Italian Scots or Scots-Italians are people of Italian descent living in Scotland. These terms may refer to people who are born in Scotland and of Italian descent. It can also refer to people of mixed Scottish and Italian ancestry. A recent Italian voter census estimated that there are 70,000 to 100,000 people in Scotland of Italian descent or Italian nationals, which is up to 1.9% of the overall Scottish population.
|No exact numbers but estimates range from 35,000 to 100,000|
|Regions with significant populations|
|Throughout Scotland specifically Glasgow ·|
|Scots · English · Italian (and related forms)|
|Roman Catholicism|
|Related ethnic groups|
|Italian, Welsh Italians, Italian Americans, Italian Australians, Italian Canadians|
Latest available figures from the 2011 UK Census show there were 6,048 people born in Italy living in Scotland. This was up from 4,936 in 2001 and 3,947 recorded in 1991. In 2016, Ronnie Convery, secretary of the Italian Scotland charitable organisation and director of communications at the Archdiocese of Glasgow, asserted that a completely new dimension was being added to the Scots-Italians community. He said, “There has been a brand new migration over the past two years, and the biggest one we have seen in 100 years."
Arguably the first people from Italy to reach Scotland were the Romans in and around 40AD, although the modern nation of Italy did not exist at the time and of course the Roman Empire was a cosmopolitan institution, with some Roman Emperors from the Iberian Peninsula and North Africa. Still, the Romans were for the most part from what is now Italy and they did leave their mark on Scotland in the shape of Hadrian's Wall, Antonine Wall and other monumental constructions, although it was not until the end of the 19th century that an Italian-Scots identity really began to take shape.
Many Italian-Scots can trace their ancestry back to the 1890s where their forefathers escaped drought, famine and poverty in their homeland for a better life in Scotland; yet it was not until World War I that a sizeable population of Italian-Scots—over 4,000—began to emerge, with Glasgow hosting the third largest community in the United Kingdom. Since then, there has been a steady flow of migration between the two countries.
Italy and the fascist involvement in World War II brought many hardships on Italians settled in Scotland - many families were separated as adult males were interned. The family members that were left behind were forced to cope with mistrust and discrimination. Of those imprisoned many men found themselves held in Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man. A number of others were employed in Orkney, at Scapa Flow, to construct a barrier against Nazi U-boats. These men additionally constructed the Chapel of Lambholm from scrap metal and junk. Nowadays, this Chapel is one of Orkney's most popular tourist attractions.
Today, Italian Scots can be found working in all manner of professions. However, a large proportion of the community have plied their trade in the catering industry, working in the chip shops, ice-cream parlours, pizzerias and restaurants across Scotland.
In Edinburgh,The Italo-Scottish Research Cluster (ISRC) aims to study Italian immigration in Scotland and promote relations between Scotland and Italy.
Notable Italian ScotsEdit
- John Amabile, interior designer
- Ronni Ancona, impressionist and actress
- Nicola Benedetti, violinist
- Romana D'Annunzio, television presenter
- Junior Campbell, musician and composer
- Gianni Capaldi, actor
- Lewis Capaldi (b. 1996), singer-songwriter and first cousin, twice removed of actor Peter Capaldi.
- Peter Capaldi (b. 1958), actor and director, best-known for being the twelfth Doctor Who from 25 December 2014-2017.
- Emilio Coia, caricaturist
- Jack Coia, architect
- Paul Coia, television presenter
- Angela Constance, Scottish National Party MSP
- Mario Joseph Conti, emeritus Archbishop of Glasgow
- Tom Conti, actor
- Nina Conti, actor, impressionist and comedian
- Adrienne Corri, actress
- Simon Danielli, rugby union player
- Richard Demarco, art impresario
- Sophia Dussek, musician
- Paul di Giacomo, footballer
- Linda Fabiani, Scottish National Party MSP, and former Minister for Culture.
- Charles Forte, hotelier
- Rocco Forte, hotelier
- Dario Franchitti, Racecar driver
- Marino Franchitti, Racecar driver
- Chris Fusaro, rugby player
- Armando Iannucci, writer and satirist
- Keira Lucchesi, actress
- Lou Macari, footballer and football manager
- Peter Marinello, footballer
- Oscar Marzaroli, photographer
- Dominic Matteo, footballer
- Kirsty Mitchell, actress
- Alberto Morrocco, artist
- Giovanni Moscardini, footballer
- Sir Anton Muscatelli, Principal and Vice-Chancellor
of the University of Glasgow
- Daniela Nardini, actress
- Paolo Nutini, singer-songwriter
- Sir Eduardo Paolozzi, sculptor
- Carmen Pieraccini, actress
- Frank Pignatelli CBE chief executive Scottish University for Industry ; former director of education Strathclyde region
- Paul di Resta, Formula 1 racecar driver
- David Rizzio, private secretary of Mary, Queen of Scots
- Marcus di Rollo, rugby player
- Carla Romano, TV journalist
- George Rossi, actor
- Ricky Sbragia, footballer
- Tom Sermanni, football coach
- Rachel Sermanni, singer-songwriter
- Sharleen Spiteri, singer-songwriter; guitarist; lead vocalist of the Scottish pop-rock band Texas
- Ken Stott, actor
- Philip Tartaglia, Archbishop of Glasgow
- Alexander Trocchi, writer
- Peter Vettese, musician
- Lena Zavaroni, singer
In popular cultureEdit
- "What impact have Scots-Italians had on Scotland?". www.scotsman.com. Retrieved 2017-11-09.
- "Italian role in Scotland honoured". BBC News. 3 November 2004. Retrieved 2008-03-16.
- "History". ScotsItalian.com. Retrieved 2008-03-16.
- "Orkney's Italian Gift". BBC. Retrieved 2008-03-16.
- "About us". The University of Edinburgh. Retrieved 2017-11-09.
- Pieri, J. (2005) 'The Scots-Italians: Recollections of an Immigrant' The Mercat Press