Squigy its like me saying if I am an eggplant then why is my color purple instead of brown. The southern region used to belong to Africa and Sicilians were once attached to Africa years ago, their skin color is naturally darker brown due to the sun and the culture where my family comes from we are all Olive complextion vs my cousins who live in Milano which their skin color is pure white like snow, they do not get the vitamin D like we get here, and that we stay out alot and do alot of things in the sun, outdoors. Vs those who stay inside alot
I am proud of my color... if god wanted me to be totally white he would have dropped diamonds on the ground for me to go out and pick them up.
It's an everything influence, really. Africa, Vikings, Greece ... everyone invaded southern Italy and left their DNA there at one point or another. My dad was very dark, my mom has Snow White coloring (blue-black hair before it went grey and porcelain skin). Her mom had grey eyes. All of us siblings are somewhere in the middle. My oldest brother lived in Saudi Arabia for a while and when he walked into a little shop once and spoke English, he was told, "Stop showing off, Masri (Egyptian). Speak Arabic." I used to get weird looks from the Sudanese guys at college because I was walking around with my hair showing and they could have sworn I was one of them.
And one of my cousins, just as southern Italian as me (more so actually since her maternal side was from Campania and mine is Abruzzese), had blue eyes and blond hair and was once told by a schoolteacher one time to go home and ask her parents if she was really Italian. It's all a big mishmash.
Southern Italians vary a lot in coloring. My mother's ancestors are 100% Sicilian, yet most of them are very white. My GM's sisters were so white they were practically translucent, while my GF's father had blue eyes and was called "Tedescu" ("German" in Sicilian). My mother had reddish hair, hazel eyes, freckles, and sunburned easily, as if she were Irish.
My family is also from Southern Italy (Calabria and Sicily). While somewhat dark skinned, many in my family have light green eyes. It would be interesting to know where their ancestors came from originally. Maybe one day I will be able to get a DNA test.
After reading these posts I feel the need to answer. I am a third generation American of Sicilian descent on all sides of my family. My immediate family, most of my relatives, and myself are light-skinned. I am not as fair as a red head but I don't tan easily in the summer and in fact burn as do my parents. I come from an Italian neighborhood where many southern Italians including those " Moorish" Sicilians are not olive or dark skinned. Yes there are those that are darker but not the quantity that many outsiders would like to believe. In fact I've known Sicilians who have light eyes and hair, myself being blond as a baby. Now don't get me wrong, I am not saying that being dark or darker is a negative thing but a fact is a fact and the appearance of Italians is not black and white. There is a huge gray area. It so irritates me when people who find out that I'm Italian- American ask me "where in Italy my ancestors came from" because I know that these people (mainly northern Europeans) are fishing around to see if I am a northern Italian because there image of southern Italians are those charcoaled characters on reality t.v. I don't mind being the "whitest" looking guy in the room, after all, my great-grandparents strived to be accepted in this country and my family and I will never and have never been eligible to receive minority benefits!
You know I was the first respondent to the original inquiry by some young lady many many years ago and I marvel that this subject has never died a peaceful death! I even remember describing that the original Hellenes were actually early Vikings penetrating the Mediterranean coming down the south flowing rivers of Scandinavia and northern Europe and settling inGreece. Peter
Vikings were sentby the Emperor Justinian with the famous Eastern Empire General Belisarius (his name is still being used in Italy as Belisario) who briefly rejoined the eastern and western Roman Empire for a brief period. In brief, the Vikings who had long known about the Roman empire used to come down the Volga and raid the eastern empire towns and cities were never vanquished but hired as the emperor's private prized legion and was sent along with General Belisarius which no doubt added to the Gene pool in Italy and wherever... Peter
I know what you mean but for some reason this is a topic that seems to creep up in the oddest places. Perhaps if we were a more 'silent' group where pop culture and the media didn't exploit us,it wouldn't be such a popular topic. I knew the Vikings invaded southern Italy a bunch of times but didn't know about the original Hellenes.
All I know is that Western Scandinavia Vikings are within our west European ken but there is a part of the Eastern Viking World that I know little about but recall reading about their journeys South thru the Balkans and Russia to the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. Peter