Cecina, Tuscany – January 2, 2024
Italy bids farewell to Tripoli Giannini, affectionately known as Tripolino, its oldest man, who peacefully passed away at the age of 111 in his home near Livorno on New Year’s Eve. Giannini, the second-oldest man in Europe, leaves behind a legacy of a century marked by light meals, minimal stress, and a profound appreciation for each day.
Announcing the news on Facebook, Giannini’s son, Romano, shared, “He believed he was immortal … instead, at 9.30 am, on the day of San Silvestro (New Year’s Eve), my father Tripoli Giannini died. He was 111 years and 133 days old – a record! He joins his wife, Tosca, my mother, who has waited for him for over 40 years.”
Born in Cecina in 1912, Giannini served in the Italian army infantry corps, witnessing two world wars and two pandemics. As one of Italy’s increasing number of centenarians, he reflected on his 111 years during his birthday celebration last August. Giannini attributed his long life to a regimen of light meals always accompanied by wine, a stress-free lifestyle, abstinence from smoking, and approaching each day as a precious gift.
Italy, with a burgeoning population of centenarians, recorded 22,000 people over the age of 100 in 2023, according to Istat, with a majority being women. Regions like the Italian island of Sardinia have been recognized for having high concentrations of centenarians, and Genoa in Liguria boasts the highest number of centenarians among Italian cities.
The Mediterranean diet, renowned for its health benefits, has long been associated with the longevity of Italians. However, Italy’s aging population presents challenges for Prime Minister GiorgiaMeloni’s government, especially with a declining birthrate putting pressure on pension and healthcare systems.
In 2022, Italy reported a record-low birthrate of 393,000, prompting Meloni to prioritize reversing this trend in 2024. The government has allocated €2.5 billion in the budget to address the issue and ensure a sustainable future for the country’s demographic landscape.
As Italy reflects on the remarkable life of Tripoli Giannini, his secrets to longevity serve as a testament to the resilience and wisdom gained from a century well-lived.