Question on surname pronounciation (american way)

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Thatgenealogykid
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Question on surname pronounciation (american way)

Postby Thatgenealogykid » 15 Oct 2014, 22:52

Okay, so I want to find records, since my italian branch is biological from an adoption. And I've adked family about it. Anyways, the surname is pronounced(as an american would say "buh-lah-tee". What surnames (in an american pronounciation) would fit that pronounciation? Also, would bilotta be a possible spelling? Because people reccomended that.

So, can you guys list surnames that would fit my criteria and thus, research?

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Re: Question on surname pronounciation (american way)

Postby Anizio » 15 Oct 2014, 23:31

Balatti sounds most accurate, a fairly uncommon surname found primarily in the Sondrio and Lecco provinces of Italy (Lecco records can be found online from 1866-1910 I think; and if you give me the first name and/ore date I can see what I can find).

There is also Ballati which though it looks similar is an entirely different name, even less common, and found primarily in the city of Pistoia in Tuscany.

Those two seem to fit perfectly, after that we start getting into less likely names:

Bolatti: an extremely rare name found in the city of Rome;
Bollati: a somewhat common name found throughout the regions of Lombardy and Piedmont;
Bellati: a name found mostly throughout western Lombardy;
Belletti: a very common name found throughout Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy, and Piedmont

longshots could be:

Balatri: another extremely rare name found in Tuscany;
Bulanti: another uncommon name from Sondrio province.

Thats all I can think of right now without knowing exactly how much the pronunciation was mangled.

If you know his first name by birth you might be able to find something, or his date of birth, but it will take time since you don't know the exact surname.

EDIT: also, Bilotta is not even close. It may have just been suggested because its a name those people already knew. Keep in mind Italy has the most different surnames of any culture in the world - this can make it easier and harder depending on the circumstance.
TIP: When asking for records from Italy, do NOT ask for an "estratto." ALWAYS ask for a "copia integrale." A photocopy of the original Act will contain more information

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Re: Question on surname pronounciation (american way)

Postby PeterTimber » 15 Oct 2014, 23:56

The Italian surname dictionary does not have one listing of ANY based surname for BILOTTI or its variants,derivations or alterations such as what you have listed and suggests they are all local in origin based upon local occupations, nicknames =first names and become last names over time, result of discourse, comedy or even jokes. The closest for the BA-BE-BI-BO-BU- is part of a mix of numerous other variants, alterations and derivations in the base surname BELLI. Thus your "slice" among many shows up as Bellati, bellato,belliato,belluta,bellotti,beloti,belotto,bellotta,bellettini,belletti and so forth. The bi version, no doubt derived from the be spellings, is just a continuation of BELLI variations,derivations and alterations. Peter
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Thatgenealogykid
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Re: Question on surname pronounciation (american way)

Postby Thatgenealogykid » 16 Oct 2014, 00:14

Anizio wrote:Balatti sounds most accurate, a fairly uncommon surname found primarily in the Sondrio and Lecco provinces of Italy (Lecco records can be found online from 1866-1910 I think; and if you give me the first name and/ore date I can see what I can find).

There is also Ballati which though it looks similar is an entirely different name, even less common, and found primarily in the city of Pistoia in Tuscany.

Those two seem to fit perfectly, after that we start getting into less likely names:

Bolatti: an extremely rare name found in the city of Rome;
Bollati: a somewhat common name found throughout the regions of Lombardy and Piedmont;
Bellati: a name found mostly throughout western Lombardy;
Belletti: a very common name found throughout Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy, and Piedmont

longshots could be:

Balatri: another extremely rare name found in Tuscany;
Bulanti: another uncommon name from Sondrio province.

Thats all I can think of right now without knowing exactly how much the pronunciation was mangled.

If you know his first name by birth you might be able to find something, or his date of birth, but it will take time since you don't know the exact surname.

EDIT: also, Bilotta is not even close. It may have just been suggested because its a name those people already knew. Keep in mind Italy has the most different surnames of any culture in the world - this can make it easier and harder depending on the circumstance.


I'm searching bellotti and bilotti. So any similar to that?

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Re: Question on surname pronounciation (american way)

Postby Anizio » 16 Oct 2014, 00:20

Bellotti is a very common name in Lombardy, Emilia-Romagna, and Piedmont.
If thats what you are searching and you're doing it without specific dates or town names, it'll take you a lifetime.

Bilotti is an uncommon name, statistically your best bet would be to look in Giffoni Valle Piana, Salerno, Campania as that is the town where it is most common.

Other than the names I already listed (and I would definitely argue buh-lah-tee is Ba-la-ti); I think that generally covers it. You can play around with changing the last letter to an A or O but then those are totally different surnames which sound nothing alike.

If you want to go by sound, the two you listed and the one's I listed cover the field pretty good.

But honestly, if you don't have either his first name at birth AND year of birth, or his year of birth AND town, or at least his exact date of birth, you are likely to find a person who is not actually your great-grandfather - and you wouldn't want to look into someone else's genealogy for years by mistake.
TIP: When asking for records from Italy, do NOT ask for an "estratto." ALWAYS ask for a "copia integrale." A photocopy of the original Act will contain more information

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Re: Question on surname pronounciation (american way)

Postby Italysearcher » 16 Oct 2014, 09:59

Since your ancestor who had that name was a foundling it could well be none of the above, just an invented surname based on the whim of the clerk who registered the birth.
If you have his birth record you will have the correct spelling and members of the board can give you the correct Italian pronunciation.
You need to begin in America and get his naturalization papers which will give you his immigration details. If you can find the ship manifest you will (should) have the correct spelling and the name of the birth (or residence) town.
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