BUONGIORNO! -Why everyone in Italy is a dottore

Dottore is the word that comes before a person's name and says that person is Italian."

Journalist & writer Indro Montanelli (*1909, †2001)

In the land of world-famous artworks and fantastic cuisine, you can't simply be addressed as "Mr" or "Mrs". Mamma mia, the status! Why Italy wants its "Dottore"so loves...

via dei condotti, rome, spanish stairs
The special Italian style, here the Via dei Condotti in Rome

The lawyer is of course addressed as "Avvocata" Rossi, the engineer as Ingenere Berlusconi, the teacher as a "Professora" Ferrari. They are all in Italy anyway "Dottori":

As soon as you have completed your Bachelor's degree, you are entitled to the title in Italy "Dottore" or "Dottoressa". Regardless of this: Especially in central and southern Italy, it is good manners to address people accordingly.

Makes sense: when you're in Italy with dottore, dottoressa If you are addressed, you feel directly respected and are ready to talk. Quite different from "Hey, you there" or "Hello, miss". Logical.

Facts about Italy, here Florence
...and here in Florence: With so much art, a little "dottore" be...

A little politeness and respect, optionally also flattery, does not hurt. Regardless of whether you are an (unofficial) parking attendant or a (semi-legal) watch salesman: in Italy, services are generally offered to a dottore or a dottoressa an.

By the way: the actual doctoral title, as it is known worldwide, in Italy is the Dottore di ricerca (abbreviated Dott. Ric.). In Italy, you need a doctorate to do this. That takes at least three years.

...a small drop of bitterness for all those who are proud of their (university) diploma: In Italy, a Diploma not really worth much. In Italy means Diploma only advanced technical college entrance qualification...

agriturismo in calabria, perfect with italian summer hits 2022
A summer evening in Calabria
on the way in the gondola in venice
City of Longing Venice

+++ Hotel, country house or city flat: Your accommodation in Italy here... Ad

University life in Italy: A little excursion...

With the University of Bologna, Italy has the oldest university in Europe. The university was founded as early as 1088. Even in the Middle Ages, exchange students came to Italy to do research. Today, a good 80,000 young people study in Bologna.

In Italy there are 66 state Università, 4 state Politecnici (technical universities) and 29 private, state-recognised universities. In addition, there are 3 Scuoli Superiori (for business-related graduate studies), 3 Università per Stranieri (specifically for foreign students), 11 Università Telematiche (distance learning universities), pontifical universities (all based in Rome) and a large number of higher education institutions in the fields of music, art, design and restoration.

There are currently about 2 million people studying in Italy, of whom about 4 per cent are from abroad.

The Queen of Tuscany


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By Train through Italy

Public transport works really well in Italy - especially between cities. With Omio you can buy your ticket for the good train and bus connections in real time.

Our latest articles from Italy - without Dottore...

written by Annie Kayser, first published 20.9.21

Cover photo/montage: Antonio Gravante/Getty Images; waldo93/pixabay via canva.com

Sources: own calculations; Free University of Bolzano; Daniele Orla: "How to use salutations and titles correctly in Italian" (Experto.de/Businesstipps); FAZ/Tobias Piller: "Niemals ohne den Dottore" (Never without the Dottore)