Italian Culture for Children – fun facts, food, music, language & Interesting facts about Italian Culture

Italian Food

Italian food is more than just Pasta and Pizza. In fact not only every region, but also every small village has its own very typical dishes, often made with ingredients that can be grown or found only in that area. From wild truffle sauce to wild pig salami sandwich, every little kiosk can be a pleasant surprise for your taste buds. And when the dinner is over, that´s is just the beginning because Gelato (ice cream) to go (in cones or little colourful buckets), cappuccino and espresso coffee are just waiting for you at every street corner. With such a large choice of food, choosing is definitely the hardest part of any meal.

Moreover, as the weather, pizza and gelato they just get better moving from North to South. The most authentic pizza can be eaten in Napoli were it was originally invented, while the most tasty gelato can be eaten in Sicily, even thought, nowadays, Sicilian Ice cream shop style can be found everywhere.

Since the secret of Italian food is simplicity, when ordering pizza you must ask for a Margherita (only tomato and mozzarella, better if Buffalo mozzarella, which is a mozzarella made from the milk of buffalo cow that live only in the South) and when ordering a gelato just go for chocolat, cream, and seasonal fruit flavours. If the gelato maker (gelataio, in Italian)  is good  it can not get any better than this.

 Italian Clothes, Italian fashion

In Italy, every region has its traditional costume, however, nowadays, people wear traditional costume only during special celebration (often link to Agricultural event such as the end of the harvest season) and historical parade.

The traditional Italian women’s costume consists of a long and wide dress which must cover the lady ankles. This is accompanies by a tight bodice with a small waist coat at the top. Women usually wear caps or head veils with it. The material and the colour of bodice and dress could express the lady provenience and her status. As an example, costume made of silk were very common in Lombardia (the region which host Milan) since in that area silk industry opened up since the Sixteen century. On the other hand, in the South, costume made out of sheep wool (in Sardinia this material was called orbace) were much more common.
The traditional Italian men´s costume was instead much less elaborate. It consists of tight pants tucked inside long boots. White pants were normally used only for special days (in which the farmer knew it was not going to work) or by the richest people. In fact, white trouser were very easy to get dirty and, at the time, very difficult to clean. Over the pant, men wear a shirt with tight waist coat, often a vest or a jacket and a hat. The shape of the hat is very regional: in the North people wear more rigid hat, where, in the South people wear soft one such as berretta.

Nowadays, however people dress much more casual. Italian fashion and style are famous all around the world and still today, many tourist, come to Italy just for having a shopping spree and visiting the most famous boutique in Rome and Milan (such as Versace, Dolce & Gabbana, Armani and many others). But fashion is not just a hobby for wealthy people only since many very good piece of clothing can be found in street markets as well. Sometimes real treasures can be found among the vendors of Porta Portese (Sunday street market in Rome) or La Montagnola (Friday and Saturday street market in Bologna) and many second hand shop are specializing in vintage clothing.

 

Italian Festivals, holidays, Celebrations

In Italy every village has its little festival, often link to the typical food of the area, but the most well know are, probably the Truffles festival of Alba and the Chocolate Festival of Turin (where Nutella was born) and Perugia (where Baci Perugina were invented). Food apart, others very famous Italian celebrations are the Carnevale di Venezia (Venice Carnival) and the Palio di Siena. The Carnevale di Venezia is a week long event that brings back all the city memories from the renascent time: beautiful couples dressed in silk, lace and mask walk around the old town streets and squares (in Venetian dialect calli and campi) and pose in the most magical corner of the city for the joy of tourist and professional photographer that come from all over the world just for bringing home some incredible shot. On the other hand, the Palio di Siena is a horse race that date back to the Middle Age and that it is still run following the ancient rules and tradition. Every horse in the race belongs to one of the downtown quarter and competition is fierce.  The jockeys run without saddle around the main city square and during the race many of them fall out their ride. However, since in this race all the attention is on the horse, even an horse with not jockey (called cavallo scosso in Italian) can bring its quarter to victory.

Famous Italian Stories or Epics

 

Italy is full of history so every battle field, castle, city tower and stone, basically carries its own small story and some very peculiar legend. A very famous one is the legend of Azzurrina (the little blue one), the daughter of the Rossena (a small village of the North closed to the city of Reggio Emilia and Modena) Castle porter. She was called Azzurina because of her odd features: she was a beautiful little girl with exceptionally fair skin and blue long hair. Because of her strange hair colour no other kid want to play with her so she was often seen playing alone in the shadow of the castle court yard. One day a very sudden and heavy summer storm hit the valley and from that day she disappeared. All the castle was in despair because she was such a sweet little child that nobody couldn’t help to love and her parents spend the rest of their life looking for her everywhere and asking for news to the merchants that travel the main road. However, still today, when summer storm put and end to the warmest summer days, some people could still hear the sound of a child laughing and playing around the castle court yard.

Italian Children’s Games

While in the kindergarten, I was playing with my friends 1-2-3- stella (1-2-3-star) a very simple game that keep us busy for hours at the time. One of us had to stand in front of a wall with his/her eyes close and and he has to say aloud ´1-2-3- stella´. In the mean time all the other kids had to stand away from the wall (5 meter away was usually the starting point) and fast moving toward it. Once the word stella was pronounced the kid at the wall could turn and open his eyes while the other kids had to stop and stand still in any position they were busted on. Anyone who could stand still had to go back to the starting point. The game was ending when one of the kids could touch with his/her hand the wall. He/she was considered the winner and he could decide which game play next

Verbal or nonverbal communication in Italy

In Italy people talk as much with their hands than with their mouth. Many foreigner people found that very charming and a bit funny, however it is true that Italian can not fully express them selves when gesture don’t follow their words. This make every conversation very theatrical and very fun to watch and hear.

When your hand move so much, invading other people personal space become pretty easy, hence, in the Italian culture, as in many other Mediterranean culture, people tend to maintain a short physical distance and touching each other (hand on shoulders, pats on the back) is a pretty common habits even among people that barely know each other. Because of that, even greetings among stranger became a kissing affair and, funny as it is, the number of kisses in the chick that made a greetings proper change moving from North (just one kissing or even just one hand shake among man who meet for the first time) to South (up to 3 or even 4 kisses no metter how close the people are).

Italian Values

Still nowadays the most part of Italian people considered themselves Catholics so Italy is full of old and, sometimes, new Catholics churches. The most important is, of course, the roman church of St. Peters, where the Pope lives and the body of S. Peter should be buried.

In general Italian people are very close to their family and they often don’t  live the parents house until they are 30 years old. Up to 40 years ago, people were actually living the family house only when they were getting married, but today things are different and once they graduate from high school or University, many young people move to other city (often bigger city of the Nord such as Bologna, Milano or Torino) looking for better working or studying opportunities. However, even when the kids are away, the mothers don’t stop to cook for them and few times a year package full of traditional homemade food appeared on the door steps of the kids who are living to faraway to be able to sit every week at the traditional Sunday lunch.

Italian Fun facts

Many Italian are highly superstitious so they try to spend the day in bed when Friday 17 come around, they change their way if a black cat cross their pat, they never walk under a stair and, when they spill salt, they throw an handful of it behind their left shoulder using their right hand so to scare the little demon that stand behind them. Moreover, different that in many other culture, for Italians number 13 is a very lucky number hence few people always wear a charm in the shape of a number 13, often paired with a little red corn (sometimes very similar to a red chilli pepper). Golden charms like those ones are considered lucky and they are often give to little kids as present in the day of their baptism. Even thought superstition is slowing disappearing, many people try to don´t sit 12 guests around their table (13 people at the table with the host) and, when this is unavoidable, they prepare the table for 14 anyway so to not have the night ruin by some unfortunate events they call on themselves.

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Famous places in Italy

Since Italy is full of history, almost every city has at list one famous place so any traveler could just choose for him selves were to go next. However, as a start, anyone should visit at list once Rome, the capital of one of the most famous ancient empire that can be considered an open air museum, Florence, the place were Renascence reached its highest picks of beauty and cultures and Venice, probably the most beautiful and romantic city of the world that was once one of the most important trading city of the world.

Example of Italian arts such as paintings and statues can, nowadays, be admired in many Museum of the world, but nothing beats the magic of seeing a Michelangelo or a Leonardo in the place were they were originally made, walking in the city where the artist live and breathing the air that they breathed.

When in Rome: Beautiful Must See places of Rome, Italy

The Pantheon: The Pantheon is a temple, church in Rome. It is absolutely beautiful, in a sense that it has hundreds to thousands of visitors every month. The original Pantheon was built in 27 BC-25 BC under the Roman Empire, during the third consulship of Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa, and his name is inscribed on the portico of the building. The inscription reads M·AGRIPPA·L·F·COS·TERTIUM·FECIT, “Marcus Agrippa, son of Lucius, consul for the third time, built this.” The building is circular with a portico of three ranks of granite Corinthian columns under a pediment opening into the rotunda, under a concrete dome, with a central opening (oculus), the Great Eye, open to the sky. The weight of the dome is concentrated on a ring of voussoirs 8.5 metres in diameter (almost 30 feet) which form the oculus. A rectangular structure links the portico with the rotunda. In the walls at the back of the portico were different sections for statues of Caesar, Augustus and Agrippa. The large bronze doors to the cella, once plated with gold, still remain, but the gold has gone away. The pediment was decorated with a sculpture in bronze showing the Battle of the Titans – holes can even still be seen where the clamps which held the sculpture in place were fixed. It is adorned with paintings, and a garden.

Roman Colloseum: The Colosseum’s name has long been thought to be derived from a colossus (a 130-foot or 40-metre statue) of Nero close by. The statue was later remodeled by Nero’s successors into the likeness of Sol or Apollo, the sun god, by adding the appropriate solar crown. Nero’s head was replaced several times by the head of succeeding emperors. At some time during the Middle Ages, the statue disappeared; people believe that since the statue was bronze, it was melted down for usage of other things. Evidence of its base may can be found between the Colosseum and the nearby Temple of Roma and Venus.

The Colloseum is an arena, a huge and vast space of masonry walls and can be seen miles away because of its height and width. The Colosseum measures 48 metres high, 188 metres long, and 156 metres wide. There are 80 arches on each of the first three levels, making 240. The wooden arena floor was 86 metres by 54 metres, and covered by sand. Its elliptical shape kept the players from retreating to a corner, and allowed the spectators to be closer to the action than a circle would allow. Over 100,000 cubic meters of travertine stone was used in its construction. Lots of plays, and fights were viewed in this area.

The Temple of Venus and Rome: the largest temple in Ancient Rome, It was located at the far east side of the Forum Romanum, near the Colosseum. It was dedicated to the goddesses Venus Felix (Venus the Bringer of Good Fortune) and Roma Aeterna (Eternal Rome). The designer was emperor Hadrian. Construction on the temple began in 121. Although the temple was officially inaugurated by Hadrian in 135, the building was finished in 141 under Antoninus Pius.

The building measured 110 m in length and 53 m in width. It was placed on a stage measuring 145 m in length and 100 m in width. The temple is made up of of two main chambers (cellae), where the cult statue of the god was, in this case the statues of Venus, the goddess of love, and Roma, the goddess of Rome, both of them seated on a throne. The cellae were placed symmetrically back-to-back. Roma’s cella was faced west, looking out over the Forum Romanum, Venus’ cella was faced east, looking out over the Colosseum.

Pastiera di maccheroni AND MORE!!! Fun and Fast Italian Recipes for Kids

Pastiera di maccheroni

Ingredients: 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 1 red onion, peeled and finely chopped, 1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped, 9 ounces pancetta, cubed, 18 ounces ground pork, 2 tablespoons freshly chopped rosemary, 1 x 14 ounce can cherry tomatoes, Salt and pepper to taste, 2 3/4 cups (11 ounces) penne rigate, 4 large eggs, 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Follow these steps and…….

-In a large saucepan, heat 4 tablespoons of the olive oil and sauté the onion and carrot for 5 minutes until soft, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.

-Add the pancetta with the ground pork and rosemary and cook, stirring continuously, until colored all over, about 5 minutes.

-Pour in the tomatoes, season with salt and pepper, and cook over medium heat for an additional 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool to room temperature.

-Meanwhile, cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente. Drain and add to the meat sauce. Stir well and let cool.

-Preheat the oven to 350°F.

-Break the eggs into the pan of cooled pasta and sauce, then add the grated Parmesan. Mix together.

-Brush the remaining oil over the side and base of an 8 1/2-inch round nonstick baking dish with sides about 2 inches deep. Pour in the pasta mixture and spread out evenly.

-Cook in the center of the preheated oven for 20 minutes until crispy and set.

-Once cooked, let rest for 5 minute–it will be easier to cut and serve, as the layers will hold together. VOILA!!!!

Turkey Sausage & Tortellini in Creamy Tomato Basil Sauce

Ingredients: 1 pound Italian-style turkey sausage, casing removed, 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) Campbell’s® Condensed Cream of Chicken Soup (Regular or 98% Fat Free), 1/2 cup water,1 can (about 14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes , undrained, 1 pound frozen cheese-filled tortellini, 2 tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves, grated Parmesan cheese

Directions:

-Cook the sausage in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat until it’s well browned, stirring often to break up the meat.

-Pour off any fat.Stir the soup, water, tomatoes and tortellini in the skillet and heat to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 5 minutes or until the tortellini is tender.

-Stir in the basil and serve with the cheese, if desired.

Arugula Pesto, Ricotta, and Smoked Mozzarella Pizza

Ingredients: Cornmeal, for dusting, 1/2 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese, 2 garlic cloves, crushed, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded smoked mozzarella cheese, 1 packed cup (1 ounce) arugula, Flour, for dusting, 1 (1-pound) ball store-bought pizza dough, Olive oil, for drizzling, 2 plum tomatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick

How To:

-In a food processor, blend the ricotta, garlic, salt, and pepper until smooth. Add the smoked mozzarella and arugula. Pulse until just combined but still chunky.

-On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough into a 14-inch circle, 1/4 to 1/8 inch thick. Transfer the dough to the prepared baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Spread the ricotta mixture on top, leaving a 1-inch border. Arrange the tomato slices on top and drizzle with olive oil.

Mama Mia!: Homemade Italian Pizza Recipe for Parents to have fun with their Kids (Mama Mia part 2)

Ingredients: 1/2 tablespoon active dry yeast, 1 teaspoon sugar, divided 1/2 cup water (105 F to 115 F), 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided 3/4 teaspoon salt, divided 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided 1 (14 1/2 ounce) can whole canned tomatoes, undrained 1 medium onion, chopped 1 garlic clove, minced 2 tablespoons tomato paste 1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves, crushed 1/2 teaspoon dried basil leaves, crushed 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper 1/2 small red bell pepper, cored and seeded 1/2 small green bell pepper, cored and seeded 4 fresh medium mushrooms, 1 3/4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese , 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese , 1/3 cup sliced black olives, 1 boneless skinless chicken breast, cooked and shredded

Directions: -To proof yeast, sprinkle yeast and 1/2 tsp sugar over warm water in small bowl; stir until yeast is dissolved.

– Let stand 15 minutes or until mixture is bubbly.  (If yeast doesnot bubble, it is no longer active. Always check expiration date on yeast packet. Also, water that is too hot will kill yeast, it is best to use a thermometer.)

- Place 1 1/2 cups flour and 1/4 tsp salt in medium bowl; stir in yeast mixture and 1 tbsp oil, stirring until a smooth, soft dough forms.

- Place dough on lightly floured surface; flatten slightly.

- To knead dough, fold dough in half toward you and press dough away from you with heels of hands.

- Give dough a 1/4 turn and continue folding, pushing and turning.

- Continue kneading, using as much of the remaining flour as needed to form a stiff, elastic dough.

- Shape dough into a ball; place in a large greased bowl.

- Turn to grease entire surface.  Cover with clean kitchen towel and let dough rise in warm place 30 to 45 minutes until doubled in bulk.

- Press 2 fingertips about 1/2 inch into dough.  Dough is ready if indentations remain when fingers are removed.

- For sauce, finely chop tomatoes in can w/knife, reserving juice.

-Heat remaining 1 tbsp oil in medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion; cook 5 minutes or until soft.  Add garlic; cook 30 seconds more.  Add tomatoes and juice, tomato paste, oregano, basil, remaining 1/2 tsp sugar, 1/2 tsp salt and black pepper

-Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat to medium low. Simmer, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes until saucethickens, stirring occasionally. Pour into small bowl; cool.

-Punch dough down. Knead briefly (as described in step 3) on lightly floured surface to distribute air bubbles; let dough stand 5 minutes more.

-Flatten dough into circle on lightly floured surface.  Roll out dough, starting at center and rolling to edges, into 10-inch circle.  Place circle in greased 12-inch pizza pan; stretch and pat dough out to edges of pan. Cover and let stand 15minutes.

-Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). 28 Cut bell peppers into 3/4-inch pieces. Wipe mushrooms clean w/damp kitchen towel and thinly slice (trim stems if desired).

-Mix mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses in small bowl. Spread sauce evenly over pizza dough.

-Sprinkle with 2/3 cheeses.

- Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes.

-Then remove from oven and raise oven temp to 400°F (200°C).

- Arrange bell peppers, olives, mushrooms, and chicken on top of pizza. Sprinkle remaining cheeses on top, and bake at new oven temp for a further 10 minutes or until cheese is completely melted, and looks done.

Mama Mia!!! What you didn’t know about Pizza…….

No trace can be found of the inventor of pizza, because it was considered a peasants meal in Italy. No person of higher rank would be caught eating it, at first. Over centuries, it quickly became a household favorite comfort food.

Food historians have come to a unanimous decision that pizza like dishes were eaten by many peoples in the Mediterranean including the Greeks and Egyptians. To our pizza loving readers, did you know that modern pizza has been attributed to baker Raffaele Esposito of Naples? In 1889, Esposito who owned a restaurant called the Pizzeria di Pietro baked what he called “pizza” especially for the visit of Italian King Umberto I and Queen Margherita. The very first pizza shop here in the United States of America was  opened in 1905 by Gennaro Lombardi at 53 1/3 Spring Street in New York City.

Why is pizza round out of all shapes? Actually, a lot of pizza will come in squares, but to save space, people would make pizza round so that it could fit into a box without compromising the actual food. Americans eat approximately 350 slices of pizza per second. And 36 percent of those pizza slices are pepperoni slices, making pepperoni the number one choice among pizza toppings in the United States. That’s a lot of pizza!!!!!

From the Electronic Battery to Buffalo Wings, Italian Inventors and crazy Things!!!

  1. Buffalo Chicken Wings——— Teressa Bellissimo———– 1964
  2. Electric Battery————– Alessandro Volta———— 1800
  3. Jacuzzi————— Jacuzzi Brothers—————1968
  4. Ice Cream Cone————— Italo Marcioni————–1896
  5. Pretzels——————- Italian Monks————— Circa 610 AD
  6. Thermometer————– Galileo Galilei—————-1593
  7. Wheel Lock————– Leonardo da Vinci———–16th century
  8. Telephone————— Antonio Meucci————–1871
  9. Piano—————— Bartolomeo Cristofori—————-1709
  10. Big Mac————— Jim Delligatti——————-1976
  11. Catapult————— Dionysius the Elder of Syracuse————399 B.C.
  12. Eyeglasses———— Salvino D’Armate————-1268-1264
  13. Radio——————- Nikola Tesla———-1895
  14. Scissors———-N/A———-1500 B.C.
  15. YoYo————Romans——–N/A
  16. Liposuction———Dr. Giorgio Fischer——–1974
  17. Cursive Handwriting————-Aldus Manutius——-N/A
  18. Ambulance——Mountain Troops——-1872
  19. Carbon Paper—— Pellegrino Turri——–1806
  20. Helicopter ——— Enrico Forlanini——–1877

Popular Children’s Literature of Italy

Aesop’s Fables (Dover Children’s Thrift Classics):

(Author- Aesop, Pat Stewart) Ages 4 to 8

-          The Adventures of Pinocchio: The Story of a Puppet:

(Author- Carlo Collodi, Iassen Ghiuselev)  Ages 9 to 12

-          Pompeii:

(Author- Peter Connolly) Ages 9 to 12

-          The Buried City of Pompeii: What It Was Like When Vesuvius Exploded (I Was There):

(Author: Shelley Tanaka, Greg Ruhl)

            Ages  9 to 12

-          Vulca the Etruscan (Journey Through Time Series):

(Author: Roberta Angeletti, Beatrice Masini) Ages 8 to 12

-          Leonardo and the Flying Boy:

(Author: Laurence Anholt) Ages 8 to 14

-          Bravo, Zan Angelo!: A Commedia Dell’Arte Tale With Story & Pictures:

(Author: Niki Daly) Age 10+

-          The Legend of Old Befana:

(Author: Tomie De Paola) Ages 4 to 10

-           Big Anthony: His Story:

(Author: Tomie De Paola) Ages 4 to 8

-          Opera Cat:

(Author: Tess Weaver, Andrea Wesson) Ages 4 to 8

Historical Figures of Italy: Painters, Hero’s, and More, for kids!!!

Donatello: Donatello (Donato di Niccolò di Betto Bardi) was born in 1386 and died on December 13, 1466. He was a famous sculptor and artist of Florence in the Early Renaissance. Famous statues include Gattamelata, and David.

-          Columbus: Cristoforo Columbo (Christopher Columbus) was born in 1451 and died May 20, 1506. He was an explorer and trader who sailed to America, reaching it on October 12, 1492. His discovery initiated the colonization of the Americas.

-          Michelangelo: Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni was born March 6, 1475 and died February 18, 1564. Michael Angelo was a Renaissance sculptor, architect, painter and poet. Angelo painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, sculpted the famous David and Pieta, and designed the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.

-          Galileo: Galileo Galilei was an Italian astronomer, astrologer, physicist, and philospher closely associeted with the scientific revolution. Galileo was born February 15, 1564 and died January 8, 1642. Galileo improved the telescope, observed various aspects of astronomy, developed the first and second laws of motion, and found proof to support Copernicanism. The conflict Galileo experienced with the Roman Catholic Church is seen as an example of the freedom of through conflict.

-          Versace: Gianni Versace created the Italian clothing business known as Versace in 1978. “Versace” is now headed by Donatella Versace, with Santo Versace as CEO. As one of the world’s leading international fashion houses, Versace designs, markets and distributes luxury clothing, accessories, and fragrances, make up and home furnishings.

-          Roman Centurion: originally an officer commanding one hundred soldiers. As the rank developed several degrees of elevation, so did the number of men under the centurion’s command. These officers were chosen for their intelligence and courage in battle. They were expected to lead the charge as an example.

-          Niccolo Machiavelli: a highly placed bureaucrat and diplomatist in the Florentine republic, whose writings over a wide range of topics gave us a penetrating view into renaissance culture and politics. For almost five hundred years, men in high places have been influenced and encouraged to follow his outline for power, as stated in his book Il Principe (The Prince), are based somewhat on his familiarity with the notorious César Borgia.

-          Emperor Nero: from 54 to 68 C.E. Adopted by Emperor Claudius, he succeeded him upon his death. His reign was characterized by extravagance and tyranny. Morally weak and extremely sensual, he was guilty of many murders, including his own wife’s. He was accused of allowing the fire that destroyed two-thirds of Rome to burn. Nero escaped being overthrown by committing suicide.

-          Pope Alexander VI: member of a dynasty of Spanish popes, he was seen as one of the “seven bad popes,” but he was no more worse or better than others of his time. He bought his election to the papacy, practiced nepotism with his large family, and tried to strengthen the papacy through conquest of central Italy.

Cesare Borgia: He was Machiavelli’s model for his ideal ruler, “The Prince.” He was very passionate in gaining revenge and avenging murders.

Top 10 Italian Names and Meanings for Girls and Boys

Girls

  • ADRIANA: Feminine form of Latin Adrianus, Spanish Adrián, and Italian Adriano, all meaning “from Hadria.”
  • ALLEGRA: Italian name meaning “cheerful and lively.”
  • ANJELICA: Variant spelling of Italian Angelica, meaning “angelic.”
  • ELISABETTA: Italian form of Greek Elisabet, meaning “God is my oath.”
  • GABRIELLA: Feminine form of Italian Gabriele, meaning “man of God” or “warrior of God.”
  • GIOVANNA: Feminine form of Italian Giovanni, meaning “God is gracious.”
  • Balbina: Little stammerer or stutterer, Also the name of a Catholic saint and early Roman martyr
  • Arietta: Small melody sung by a soloist; variant of Aria
  • Carmela: Garden, orchard, vineyard; Mount Carmel in Israel is considered a paradise.
  • Donnalee: Lady; from the respectful title Donna

Boys

  • ARSENIO: Italian and Spanish form of Latin Arsenius, meaning “virile.”
  • BERNARDINO: Pet form of Italian Bernardo, meaning “bold as a bear.”
  • CLEMENTE: Italian, Portuguese and Spanish form of Latin Clementius, meaning “gentle and merciful.”
  • DORIANO: Italian form of Latin Dorianus, meaning “of the Dorian tribe.”
  • ELIA: Italian form of Hebrew Eliyah, meaning “the Lord is my God.”
  • EMILIANO: Italian and Spanish form of Latin Æmilianus, meaning “rival.”
  • GERVASIO: Italian, Portuguese and Spanish form of Latin Gervasius, meaning “spear servant.”
  • GUIDO: Italian name derived from medieval Latin Wido, meaning “wide.”
  • JOVANNI: Italian form of Latin Johannes, meaning “God is gracious.”
  • LEONARDO: Italian, Portuguese and Spanish form of German Leonhard, meaning “lion-strong.”

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3kmj3PQBtEU]

Important Note: This article was written by a person who is familiar with Italian culture based on his or her personal anecdotal observations. Additionally, there are quite a few generalizations to make the article easier to understand for the children. Dino Lingo does not accept any responsibility for errors, omissions or subjectivity in the content of this post.

We are wondering what you know about Italian culture…Why don’t you tell us what you know by leaving a comment below?

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30 thoughts on “Italian Culture for Children – fun facts, food, music, language & Interesting facts about Italian Culture

  1. Wendy House

    Very good info for my children!
    By B.Hi.Ve

    Reply
  2. italian teacher

    This is a great article about Italian culture, I am from Italy and most of the people in Italy don’t know this much about our culture.
    Bravo.

    Reply
  3. Anoucha

    As an Italian Anerican girl from Northern NJ, now wrkniog in NYC, I agree with everything you said. Great round up.

    Reply
  4. marcus

    can u do abit more facts on different things for my project

    Reply
  5. amlechho

    need more information of the culture of italian food

    Reply
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  7. alex bachelder

    Dear website,
    All these facts are way tooooo longgg i suggest making more facts but they could be like one sentance.
    Thank You Soooo Much,
    student reader

    Reply
    1. alex bachelder

      that is a great suggestion thanks 4 subscribing!

      Reply
  8. DakotaBlue

    It’s really good, but the grammar is appalling…

    Reply
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  10. Bo

    Thank you for the auspicious writeup. It if truth be told used to be a enjoyment account it. Glance complicated to far added agreeable from you! However, how could we keep in touch?

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  12. jonny

    i cant find music they should put music in the beginning

    Reply
  13. jonny

    wait a minute it doesn’t tell us the music they should add the music

    Reply
  14. jonny

    but these are really good facts.

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