northern italy vs southern italy
#1
I am curious what are the differences and why do they exist? Somebody was telling me northern italy is like a different country, and i was reading online how the two vote differently politically like in 1946 whether to keep the monarchy or not. Of course every country has regional differnces, but in italy from what I have heard and read it seems more palpable

do the differences go back as far as when the barbarian kingdoms emerged in the north while the byzantine empire occupied the south - or is it a more recent thing like from Italian unification or something?

actually thinking I may have answered my question... seems to me the origin of the differences may span centuries with the holy roman empire and the city states in the north in contrast to naples and sicily in the south (of course siciliy is its own thing compared to the rest of italy)

i have also read northern Italians tend to have paler complexions with a lot of red heads and blonds, in contrast to the south where people tend to have a darker complexions... makes me curious if this is from the dark ages when germanic barbaians controlled and settled the area or before in ancient times when the Romans conquered the region and the locals and just changed their language from celtic to latin
Reply
#2
Southern Italy used to be called Magna Grecia, it used to be greek speaking and full of greek colonies, Naples and Syracuse used to be huge cities, the most famous inhabitant of Syracuse was Archimedes.

In northern italy, you had preindoeuropean natives, like the etruscans and ligurians, but those territories faced constant migrations from central europe, the Po Valley became celtic speaking, central italy became italic and eventually, because of the romans, all of italy became latin speaking, greek was retained for much longer in the south because of the byzantine presence there. Even nowadays around Calabria you have a few thousand speakers of the local greek dialect.

It is true that people in northern italy are fairier, in looks they resemble the french in my opinion, but it is not a drastic difference. Perhaps the northern parts of italy are central european influenced because of the celtic and german migrations, meanwhile, southern italy is more greek-anatolian and north african influence, but the difference ain't huge.

When Italy became unified, the wealthiest part of Italy was the South, the Kingdom of the two Sicilies, the northen italian cities became decadent once world trade stopped being mediterranean centered and became atlantic centered. The unification of Italy was very bad for the south, it is right after the unification that southern italians begin to emigrate en masse. Although  many northern italians emigrated too.
Reply
#3

Never been there, but from what I understand the north is much more urban and industrial while the south is more rural and agricultural.

There is somewhat of a ethnic difference as well with the north being more European looking while Sicily and tip of the boot seems to have been infested with the blood  lines of Saracens and North Africans.

Although I have known some light Sicilians  fair-skinned even with red and blond hair, a product of the one time Norman invaders so I am told.

Reply
#4
One thing they both have in common is they suck at soccer. Start playing like men ya' wimps.
Reply
#5
I am descended from a Southern Italian (from Naples)  and a Northern Italian.  :)
Reply
#6
Northern Italian, here.  My family is all dark hair, and while we start out white we tan very easily without much burning.  Culturally, there are major differences between us and the South.  The most obvious ones are culinary and political, more so than the way people look, although the Northern Italians are usually more concerned with fashion than they are in the South. 

What most Americans think of as "Italian food" is really Southern Italian food.  I rarely see the foods I grew up with in a resturant, except in Northern California, where most of the Italians are from the North.  We eat a lot more risotto, veal, and white sauces, instead of red sauce and pasta.  Yes, there is pasta in the North, but risotto and oso buco are much more typical.

Politically, the North is seen are more "right-wing," and also more pro-business, which makes sense, as they have more factories and such, while the South is more agricultural.

Viva la Padania!
Reply
#7
Language is a bit different.  My dad was from Sicily and his first language was their dialect.  I actually think it's closer to the kind of spanish they speak in Toledo than what you'd get in Florence or an italian class in college.  Mostly the way they pronunciations but also quite a few words. 
Reply
#8
(01-02-2011, 12:01 AM)LausTibiChriste Wrote: One thing they both have in common is they suck at soccer. Start playing like men ya' wimps.

Italy has won 4 world football championships. Only Brazil has won more than them.

I'd hardly call them "wimps", even if they currently are down.
Reply
#9
Anything north of Rome is French, anything north of Palermo is suspect.

Quote:What most Americans think of as "Italian food" is really Southern Italian food.  I rarely see the foods I grew up with in a resturant, except in Northern California, where most of the Italians are from the North.  We eat a lot more risotto, veal, and white sauces, instead of red sauce and pasta.  Yes, there is pasta in the North, but risotto and oso buco are much more typical.

Mangiapolenta!    ;)
Reply
#10
(01-03-2011, 04:10 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote:
(01-02-2011, 12:01 AM)LausTibiChriste Wrote: One thing they both have in common is they suck at soccer. Start playing like men ya' wimps.

Italy has won 4 world football championships. Only Brazil has won more than them.

I'd hardly call them "wimps", even if they currently are down.
I called em wimps not bad soccer players. Good actors too they prance around the field and fake injuries like a bunch of douches.
Reply




Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)