Italy, officially the Italian Republic, is a unitary parliamentary republic in Europe. Located in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea, Italy shares open land borders with France, Switzerland, Austria, Slovenia, San Marino and Vatican City. Italy covers an area of 301,338 km2 (116,347 sq mi) and has a largely temperate seasonal climate and Mediterranean climate. Due to its shape, it is often referred to in Italy as lo Stivale (the Boot). With 61 million inhabitants, it is the fourth most populous EU member state. Since classical times, ancient Phoenicians, Carthaginians and Greeks established settlements in the south of Italy, with Etruscans and Celts inhabiting the centre and north of Italy respectively and various different ancient Italian tribes and Italic peoples dispersed throughout the Italian Peninsula and insular Italy.
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