The Italian national anthem is a lively and rousing hymn called 'Il Canto degli Italiani' (The Song of the Italians). It is also known as 'Fratelli d'Italia' (Brothers of Italy), taken from the first line of the lyrics. The formal name is 'Inno di Mameli' - Mameli's hymn, named after the man who wrote the words Goiffredo Mameii and set to music a few months later by a fellow Genoese, Michele Novaro.

Written in 1847 the hymn was not adopted as the national anthem until 1946. Even more surprisingly, it was made the official anthem by law as recently as November 2005. Like all great national anthems, Italy's was written in the shadow of war and is a patriotic call to arms with music to match. Goffredo Mameli, the composer was a twenty year-old poet and composer ,who tragically died only two years after it was written. He wasn't well known and this was really his only masterpiece. He was born in Genoa, 5th. September 1827 and died in Rome, 6 July 1849.

More Info: