The Italian Almanac


Italian News - February 1

A study by the government's national research centre has found that by 2000 more than a quarter of Italians, most of them men, were living with their parents until they were over 30 - almost double the number of 10 years before; and the trend is continuing.

The number of people aged 30 to 34 living at their parents' home increased to 27% in 2000, from 14% in 1990. The number of those aged 20 to 24 doing so rose from 80% to 90%. Two-thirds of those choosing to stay longer with their parents were men, the centre said, bolstering the image of the Italian mammone, a man who is attached to his mother well into adulthood.

Adele Menniti, the author of the report, said the trend was partly due to increased longevity. The country has one of the oldest populations in the world and Italians, it seems, don't feel in any hurry to grow up. Ms Menniti said economic pressures, long university degree programmes and feminism were also factors.

"Here, you don't leave home until you marry," she said. "But young people these days are waiting longer and longer before they tie the knot. This is because of the women ... they are concentrating more and more on their careers."