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The National flag of the Republic of Italy is rectangular, with three equal
vertical sections of green, white and red. The green is next to the pole, the
white in the middle and the red on the outer side. Because of its three
colours, the Italian flag is also called the Tricolore.
The Italian Tricolore was originally a variation of the flag of the French
Revolution, the blue having been substituted by green, symbol of hope or of
nature and hence of mans natural right to liberty and equality.
The Tricolore made its first appearance during a student uprising in
Bologna in 1795 and was later seen in many a patriotic manifestation. On
January 7, 1797, during a convention at Reggio Emilia, it was officially
adopted as the flag of the Repubblica Cispadana (Republic on the south
side of the Po` River) composed of the cities of Bologna, Ferrara, Modena
and Reggio Emilia. By royal proclamation issued on March 23, 1848 when
the Piedmontese army crossed into Lombardy, Charles Albert King of
Piedmont, adopted it adding his familys emblem. In 1861 after the
proclamation of the Kingdom of Italy it became the national flag.
Italy was a kingdom under the reign of the Savoy Dynasty for 76 years.
During this period the Tricolore bore the royal Savoy emblem in the white
field. When Italy became a Republic, on June 2, 1946 the royal emblem was




You will find some of the countries around Italy have been marked on the
map again. Use the first letter clue to write the full names on the map. Do
not forget to use the Italian name. On this map we have included an African
country, Tunisia, to help you realize how close the northern part of Africa is
to Italy. North Africa has always played an important part in European

We have already seen that the Mediterranean is the sea that dominates this
part of the world. Of course this map does not show the whole seas which
stretches from Spain in the west to Middle Eastern countries such as Israel

and Lebanon.
Notice that in Italian you say the word for sea (mare) first and then give the
name of the sea, e.g. Mar Mediterraneo. (The final e of Mare is often left
out when sea names are given.)
Now mark in the seas: Mar Mediterraneo, Mar Ligure, Mare Adriatico,
Mar Tirreno and Mar Ionio. You will find the English names in an atlas. The
main Italian sea ports are Napoli and Genova. Genova is on the Mar

The Italian name given to the mountains that stretch across the north of Italy
is Le Alpi (The Alps). Of course, Italy shares these mountains with other
countries in the area.
Le Alpi have always been a great tourist attraction, but they make it pretty
hard getting into Italy from France, Austria or Switzerland. To do this you
have to use a pass, like the famous Brenner Pass that goes from Austria to
Italy.(is this applicable now with united Europe??)
Long legged Italy kicked poor Sicily in to the Mediterranean Sea.
Actually, Sicily is part of Italy. Its one of those 20 regions we mentioned
before. The island that bounced off the kneecap is Sardegna and it is also a
region of Italy.
Italia is a peninsula.
You may know of a peninsula in your part of the world.

Australia is obviously much bigger than Italy. Would you believe 25 12 times
bigger??!! In fact, Italy is not all that much bigger than Victoria, and yet it is a
country with a language and a way of life quite different from the countries
around it. Like Australia, Italy is divided into states. Italy calls them regioni
(regions) and there are 20 of them, each with its own capital city.
Italy has more than 60 million people, Australia has about 21 million. So, 25
12 times smaller, but nearly three times as many people!

Italy is on the other side of the world. To get there a jet must make at least
one stopover in order to refuel. On the map mark one of the routes from
Sydney to Rome used by Italys international airlines Alitalia.
Can you name the city used as stop over?
The name Alitalia is made up from two Italian words. Can you find out what
they are?
Imagine you are planning a trip to Italy. Here are some of the things that you
would need to work out:

(a) You want to arrive in the middle of the Italian summer. About what date
will you leave Australia?

(b) Can you really afford to go? Try to find out how much the trip will cost.

(c) How long will the trip take you? (Ask someone who has been there or
ring a travel agent or airline)

(d) Which airlines would you choose & why?


Italy is a part of Western Europe. It is a European country. Europe like
Australia, is a continent, but unlike the Australian continent, it is made up of
many different countries.
Now look at the size of the map of Australia which has been placed over the

map of Europe. It is a big country! A trip overland from Sydney to Melbourne

to Perth would be roughly the same distance as a trip from Greece to Spain
overland. But on the Australian trip you never leave the one country. When
you get to Perth you can speak the same language you were speaking back
East. Your trip from Grecia to Spagna could take you through Iugoslavia,
Austria, Svizzera and Francia. Each country has its own language and its
own way of life. In fact, some of the countries mentioned have more than
one language.
See what you can find out about this.
Below are the names for some of the European countries marked on the
map. Next to each one write the Italian equivalent.

France _________________
Austria _________________
Greece _________________
Portugal ________________

Switzerland ______________________
Spain ___________________________
Germany ________________________
Belgium _________________________