"Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

As a nation state, Italy has emerged only in 1871. Until then the country was politically divided into a large number of independant cities, provinces and islands. The currently available evidences point out to a dominant Etruscan, Greek and Roman cultural influence on today's Italians.
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"Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

Post by joetucciarone »

Is there a historian who can explain something on the 1862-1876 map of Italy? The following link opens the map at a place 5.5 kilometers southeast of Traetto, partway between Naples and Rome:

https://mapire.eu/en/map/europe-19centu ... Hr4fqtJbhk

In the center of the map is the word “Epitaffio” (an epitaph is a memorial inscription) on a bend of the Garigliano River. Could there have been an historical marker there when the map was made between 1862 and 1876? Garibaldi crossed the Garigliano in the fall of 1860, just a few years before this map was made. Could a marker have been erected to commemorate his crossing? The following Google map of the same area shows nothing but a race-course at the same location:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Italy ... 4d12.56738
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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

Post by MarcuccioV »

joetucciarone wrote: 10 May 2021, 16:29 Is there a historian who can explain something on the 1862-1876 map of Italy? The following link opens the map at a place 5.5 kilometers southeast of Traetto, partway between Naples and Rome:

https://mapire.eu/en/map/europe-19centu ... Hr4fqtJbhk

In the center of the map is the word “Epitaffio” (an epitaph is a memorial inscription) on a bend of the Garigliano River. Could there have been an historical marker there when the map was made between 1862 and 1876? Garibaldi crossed the Garigliano in the fall of 1860, just a few years before this map was made. Could a marker have been erected to commemorate his crossing? The following Google map of the same area shows nothing but a race-course at the same location:

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Italy ... 4d12.56738
I tried to focus in on the satellite image. Nothing that I can see on the Lazio side (Via Vettaglia) except what appear to be farm structures (outbuildings). It's possible the marker is there, close to the river, but either hidden by trees or deteriorated to the point it is no longer recognizable.

I suppose it's also possible in all those years a flood on the river destroyed the marker & it was never replaced.

You may on the right track as to it's origins, however. Seems an odd location for any other kind of marker...
Mark

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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

Post by joetucciarone »

Here's a 1944 WWII map, showing an "Epitaffio Farm" on the site of the 1862-1876 map:

http://www.wirksworth.org.uk/REG-15.jpg

Here's a January, 1944 map, another one from WWII, showing "Epitaffio" at the bend in the Garigliano River:

https://www.inniskillingsmuseum.com/wp- ... page-1.jpg
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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

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Here's an 1862 book, "A Handbook for Travellers in Southern Italy: Being a Guide for the Provinces Formerly Constituting the Continental Portion of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies":

https://books.google.com/books?id=poU2A ... &q&f=false

On pages 2-3, there's a description of travel from Mola to Itri. It says "A third horse from Mola to Itri, as far as the tomb of Cicero or L'Epitaffio, but not vice versa":

https://books.google.com/books?id=poU2A ... no&f=false

Conceivably, in 1862 after leaving Mola, you might go to the Garigliano River before turning northwest for the last 10 kilometers to Itri. So, could "Epitaffio" have been the tomb of Cicero?!
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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

Post by MarcuccioV »

joetucciarone wrote: 10 May 2021, 17:23 Here's an 1862 book, "A Handbook for Travellers in Southern Italy: Being a Guide for the Provinces Formerly Constituting the Continental Portion of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies":

https://books.google.com/books?id=poU2A ... &q&f=false

On pages 2-3, there's a description of travel from Mola to Itri. It says "A third horse from Mola to Itri, as far as the tomb of Cicero or L'Epitaffio, but not vice versa":

https://books.google.com/books?id=poU2A ... no&f=false

Conceivably, in 1862 after leaving Mola, you might go to the Garigliano River before turning northwest for the last 10 kilometers to Itri. So, could "Epitaffio" have been the tomb of Cicero?!
Seems doubtful. I'm sure such a marker would have been restored and be on a list of historical locations. Looks like only farms in the area now. I did find something that looks like a "stone storage yard" or something of that sort. Perhaps it refers to a stone mason that sculpted memorial markers..?

I found reference to some buried marble tombs along the Appian Way which may have been attributed to Cicero's daughter, but they are near Rome and not that far south.

Perhaps another Cicero of more local notariety..?
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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

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Mark - I agree. And, whatever "Epitaffio" was, it predates Garibaldi's 1860 crossing. I just found an Italian book published in 1754:

https://books.google.com/books?id=tUFgA ... navlinks_s

Here's a partial transcription from pages 476-477:

Da cio conobbi di feguir la medesima il suo corso per la destra riva del Garigliano; onde dentro di una barchetta feci condurmi allinsu di esso, per veder dove terminasse la via: e dopo due miglia di Cammino giunsi nel luogo chiamato l'Epitaffio, in cui il fiume quasi la meta si restringe, non essendo largo piu di palmi 110. e ivi dall'una, e l'altra sponda ritrovai i gran fondamenti del ponte, che lo traversava. Nomasi l'Epitaffio, per esservi fulla sinistra dalla parte di Sessa un alta mostra di fabbrica, in mezzo della quale stava il marmo colla inscrizione gia involato, privandone di una bella memoria; mentre necessariamente contener dovea la rifezione del ponte, fatto di legno . . . Per discender poi all'altra parte di Minturna di la dal Garigliano, eravi sulla sinistra riva un'altro. . . scaturisce dall'antica Citta di Ausonia, e si scarica nel Garigliano in piccola distanza dalla scafa: e in quello dall'una, e l'altra riva veggonsi i fondamenti dell'antico ponte di cento palmi di lunghezza da me misurati, corrispondendo la sua situazione in mezzo alla Citta di Minturna, e ivi l'Appia congiungeasi. Da cio conobbi di feguir la medesima il suo corso per la destra riva del Garigliano; onde dentro di una barchetta feci condurmi allinsu di esso, per veder dove terminasse la via: e dopo due miglia di Cammino giunsi nel luogo chiamato l'Epitaffio, in cui il fiume quasi la meta si restringe, non essendo largo piu di palmi 110. e ivi dall'una, e l'altra sponda ritrovai i gran fondamenti del ponte, che lo traversava. Nomasi l'Epitaffio, per esservi fulla sinistra dalla parte di Sessa un alta mostra di fabbrica, in mezzo della quale stava il marmo colla inscrizione gia involato, privandone di una bella memoria; mentre necessariamente contener dovea la rifezione del ponte, fatto di legno . . . Per discender poi all'altra parte di Minturna di la dal Garigliano, eravi sulla sinistra riva un'altro braccio di via selciata, che discovresi da dentro il fiume verso la meta del cammino dalla scafa all'epitaffio, dove avendo il corso dell'acqua corroso l'avelo, vi son molte selci cadute . . .

Google translates this to English:

From this I knew to follow its course along the right bank of the Garigliano; wherefore, inside a small boat, I had them lead me inside it, to see where the road ended: and after two miles of the Way I reached the place called the Epitaph, where the river almost narrows, not being more than 110 palms wide. and there, on both sides, I found the great foundations of the bridge which crossed it. Nomasi l'Epitaffio, for there was a tall exhibition of the factory on the left side of Sessa, in the middle of which stood the marble with the inscription already invaded, depriving it of a beautiful memory; while it must necessarily contain the reference of the bridge, made of wood. . . To then descend to the other part of Minturna di la dal Garigliano, there was another arm of paved road on the left bank, which leads from inside the river towards the halfway point from the hull to the epitaph, where, having the flow of water corroded the sky, there are many fallen flints. . .
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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

Post by MarcuccioV »

joetucciarone wrote: 10 May 2021, 18:15 Mark - I agree. And, whatever "Epitaffio" was, it predates Garibaldi's 1860 crossing. I just found an Italian book published in 1754:

https://books.google.com/books?id=tUFgA ... navlinks_s

Here's a partial transcription from pages 476-477:

Da cio conobbi di feguir la medesima il suo corso per la destra riva del Garigliano; onde dentro di una barchetta feci condurmi allinsu di esso, per veder dove terminasse la via: e dopo due miglia di Cammino giunsi nel luogo chiamato l'Epitaffio, in cui il fiume quasi la meta si restringe, non essendo largo piu di palmi 110. e ivi dall'una, e l'altra sponda ritrovai i gran fondamenti del ponte, che lo traversava. Nomasi l'Epitaffio, per esservi fulla sinistra dalla parte di Sessa un alta mostra di fabbrica, in mezzo della quale stava il marmo colla inscrizione gia involato, privandone di una bella memoria; mentre necessariamente contener dovea la rifezione del ponte, fatto di legno . . . Per discender poi all'altra parte di Minturna di la dal Garigliano, eravi sulla sinistra riva un'altro. . . scaturisce dall'antica Citta di Ausonia, e si scarica nel Garigliano in piccola distanza dalla scafa: e in quello dall'una, e l'altra riva veggonsi i fondamenti dell'antico ponte di cento palmi di lunghezza da me misurati, corrispondendo la sua situazione in mezzo alla Citta di Minturna, e ivi l'Appia congiungeasi. Da cio conobbi di feguir la medesima il suo corso per la destra riva del Garigliano; onde dentro di una barchetta feci condurmi allinsu di esso, per veder dove terminasse la via: e dopo due miglia di Cammino giunsi nel luogo chiamato l'Epitaffio, in cui il fiume quasi la meta si restringe, non essendo largo piu di palmi 110. e ivi dall'una, e l'altra sponda ritrovai i gran fondamenti del ponte, che lo traversava. Nomasi l'Epitaffio, per esservi fulla sinistra dalla parte di Sessa un alta mostra di fabbrica, in mezzo della quale stava il marmo colla inscrizione gia involato, privandone di una bella memoria; mentre necessariamente contener dovea la rifezione del ponte, fatto di legno . . . Per discender poi all'altra parte di Minturna di la dal Garigliano, eravi sulla sinistra riva un'altro braccio di via selciata, che discovresi da dentro il fiume verso la meta del cammino dalla scafa all'epitaffio, dove avendo il corso dell'acqua corroso l'avelo, vi son molte selci cadute . . .

Google translates this to English:

From this I knew to follow its course along the right bank of the Garigliano; wherefore, inside a small boat, I had them lead me inside it, to see where the road ended: and after two miles of the Way I reached the place called the Epitaph, where the river almost narrows, not being more than 110 palms wide. and there, on both sides, I found the great foundations of the bridge which crossed it. Nomasi l'Epitaffio, for there was a tall exhibition of the factory on the left side of Sessa, in the middle of which stood the marble with the inscription already invaded, depriving it of a beautiful memory; while it must necessarily contain the reference of the bridge, made of wood. . . To then descend to the other part of Minturna di la dal Garigliano, there was another arm of paved road on the left bank, which leads from inside the river towards the halfway point from the hull to the epitaph, where, having the flow of water corroded the sky, there are many fallen flints. . .
Sounds perhaps like it was likely a reference to the builders of this former bridge that crossed the river, most likely built in Roman times...
Mark

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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

Post by joetucciarone »

These are the five appearances of the word "epitaffio" in the 1754 book:

https://books.google.com/books?id=tUFgA ... io&f=false

Near the instance on page 416 are the phrases "morte di Cicerone" and "M. Tulli Cicero Ave."
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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

Post by joetucciarone »

Mark - your guess about the bridge was partially correct; an inscription was installed that recorded repairs to it. Here's a book that was published in 1819:

https://books.google.com/books?id=WrINA ... &q&f=false

On page 101 is a footnote that says: "The monument having the title of Epitaffio has been robbed of its inscription, which probably recorded, in the usual manner, the repairs done to the bridge by the Duke of Alcala, or some of the Aragonese kings, as some of their escutcheons still remain."

It seems that at least through World War II, the place was still known as "Epitaffio" in honor of the monument placed there to commemorate repairs to the bridge, possibly as far back as the Aragonese rule of the region in the 15th century.
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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

Post by MarcuccioV »

It sounds as if that is the answer. Very good research on your part, Joe..! I will only take credit for interjecting a little logic into the mix, LOL.. :wink:
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Re: "Epitaffio" on Garigliano River, 1862-1876

Post by joetucciarone »

The 1862 "A Handbook for Travellers" that mentions "tomb of Cicero or L'Epitaffio" is also referred to in the 1819 book ("A classical tour through Italy and Sicily"), which describes a "pyramidical building" near Formia as "the tomb of Cicero," and "the sepulchral edifice on the left of the road as his epitaffio." So, the instances of "epitaffio" and Cicero in the 1754 book probably relate to this area near Formia, which is 20 kilometers west of the Epitaffio site on the Garigliano.
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