The Age of Discovery would never have reached its zenith had it not been for Italian explorers. Italian explorers set sail to far out places for a sense of adventure and profit, and it is due to their adventurous spirit, that many new places were discovered.
In addition to exploration, Italians were also great inventors. Many commonly used items in our daily lives were invented by Italians including battery, thermometer, barometer, nitroglycerin and wireless telegraphy. And there are more, such as, ice cream cone, typewriter, violin, cello, piano, mechanical clock, optical glasses, scooter and telephone. Automobiles are among Italy's greatest products as Italy is well-known for its formula and racing cars like Fiat, Ferrari, Alfa Romeo, Lamborghini, Maserati and Chrysler.
Listed below is a list of ten Italian inventions that most of us use on a daily basis.
- The Espresso Machine
The espresso machine is said to be the most famous Italian invention as most Italians like to drink coffee. Statistics say that an Italian, on an average, drinks over 450 gallons of coffee per year. In 1903, Luigi Bezzera invented the espresso machine so as to speed up the coffee making process. The espresso coffee maker used a combination of water and steam, forced under high pressure, to brew the coffee at a rapid pace.
Although the Pizza was invented sometime during 1860 in Naples, it was in 1889 during the visit of Queen Margherita of Savoy to Naples, that the pizza became truly international. The Queen was served this delicacy where the toppings resembled the colors of the Italian flag, red, white and green (tomato, mozzarella and basil toppings). She loved it and the locals named this delicacy after the name of the Queen Margherita.
Sometime during 610, an Italian monk came up with his freshly baked pretzels idea during the Lent period. It was mainly made for small children who had learned their prayers. Initially named "pretiola", it was later changed to 'bretzel' when it reached Germany.
- Ice cream cone
It is difficult to perceive a century ago, ice cream was being sold in glasses which were obviously not very hygienic. It was during 1903 an enterprising ice cream salesman, Italo Marciony began manufacturing and marketing edible cones filled with ice cream.
The Cologne was concocted sometime in 1708 by Gian Paolo Feminis who had originally immigrated to Cologne in Germany and where he passed the formula on to a fellow Italian, Giovanni Maria Farina. Ferina quickly named the new found composition as Eau de Cologne and informed people that he was the inventor. Not to be outdone, Gian Paolo Feminis quickly came up with a new cologne in 1709 and called it "Aqua Admirabilis".
Statistics say that about 11 out of 20 Italian people have either reading glasses or require eyeglasses. Eyeglasses were invented by an Italian monk, Salvino D’Armate during the 13th century. The early eyeglasses were balanced on the nose, as frames were introduced much later.
Andrea Amati invented the violin sometime during the late 16th century. Eventually, it was two men Stradivari and Guarneri who perfected it during the 17th century. Few violins that were made during this period still exist and they are phenomenally expensive.
In 1948, Roy Jacuzzi, an Italian immigrant to the US invented the Jacuzzi (yah-kutsee). He specialized in water pumps and used this specialization to invent a bathtub pump for his son, who was inflicted with rheumatoid arthritis.
- The typewriter
The typewriter or the carbon cardboard was invented by Pellegrino Turri in 1808. However, as with the automobile and the light bulb, no single person can be credited with the invention of the typewriter as a number of people contributed that eventually resulted in a commercially successful typewriter.
The electric battery was invented by the Italian Alessandro Volta during the 1800. Since then it has become a common power source for many applications, both commercial and household applications.
In addition to the above, there are several more inventions that can be credited to Italians. In fact, the earliest modern banks first appeared in Genoa during the 12th century. This was a necessity as large amounts of money had to be transferred from one point to another so as to finance war crusades. This allowed the transfer of money without the risk of robbery while traveling. It is also interesting that the world's oldest bank is still in business in Italy and has been operating since 1472.
More information can be got as you visit Italy. However, if you want to visit Italy, then your first step would be to learn some basic Italian. You can do this easily by learning Italian online. Our review site at TopTenREVIEWS will further guide you in learning Italian online and provide you with all sorts of information on online Italian courses.