The Italian Almanac

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the vampire premier

The Vampire Premier

A group of student protesters hung a huge poster of Premier Mario Monti depicted as a vampire from one of Rome's most famous monuments, the Altare della Patria (The Altar of the Homeland).

The poster had the slogan "Baroni" (Barons) written on it, a reference to professors accused of running university departments as their own personal fiefdoms.

The massive marble monument is home to Italy's Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and features an equestrian sculpture of Victor Emmanuel II as it was built to honour the nation's first king.

Monti is an academic and a former European commissioner.