Maria Manciocco, 47, was reportedly attacked by her 53-year-old husband Eraldo Marchetti on Sunday morning in Segni, south-east of Rome.
An argument is thought to have erupted after Marchetti returned to the family home to pick up his belongings following the couple’s separation, Corriere della Sera reported.
The body of Manciocco, a nursery school teacher, was found by her nine-year-old twin boys.
“Mum’s not moving, come and help her!” one of the children reportedly screamed down the phone to his uncle, who called the emergency services. Manciocco died from head wounds shortly after being taken to hospital, Corriere said.
Neighbours told the newspaper they often heard arguments between Manciocco and Marchetti, who works at the nearby Moscardini di Frosinone military airport.
“She was a beautiful woman and he was probably very jealous,” a neighbour was quoted as saying.
Despite the Italian government taking steps last year to protect women in abusive relationships, violence against women continues to be a problem in the country.
Last month an Italian charity said that aside from the human costs, violence against women cost the state €17 billion a year in social services and other measures.
Following a visit to the country in 2012, Rashida Manjoo, the UN’s special rapporteur on violence against women, said there was silencing and invisibility surrounding the issue.
“Most manifestations of violence are under-reported in the context of a family-oriented and patriarchal society,” she said at the time, as such violence is often not perceived as a crime and Italians are pessimistic as to how helpful authorities are.