Marche, Italy

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Located on the eastern coast of central Italy is Le Marche, a region that covers approximately 3.616 square miles. In size, Marche is the sixth smallest region in Italy and the eighth smallest in population. An interesting fact about Marche, Italy, is that most of the luxury shoes that are manufactured in Italy are made in this region. 

The Le Marche region of Italy sits between the Apennine Mountains and the Adriatic Sea. The port city is located on the Riviera del Conero and boasts of coves, cliffs, and medieval villages.

Cities as Seen on a Map of Marche, Italy:

  • Ancona
  • Ascoli Piceno
  • Urbino
  • Pesaro
  • Fermo

Quick Facts:

  • Population = 1.5 million
  • Language = Italian, Marchigiano (Indo-European Romance family)
  • Ethnicities = Italian, Roman, German
  • Capital = Ancona


The History of Marche

Marche was ruled by Ancient Rome until the fall of the Roman Empire in 476. After the Roman Empire fell, the region was invaded by a Germanic tribe called the Goths. The Goths ruled the region until the Gothic War between 535 and 554, giving the Byzantines control of the region. The Byzantines were also known as the Eastern Roman Empire, which kept the region under Roman control. 

During the Napolean period of the early 1800s, Marche was officially part of the Papal States. The Papal States were territories in Italy that were ruled by the Pope. Napolean was defeated in 1816, and Marche became annexed into the Kingdom of Italy. 


The official language spoken in Marche is Italian and Marchigiano. Marchigiano is a type of Italian dialect that is from the Indo-European Romance family of languages. 


As Marche, Italy was part of Ancient Rome, the Byzantine Empire, and the Papal States; there are strong ties to Roman Catholicism throughout the region, making Roman Catholicism the primary religion in the region. 


The eastern coast of Marche borders the Adriatic Sea and is measured at 107 miles long. Two-thirds of the region is hilly, and the remaining third is plains and coastline. The geography of the region never gave way to successful agriculture. The only agriculture that is produced in the region is cereal, few vegetables, animals, and grapes, which is minimal compared to other regions in Italy.

The main use of the geography has been to establish cities and create industrial manufacturers to focus on working through trades and other skilled labor, which is how the region is home to the largest manufacturer of luxury shoes produced in Italy. 


There is not much information on the culture in Marche, other than the people were deeply connected to the Romans during different time periods. Musical influences are also related to the region, as the town of Castelfidardo produces many musical instruments, with the primary instrument being the accordion.

Migration Patterns

Throughout the entire Kingdom of Italy during the 1860s, emigrants left in search of work due to unemployment, overcrowding, poverty, and sickness. These nearly 13 million emigrants were recorded as the largest number of emigrants in world history. 

Over time, some emigrants repatriated, while others remained in the areas in which they relocated, but the region was still in a deficit even into the 1950s. 

It is recorded that between 1952 and the late 1960s that the population in the region decreased by nearly 2% due to a second wave of emigration. This wave of emigration was a result of the economic destruction that was left during World War II.

Finally, beginning in 1990, the net population started to trend to the positive. It is recorded that the area saw a 3% increase in the population between 1990 and 2001; however, historians believe that the area will suffer another decline in the near future as the majority of the population in the region is older. Without youth and rebirth to replenish the population, it is likely to see another decline.


Genealogy in the region of Marche is linked to Roman, Italian, and German heritage. The most dominant of these are Roman and Italian, as the region was controlled by Romans and Italians for a longer period than Germanic tribes, but German can still be found in the lineage. This means that people with genealogy connected to the Marche, Italy region may possess features related to German people, such as blonde hair and light-colored eyes, and still be considered Italian because their genealogy is traced back to the area.

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Caleb Pike
About the author

Caleb Pike is an avid hiker and nature lover, with a passion for exploring the great outdoors. He's a writer, photographer, and adventurer, always seeking new trails to blaze and peaks to conquer.