Do you know that 2011 is the 150th birthday of modern Italy? Before unification, the "boot" was divided with different waring factions/empires/kingdoms centred around Rome, Florence, Siena, etc. And of course, further back in time, there was the Great Roman Empire that occupied at one point, all of present-day Europe, much of North Africa and part of the Middle East.
Empires rise and fall. The peoples remain the same. Some emigrate. The culture lives on.
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