The Italian region that ‘doesn’t exist’

Nov 06, 2019 1476

BY: Alex Sakalis

Molise, a small region in south-eastern Italy, is famous for one thing: it doesn’t exist. Well, technically, it does exist. As one of Italy’s 20 official regions, Molise has a status equal to Tuscany, Lombardy or Piedmont. It holds regional elections and votes in national ones. It borders the regions of Abruzzo, Puglia, Lazio and Campania, all indisputably real places. So why do Italians like to pretend that Molise doesn’t exist?

“I first came across it on the internet several years ago,” said Enzo Luongo, a journalist and author of the book Il Molise Non Esiste (Molise Doesn’t Exist). “People had started posting the hashtag #ilmolisenonesiste as a joke, making fun of the region’s small size as well as our relative obscurity within Italy.”

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