Prime Minister of Italy

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President of the Council of Ministers of Italy
Presidente del Consiglio dei Ministri della Repubblica Italiana
Flag of prime minister of Italy.svg
Flag of the President of the Council of Ministers
Matteo Renzi November 2014.jpg
Matteo Renzi

since 22 February 2014
Style President of the Council
(formal)</ref> Premier
(form of address)</ref>
Member of Government
Supreme Council of Defence [1]
European Council
Residence Palazzo Chigi
Seat Rome
Appointer President of the Republic
Term length 5 years
Inaugural holder Camillo Benso di Cavour
Formation 17 March 1861
Emblem of Italy.svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Foreign relations
Count Camillo Benso of Cavour, first Italian Prime Minister.
Benito Mussolini, longest-serving Prime Minister of Italy and Duce of Fascism.
Alcide De Gasperi, first Prime Minister of the Republic.

The Prime Minister of Italy, officially the President of the Council of Ministers of the Italian Republic (Italian: Presidente del Consiglio dei Ministri della Repubblica Italiana) is the head of government of the Italian Republic. Prior to the establishment of the Italian Republic, the title was historically literally called "President of the Council of Ministers of the Kingdom of Italy" (Presidente del Consiglio dei ministri del Regno d'Italia). From 1925 to 1943 during the Fascist regime, the position was transformed into the dictatorial position known as the Head of Government and Duce of Fascism held by Benito Mussolini who officially governed on the behalf of the King of Italy. King Victor Emmanuel III removed Mussolini from office in 1943 and the position was restored with Marshal Pietro Badoglio becoming Prime Minister in 1943. Alcide De Gasperi became the first Prime Minister of the Italian Republic in 1946.

The prime minister is the President of the Council of Ministers—which holds effective executive power— and he must receive a vote of approval from it to execute most political activities. The office is similar to those in most other parliamentary systems, but the leader of the Italian government is not authorized to request the dissolution of the Parliament of Italy.

The office was established by Articles 92 through to 96 of the current Constitution of Italy. The prime minister is appointed by the President of the Republic after each general election. Commonly referred to in Italy as premier, the right title of the office holder is Presidente del Consiglio dei Ministri, or just Presidente del Consiglio. The formal Italian order of precedence lists the office as being ceremonially the fourth most important Italian state office.


The office was first established in 1848 in Italy's predecessor state, the Kingdom of Sardinia—although it was not mentioned in the constitution, the Albertine Statute. The candidate for office was appointed by the king, and presided over a very unstable political system. In its first 60 years of existence (1861-1921), Italy changed its prime minister 37 times. Regarding this situation, the first goal of Benito Mussolini, appointed in 1922, was to abolish the Parliament's ability to put him to a vote of no confidence, thus basing his power on the will of the king and the National Fascist Party alone. With the proclamation of the Italian Republic in 1946, the office received constitutional recognition and 27 men have formed 64 governments in the past 68 years.


In addition to powers inherent in being a member of the cabinet, the prime minister holds specific powers, most notably being able to nominate a list of cabinet ministers to be appointed by the President of the Republic and the countersigning of all legislative instruments having the force of law that are signed by the President of the Republic.

Article 95 of the Italian constitution provides that "the prime minister directs and coordinates the activity of the ministers". This power has been used to a quite variable extent in the history of the Italian state, as it is strongly influenced by the political strength of individual ministers and thus by the parties they represent.

Often the prime minister's activity consists more in mediating between the various parties in the majority coalition, rather than directing the activity of the Council of Ministers. The prime minister's supervisory power is further limited by the lack of any formal authority to fire ministers, although a cabinet reshuffle (rimpasto), or sometimes even an 'individual vote of no confidence' on the part of Parliament, may in practice provide a surrogate measure.


Kingdom of Italy (1861-1946)[edit]

Alcide De Gasperi Ferruccio Parri Ivanoe Bonomi Pietro Badoglio Benito Mussolini Luigi Facta Ivanoe Bonomi Giovanni Giolitti Francesco Saverio Nitti Vittorio Emanuele Orlando Paolo Boselli Antonio Salandra Giovanni Giolitti Luigi Luzzati Sidney Sonnino Giovanni Giolitti Sidney Sonnino Alessandro Fortis Tommaso Tittoni Giovanni Giolitti Giuseppe Zanardelli Giuseppe Saracco Luigi Pelloux Antonio Starabba, Marchese di Rudinì Francesco Crispi Giovanni Giolitti Antonio Starabba, Marchese di Rudinì Francesco Crispi Agostino Depretis Benedetto Cairoli Agostino Depretis Benedetto Cairoli Agostino Depretis Marco Minghetti Giovanni Lanza Federico Luigi, Conte Menabrea Urbano Rattazzi Bettino Ricasoli Alfonso Ferrero La Marmora Marco Minghetti Luigi Carlo Farini Urbano Rattazzi Bettino Ricasoli Camillo Benso, Count of Cavour

Italian Republic (1946-present)[edit]

Matteo Renzi Enrico Letta Mario Monti Silvio Berlusconi Romano Prodi Silvio Berlusconi Giuliano Amato Massimo D'Alema Romano Prodi Lamberto Dini Silvio Berlusconi Carlo Azeglio Ciampi Giuliano Amato Giulio Andreotti Ciriaco De Mita Giovanni Goria Amintore Fanfani Bettino Craxi Amintore Fanfani Giovanni Spadolini Arnaldo Forlani Francesco Cossiga Giulio Andreotti Aldo Moro Mariano Rumor Giulio Andreotti Emilio Colombo Mariano Rumor Giovanni Leone Aldo Moro Giovanni Leone Amintore Fanfani Fernando Tambroni Antonio Segni Amintore Fanfani Adone Zoli Antonio Segni Mario Scelba Amintore Fanfani Giuseppe Pella Alcide De Gasperi

Living former Prime Ministers[edit]

There are ten living former Italian Prime Ministers:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ The Art.87 of the Constitution enstablished the Supreme Council of Defence. The Prime Minister is part of it as Vice-President
  2. ^ Comitato interministeriale per la sicurezza della Repubblica. (Intelligence)

External links[edit]