World War, they left the army and the people without any guidance. In 1946, not only the monarchy was abolished, but the Savoia were also sent into exile outside Italy, until 2002.

2. When is Republic Day in Italy?

Someone Holding Paper in Front of Italian Flag

After World War II ended, there were elections and the Italians decided to abolish the monarchy and became a republic. That day was June 2, 1946 and today it is the Republic Day.

3. Reading Practice: How is Italy’s Republic Day Celebrated?

A Parade

On Republic Day, Italy observes a few fascinating traditions and celebrations. Read the Italian text below to find out, and then read the English translation directly below it.

Anche il 2 giugno, come il 25 aprile, si festeggia con una cerimonia a Roma presso l’Altare della Patria, a cui partecipa il Presidente della Repubblica. Con questa festa si ricorda anche il cosidetto “miracolo economico italiano,” cioè la veloce ripresa economica dell’Italia dopo i cinque lunghi anni della guerra mondiale. Anche se l’Italia aveva perso la guerra e molte città erano state distrutte dai bombardamenti aerei, tutto cambiò velocemente e il tenore di vita migliorò in poco tempo.

Un evento particolarmente interessante del 2 giugno è l’apertura speciale del Palazzo del Quirinale a Roma. Il Palazzo del Quirinale è uno dei monumenti piu’ belli di Roma, ma e’ anche la casa del Presidente della Repubblica. E’ un palazzo del sedicesimo secolo e fu il palazzo del re fino al 1945, le sue sale e i suoi giardini sono bellissimi e chi riesce a visitarli è molto fortunato.

June 2, like April 25, is celebrated with a ceremony in Rome at the Altar of the Fatherland, which is attended by the President of Italy. With this festival, people also remember the so-called “Italian economic miracle,” the recovery of the economy of Italy after the five long years of World War II. Although Italy had lost the war and many cities were destroyed by aerial bombings, everything changed quickly and the standard of living improved in a short span of time.

A particularly interesting event of June 2 is the special opening of the Quirinale Palace in Rome. The Quirinale Palace is one of the most beautiful monuments in Rome, but also serves as the residence of the President. It is a building from the sixteenth century and was the king’s palace until 1945; its rooms and gardens are very beautiful, and those who manage to see them are considered very lucky.

4. Additional Republic Day Celebrations & Traditions

1- Tri-color Air Show

One of the most beautiful events of this day is definitely that of the Tricolor Air Show, which is when some Italian army aircraft create the Italian flag in the sky with amazing aerobatics and colored smoke.

In the same vein, do you know in which city the “tricolor,” the national flag of Italy was created?

The “tricolor,” green-white-red, was created in Reggio Emilia in 1797, long before Italy was unified.

2- What is The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

While the Tomb of the Unknown soldier didn’t originate in Italy, it is one of a few countries to have a tomb dedicated to soldiers lost in war who were unidentified.

In Italy, this tomb is called the Vittorio Emanuele II Monument, mentioned above, and it’s a significant aspect of the Italian National Day (as it is for numerous other important Italian holidays). In a sense, it represents Italy’s struggle to reaching its republic status as a country. It also embodies all of the losses before and after.

5. Useful Vocabulary for Italy’s Republic Day

Tricolor Arrows

Here’s some vocabulary you should know for Republic Day in Italy!

  • Roma — “Rome”
  • Repubblica — “Republic”
  • Costituzione — “Constitution”
  • Parata — “Parade”
  • Tomba del Milite Ignoto — “Tomb of the Unknown Soldier”
  • Tricolore — “Tricolor”
  • Promulgare — “Promulgate”
  • Frecce Tricolori — “Tricolor Arrows”
  • Altare della Patria — “Altar of the Fatherland”
  • Rendere omaggio — “Pay homage”
  • Ghirlanda d’alloro — “Laurel garland”

To hear each vocabulary word pronounced, check out our Italian Republic Day vocabulary list. Here, each word is listed alongside an audio file of its pronunciation.

Conclusion

What do you think of Italy’s Republic Day and its celebrations? How does your country celebrate its Republic Day? Let us know in the comments!

To learn more about Italian culture and the language, visit us at ItalianPod101.com and see all we have to offer the Italian learner, regardless of their current level. Read more insightful blog posts like this one, hone your word knowledge with our free vocabulary lists, and discuss lessons with fellow students on our community forums! You can also upgrade to a Premium Plus account to take advantage of our MyTeacher program, and learn Italian with your own personal teacher.

Know that your determination will pay off, and you’ll be speaking Italian like a native before you know it! Best wishes!

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La Pasquetta: Easter Monday in Italy

Have you ever received a chocolate egg as a gift? For Italians, the chocolate egg is a symbol of Easter, which is the most important festival in Christianity. The Monday after Easter (Easter Monday), in particular, is a holiday of celebration on a grand scale. In this lesson, we’ll go over Italian Easter traditions and more facts about Easter in Italy.

At ItalianPod101.com, we hope to make learning about Italian culture both fun and informative!

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1. What is Easter Monday in Italy?

Easter Monday celebrates the resurrection of Christ three days after his death, and is one of the most significant Christian holidays. As we’ll see in this lesson, Easter is very important in Italy. It’s also a national holiday and corresponds with the spring holidays.

2. When is it?

Easter Eggs and Flowers

The date of Easter Monday in Italy varies from year to year. For your convenience, here’s a list of this holiday’s date for the next ten years.

  • 2019: April 22
  • 2020: April 13
  • 2021: April 5
  • 2022: April 18
  • 2023: April 10
  • 2024: April 1
  • 2025: April 21
  • 2026: April 6
  • 2027: March 29
  • 2028: April 17

3. Reading Practice: How is Easter in Italy Celebrated?

Family Having a Picnic Together

How is Easter celebrated in Italy? Find out by reading the French text below (you can find the English translation directly below it).

Nella maggior parte delle case italiane il giorno di Pasqua si organizza un grande pranzo con amici e parenti. Secondo la tradizione con la Pasqua finisce un lungo periodo di digiuno, quindi ogni piatto è particolarmente ricco, come la pizza di Pasqua, che è una grossa torta al formaggio dell’Italia centrale o l’agnello al forno con le patate e i carciofi. Ovviamente non bisogna dimenticare le uova di Pasqua, le uova sono un simbolo di vita e rinascita; oggi sono fatte di cioccolato, ma in passato venivano usate uova vere, con il guscio decorato.

Il giorno dopo la Pasqua è detto il Lunedì di Pasqua, detto anche Pasquetta, e anche questo è un giorno di vacanza nazionale. Per tutti gli Italiani il Lunedì di Pasqua è un’ottima occasione per uscire di casa e andare a fare un picnic in campagna o andare a visitare qualche famosa città d’arte. Per esempio uno dei luoghi più belli in cui molti italiani si recano per fare il picnic è il bosco di San Francesco, in Umbria, ad Assisi.

In Italia quando qualcuno fa delle grandi pulizie si dice che fa le “pulizie di Pasqua” – infatti tradizionalmente prima della Pasqua, in rispetto di Cristo e per accogliere la nuova stagione, bisognava pulire la casa da cima a fondo.

In most Italian homes, a grand lunch is organized with family and friends on Easter Day. According to traditions, Easter marks the end of a long period of fasting, so every dish is very rich, such as the Easter pizza, which is a large cheese pie from central Italy, or roast lamb with potatoes and artichokes. Of course, we must not forget the Easter eggs, because eggs are a symbol of life and rebirth. Today they are made of chocolate, but in the past, real eggs with decorated shells were used.

The day after Easter is called Easter Monday, or Little Easter, and it is also a national holiday. For all Italians, Easter Monday is an excellent opportunity to leave their homes and go out for a picnic in the countryside or visit some famous cities of art. For example, one of the most beautiful places Italians go for picnics is the forest of St. Francis, in Assisi, Umbria.

In Italy, when someone does a lot of cleaning, they call it “spring-cleaning”; in fact, in the past it was traditional to respect Christ and to welcome the new season by cleaning the house before Easter.

4. Easter Symbols in Italy: Olive Tree

Do you know which tree symbolizes Easter in Italy?

It’s the olive tree, which is usually distributed to Catholic churches on Palm Sunday, a week before Easter, as a symbol of peace.

5. Must-know Vocab

Easter Dove Cake

Here’s some vocabulary you should know for Easter Monday in Italy!

  • Picnic — “Picnic”
  • Grigliata — “Barbeque”
  • Lunedì dell’Angelo — “Angel Monday”
  • Gita all’aria aperta — “Open-air day trip”
  • Campagna — “Countryside”
  • Scampagnata — “Countryside excursion
  • Fuori porta — “Out-of-town”
  • Colomba di Pasqua — “Easter Dove cake”
  • Frittata — “Omelet”
  • Asparagi — “Asparagus”

To hear each word pronounced, check out our Italian Easter Monday vocabulary list. Here, you’ll find each word accompanied by an audio of its pronunciation.

Conclusion

What do you think of Easter in Italy? Are Easter celebrations similar (or different) in your country? Let us know in the comments!

To learn more about Italian culture and the language, visit us at ItalianPod101.com. We offer an array of insightful blog posts, free vocabulary lists, and an online community where you can discuss lessons with other Italian learners. By creating a Premium Plus account, you can also take advantage of our MyTeacher program, and learn Italian with your own personal Italian teacher!

All of your determination and hard work will pay off, and before you know it, you’ll be speaking Italian like a native. ItalianPod101.com will be here with effective learning materials—and tons of support—throughout your language-learning journey.

Best wishes, and Buona Pasqua (Happy Easter in Italian)! Enjoy some Italian Easter cookies, Italian Easter bread, and Italian Easter pie for us! 😉

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Carnevale: How to Celebrate the Carnival Season in Italy

In Italian, it is said that “anything goes during Carnival.”

Some countries simply feast to their heart’s content during Carnival, the holiday just before the Lent period of fasting. Others participate in lots of dancing. Some countries hold to more religious celebrations.

But in Italy, this is a time of Masquerades and rule-breaking—in addition to feasting and other merry activities.

Let ItalianPod101.com show you all the unique facets of Italy’s Carnevale!

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1. What is Italian Carnival?

Many aspects of the the content and nature of the current Carnival—such as Saturnalia—can be easily traced back to their ancient Roman origins. As for the etymology of the word Carnival, it most likely derives from the Latin expression carne levare, which means “eliminate the meat.” This makes reference to the religious practice of abstaining from meat during the period of Lent.

During the Carnival, Italy allows everyone to eat at will, and above all, break the rules, while wearing a mask (maschera). The Italy Carnival season is truly a unique feature of the country’s culture, and in this article you’ll learn how Carnival is celebrated in Italy.

2. Italian Carnevale Date

Single Mask

The date of Carnival in Italy varies each year, as it depends on the date of Easter. For your convenience, here’s this holiday’s date for the next ten years:

  • 2019: March 4
  • 2020: February 24
  • 2021: February 15
  • 2022: January 31
  • 2023: February 20
  • 2024: February 12
  • 2025: March 3
  • 2026: February 16
  • 2027: February 8
  • 2028: February 28

3. How is it Celebrated?

Clown Float

Today in Italy, this holiday is primarily a festival for children, but Carnival in Italy’s history
was a festival especially for adults. The rule of the Carnival is that you have to break the rules and do everything that is normally prohibited during the year. This is where the custom of masquerade originates—so that those who break the rules cannot be recognized.

The typical dishes of Carnival are sweets, one of the most popular being the chiacchiere made of sugar-coated fried pastry.

In Italy, there are various mask traditions that began many centuries ago and are well-known all over the world today.

Among the most famous is Harlequin, a mask from Bergamo, and Pulcinella, a typical mask of Naples. Both Harlequin and Punchinello represent clever servants, always ready to play a joke on their master. Both of these masked men are the symbols of the revenge of the servants on their masters.

Even though the Carnival takes place in winter, there are many events that are held outdoors. Italians, both adults and children, are very fond of attending the parades of the allegorical wagons, which are huge papier-mâché wagons representing traditional masked men or famous public figures in an ironic manner.

However, the Carnival of Venice may be the most famous of the Italy Carnevales, because of its particular beauty and the sophistication of its masked men, of which everyone has seen a picture at least once.

4. Reading Practice: Oranges!

Read the Italian text below to learn about another fascinating aspect of Carnevale in Italy (you can find the English translation directly below it).

—–

Sapete perche’ a Carnevale piu’ di duecentocinquantamila chili di arance vengono portati nella citta’ di Ivrea, in provincia di Torino?

Perche’ tra i riti del Carnevale c’e’ anche la battaglia delle arance, durante la quale i partecipanti si tirano le arance addosso.

—–
Do you know why, during Carnival, more than 250 kilos of oranges are brought into the city of Ivrea, in the province of Turin?
It’s because one of the rituals of the Carnival is the battle of the oranges, during which the participants throw oranges at each other.

5. Must-know Vocab

Harlequin Costume

Here’s some vocabulary you should know for Carnival Season in Italy!

  • Carnevale — “Carnival”
  • Maschera — “Mask”
  • Costume — “Costume”
  • Scherzo — “Joke”
  • Festa — “Celebration”
  • Mascherarsi — “Cloak”
  • Arlecchino — “Harlequin”
  • Chiacchiere — “Chiacchiere”
  • Carro allegorico — “Float”
  • Sfilata — “Parade”
  • Quaresima — “Lent”

If you want to hear each word’s pronunciation, visit our Italian Carnival vocabulary list. Here you’ll find each word accompanied by an audio of its pronunciation.

Conclusion

What do you think about Carnevale (and Italy’s Carnival masks)? Do you celebrate Carnival in your own country, or a similar holiday? Let us know in the comments!

To learn more about Italian culture and the language, visit us at ItalianPod101.com! We offer an array of insightful blog posts, free vocabulary lists, and an online community to discuss lessons with fellow Italian learners. You can also check out our MyTeacher program if you’re interested in a one-on-one learning experience with your own personal Italian teacher!

We hope you enjoyed learning about Carnival season in Italy with us. Continue delving into Italy’s culture and practicing your language skills, and you’ll be speaking like a native in no time!

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International Holocaust Remembrance Day in Italy

From 1943 to 1945, Nazism became more rampant in Italy as some parts of this country came under German occupation. Though the Holocaust in Italy isn’t talked about as widely as the Holocaust in other countries, there’s no doubt that Jews were indeed persecuted here and those seeking to defend them were greatly victimized.

For this reason, Italy holds a commemoration for all victims on International Holocaust Remembrance Day. This Italian Holocaust Day Remembrance is very significant to the Italian people and is a day of mournful reflection on the Italian Holocaust. Holocaust memorials in Italy are especially common in places like Rome, where Nazism became especially strong.

Learn more about Italy and the Holocaust with ItalianPod101.com!

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1. What is International Holocaust Remembrance Day?

In Italy, from 1943 to 1945, Jews began to face persecuzione (“persecution”) and deportazione (“deportation”) at the hands of Nazis. They became victims of Nazismo (“Nazism”) and their prigionia (“imprisonment”) in concentration and death camps was made possible as parts of Italy came under German occupation.

Up until 1943, parts of Italy were actually seen as a sort of refuge for Jews. That changed once Italy surrendered to Germany, and approximately 16% of Jews living in Italy during the next two years of persecution were killed.

Even in Italy there were a few concentration camps, and one of the best known is Fossoli in Emilia Romagna, which can still be visited today.

Italy and many other countries celebrate the Day of Remembrance (Giorno della Memoria) to commemorate the victims of Nazism and those who put their lives at risk to protect the persecuted.

2. When is International Holocaust Remembrance Day?

A Day for Remembrance

International Holocaust Remembrance Day takes place on January 27 each year.

January 27 was chosen as the symbolic date of the end of the Holocaust, because this is the day that, in 1945, the Auschwitz campo di concentramento (“concentration camp”) was liberated by the Russian army. The discovery of the Auschwitz camp was the first revelation to the world of the full horror of the Nazi genocide.

3. How is it Celebrated?

Celebrating International Holocaust Remembrance Day

On this day, special events are organized to remember those who lost their lives, especially in the Italian cities that were host to Nazi persecution, such as Rome, or places that are still home to Jewish communities.

For example, the Monument Museum of the Deportees of Carpi hosts an extraordinary exhibition almost every year. The Holocaust in Italy is commemorated with different artistic and literary testimonies as well, some of which we’ll discuss in the section below.

4. Additional Information

Undoubtedly, “If This is a Man,” (Se questo è un uomo) by Primo Levi is the representative symbolic novel of Holocaust literary testimonies. Primo Levi, a Jewish-Italian writer, lived through his deportation. As a survivor he committed himself to letting everyone know what happened in the Nazi labor camps and about the exterminations.

But it doesn’t end there. Among the more recent works dedicated to this tragedy is the movie “Life is Beautiful,” (La vita è bella) by Roberto Benigni, who skillfully portrayed the reality of the concentration camps while managing to bring a smile to viewers’ faces.

5. Must-Know Vocab for Italy’s International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Black and White Photo

To learn more about the history of the Holocaust in Italy, here’s some vocabulary for you to go over.

  • Memoria — “Remembrance”
  • Giornata della Memoria — “Remembrance Day”
  • Leggi razziali — “Racial laws”
  • Deportazione — “Deportation”
  • Fascismo — “Fascism”
  • Vittima — “Victim”
  • Nazismo — “Nazism”
  • Intolleranza — “Intolerance”
  • Persecuzione — “Persecution”
  • Prigionia — “Imprisonment”
  • Campo di concentramento — “Concentration camp”
  • Campo di sterminio — “Death camp”
  • Genocidio — “Genocide”
  • Liberazione — “Liberation”
  • Ricordo — “Memory”
  • Forno crematorio — “Crematory oven”

If you would like to hear each of these vocabulary words pronounced, be sure to visit our International Holocaust Remembrance Day vocab list for Italy! There’s an audio file with each word to help you practice your pronunciation!

Conclusion

Now you know more about Holocaust Memorial Day in Italy, as well as information about the Italian Holocaust. What do you think about the Holocaust memorials in Italy? Does your country commemorate International Holocaust Remembrance Day? Let us know in the comments!

For even more information about the Italian culture and language, be sure to visit us at ItalianPod101.com! We offer several vocabulary lists on a range of topics, as well as fun and informative blog posts. You can even talk about what you’re learning with fellow Italian learners in our online community, and get a one-on-one learning experience with our MyTeacher app!

Keep up the hard work and let us be your guide for all things Italian. What are your Italian language-learning goals? Whatever they are, there’s a place for you to plug in at ItalianPod101.com. Join, and speak like a native before you know it!