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Cultural Relations and Greek Community
The Hellenic Institute for Byzantine and Post-Byzantine Studies opened in Venice in 1951, providing for the study of Byzantine and Post-Byzantine history in Italy, and particularly in Venice and the Greek regions during the period of Venetian domination. It is located at the headquarters of the Greek Brotherhood of Venice, which was granted to the Greek state by the Brotherhood.
Cultural activities focussing on Greece are numerous throughout Italy. The Italian Institute of Athens plays a key role in Italy’s cultural presence in Greece.
The Greek Italian community numbers some 30,000 and is concentrated mainly in central Italy. The age-old presence in Italy of Italians of Greek descent – dating back to Byzantine and Classical times – is attested to by the Griko dialect, which is still spoken in the Magna Graecia region.
This historically Greek-speaking villages are Condofuri, Galliciano, Roccaforte del Greco, Roghudi, Bova and Bova Marina, which are in the Calabria region (the capital of which is Reggio). The Grecanic region, including Reggio, has a population of some 200,000, while speakers of the Griko dialect number fewer that 1,000 persons.