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History
The name Italia, probably a Graecized form of Italic Vitelia (='calf land'), was originally restricted to the southern half of the 'toe' but was gradually extended. By 450 B.C. It meant the region subsequently inhabited by the Bruttii; by 400 it embraced Lucania as well. Campania was included after 325, and by Phyrhus' day Italia as a geographical expression meant everything south of Liguria and C...
Genealogy
The typical Italian lineage dates from circa 1600, and for most of us that's reasonably profound. But who wants to be "typical" when you might be able to trace a lineage into the 1500s or even into the Middle Ages? Because success in this field requires practice and perseverance, as well as skills more specialized than those needed to perform research in modern records, very few genealogists are i...
Genealogy
In its most general sense, the term genealogy refers to the study of family history, while encompassing such related fields as ethnology, onomatology and --in rather few cases-- heraldry. It is important to bear in mind that genealogy forms part of the framework of general history. The best genealogist is a competent historian, but also a good detective. While a knowledge of such topics as kinship...
Culture & Traditions
November 2nd is All Souls' Day,a Catholic feast dedicated to the memorial of the dead which, according to tradition, can be dated back to ancient times.This day, in almost every country, the dead are remembered with different rituals and customs, yet the aim is just one: give some consolation to the souls of the dead. Although the tradition might give just as much, or even more, consolation to the...
Genealogy
Contrary to popular belief, not all Italian given names have Christian or classical roots. Many names encountered in older records are almost whimsical, and some cannot be translated into Latin or any other language. In order to avoid possible mistranscription of a given name with which the researcher may be unfamiliar, it is helpful to know some of these names, or in most cases at least the onoma...
Culture & Traditions
An Italian novel for kids called "La Freccia Azzurra" (The Blue Arrow) says that all the children in the world wait for Christmas Eve to get presents from Santa Clause, but Italian kids are the luckiest in the world because they get presents again on the 6th of January by the Befana.Who is the Befana? She's an old woman, looking like a witch, who flies on a broom in the night between the...


Onomastico

Yesterday : s. Policarpo di Smirne Today : s. Edilberto Tomorrow : s. Cesario