February 29, 2016

Photo of the Week: Statue of Charles V of Habsburg

Statue of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V of Habsburg sculpted by Vincenzo Gemito in a niche on the western facade of the Palazzo Reale di Napoli (Royal Palace of Naples) in the Piazza del Plebiscito (formally Largo del Palazzo Reale), Naples. Photo by New York Scugnizzo

February 27, 2016

Death For Five Voices

The Making of a New Musical Drama About Carlo Gesualdo, Renaissance Musician and Murderer
March 03, 2016 (6:00 PM )

In collaboration with the Bogliasco Foundation.

Composer/lyricist Peter Mills and writer/director Cara Reichel - both Bogliasco Foundation fellows - will discuss and preview their new work, a musical drama inspired by the life of the darkly talented Carlo Gesualdo, a prince, musician – and murderer – in Renaissance Naples.

The evening will feature a performance of several songs from the original score as well as a Q&A session with Mills and Reichel, founding members of the Prospect Theater Company.

Click here to read an article about Gesualdo from The New Yorker (Dec. 2011).

Casa Italiana Members may RESERVE a seat: Click here
Deadline: 24 hours prior to event start.
(For all other inquiries please call 212-998-8739)

Death for Five Voices, as all other events, is open to the general public, but members of Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò may reserve seats. Ten minutes before the event begins, all seats (including those that were reserved) will be available, first-come first-served, to anyone present.

In English

For more info visit Casa Italiana Zerilli-Marimò

February 26, 2016

Neo-Bourbons Gearing Up to Welcome TRH Prince Carlo and Princess Camilla di Borbone Delle Due Sicilie to New York City

Members and friends of the Committees of the Two Sicilies USA (Comitati Due Sicilie USA) are organizing a group to welcome Their Royal Highnesses Prince Carlo of Bourbon-Two Sicilies and Princess Camilla of Bourbon-Two Sicilies during their upcoming visit to the United Nations in New York City on March 4, 2016. Members and friends interested in participating may contact the Committee on Facebook for further information.

Also see:
Royal Visit to New York City
"UNWFPA's Humanitarian Award" to H.R.H. Princess Camilla of Bourbon Two Sicilies, Duchess of Castro

Announcing the 2016 Feast of Saint Joseph, Paterson, New Jersey


February 21, 2016

Photo of the Week: Statue of Alfonso V of Aragon

Statue of Alfonso the Magnanimous, King of Naples and Sicily sculpted by Achille D’Orsi in a niche on the western facade of the Palazzo Reale di Napoli (Royal Palace of Naples) in the Piazza del Plebiscito (formally Largo del Palazzo Reale), Naples. Photo by New York Scugnizzo

February 19, 2016

Sicilian Folk Dance & Frame Drumming Workshop

Tuesday, March 8 (8pm—12am)

Serena's Studios
939 8th Avenue
New York, NY 10019

Learn the unique traditions of Sicily: the tarantella and ballettu identified with Sicily wil be taught by noted performer, singer, percussionist, folklorist and folk dance educator Barabara Crescimanno. Immeditaely after, Michele Piccione, frame drum virtuoso, guitarist, zampognaro and ethnomusicologist will lead a workshop in the Sicilian frame drumming techniques in which are evidenced elements of various techniques of Southern Italy.

Space is limited - Tickets available in advance on Eventbrite

For more info visit Sicilian Folk Dance and Frame Drumming Workshop on Facebook

Compra Sud — Ferdinando's Focacceria

Photo by New York Scugnizzo
Let's support those who keep our traditions and folkways alive

Ferdinando's Focacceria
151 Union Street
Brooklyn, NY 11231
(718) 855-1545


Also see: A Piece of History at Ferdinando's Focacceria

Visit our Compra Sud Directory for complete listing

* Our recommendations will be unsolicited, and only from our personal experience. No second hand suggestions will be made.

February 17, 2016

Magna GRECE is Renamed Il Regno

Welcome to Il Regno, formally known as Magna GRECE. Why Il Regno? We thought the name change would better reflect our readership and what we stand for: An independent and sovereign Due Sicilie (pre-unification southern Italy) with strong cultural ties to the southern Italian diaspora communities.
The old name served us well over the past seven years, but times and conditions change and we felt this move was necessary. We're still adjusting the links, so there may be some difficulties reaching certain posts. We appreciate your patience during this process and apologize for any inconvenience.

February 16, 2016

Remembering Justice Antonin Scalia, 1936 - 2016

Justice Antonin Scalia, 1936 - 2016
Program moderated by Prof. Santi Buscemi
Thursday, February 18th, 6:30 P.M.
The Italian American Museum will host a program of remembrance for Justice Antonin Scalia on Thursday, February 18 at 6:30 P.M.  Justice Scalia was one of the most important and influential jurists in American history. A strict constructionist and originalist, Justice Scalia held to a judicial philosophy that changed the course and nature of American jurisprudence and legal scholarship.  His intelligence, wit, and especially his commitment to Constitution will influence generations of lawyers, public servants, and ordinary citizens for generations. The son of immigrants from Sicily and Campania, Justice Scalia made us all proud whether you were a Democrat, Republican, Liberal or Conservative, having been the first American of Italian descent to be appointed to the Supreme Court of the United States. Justice Scalia will be remembered for his eloquent and well thought out opinions.
Italian American Museum
155 Mulberry Street
New York, NY 10013

For reservations, call the Italian American Museum at 212.965.9000

February 15, 2016

Requiescat in pace, Justice Scalia

Antonin Gregory Scalia (March 11, 1936 — February 13, 2016)
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Justice Antonin Scalia. His passing is a great loss for this country, may he rest in peace.

Photo of the Week: Statue of Charles I of Anjou

Statue of Charles I of Anjou, King of Sicily sculpted by Tommaso Solari in a niche on the western facade of the Palazzo Reale di Napoli (Royal Palace of Naples) in the Piazza del Plebiscito (formally Largo del Palazzo Reale), Naples. 
Photo by New York Scugnizzo

February 14, 2016

Super Saturday at Forno Rosso

Juventus vs Napoli
A makeshift shrine to San Gennaro was erected on the bar
Photos by New York Scugnizzo
By Giovanni di Napoli
Spirits and expectations were high Saturday, for the highly anticipated showdown between Napoli and Juventus. We Napoli fans showed up in force at Forno Rosso Pizzeria (327 Gold Street) in Brooklyn, New York, to cheer our beloved Partenopei on, enjoy some camaraderie, and, naturally, eat our fill. 
The atmosphere in the restaurant was electric with excitement, equally as much for Chef Marrone’s special game day menu as for the match between these bitter rivals. Great food and drink (while watching a hard fought contest between two titans of Italian football) made for a very enjoyable evening. Sadly, the only thing missing was a Napoli victory. A late Juventus goal broke the deadlock, knocking the Vesuviani out of first place. 
Far from ruining the festivities, my friends and I relived the game over dessert and coffee while discussing what went wrong and predicting how we will finally overcome the wretched Old Lady. We can console ourselves with the knowledge that there are still thirteen games left (and 39 points up for grabs) in the campaign. We’re down, but not out. Our lads have a lot of character and will continue to fight for the Scudetto until the end. 
Special thanks to Chef Marrone and his hardworking staff for the warm hospitality, excellent service and, of course, delicious meal. You guys are the best!
Forza Napoli sempre!
Our pals Therese and Giuseppe proudly show their colors
(Above & below) Rowdy revelers are ready for an epic clash and fantastic dinner
(Above & below) Brooklyn tifosi show up in force to support their team

Diehard Napoli fans James and Anna are all smiles
(Above & below) Just some of the many different courses we enjoyed:
Fritto Misto (Panzarotti, Frittatina di pasta and Arancini)
Insalata Caprese, Piatti di Salumi and Burratina Pugliese
After a couple of delicious pasta dishes we had an assortment of pizza,
including this incredible Pizza Capricciosa
Also see:
Downtown Brooklyn’s Newest Hotspot

Feast of Sant'Antonino di Sorrento

Evviva Sant'Antonino!
Piazza Sant'Antonino, Sorrento
February 14th is the Feast Day of Sant'Antonino Abate (Saint Antoninus of Sorrento), protector of Campagna (SA) and Sorrento (NA). 
Born circa 550 AD in Campagna, a small town in the Province of Salerno, Sant'Antonino entered a local Benedictine monastery (some sources say it was the Abbey of Monte Cassino). Forced to flee due to pillaging Lombards, he withdrewto Castellammare di Stabia where he lived as a hermit on Monte Aureo (now Monte Faito), the highest peak of the Lattari Mountains. Following a vision, he erected a sanctuary on the mountain top in honor of Saint Michael the Archangel with the help of his friend Saint Catellus (San Catello Vescovo). Popular among the people of Sorrento, Sant'Antonino eventually succeededSaint Catellus as abbot of the Monastery of San Agrippino.
Sant'Antonino by Tommaso Solari
Piazza Tasso, Sorrento
Photos by New York Scugnizzo
Sant'Antonino is reputed to have performed many miracles, including saving Sorrento from Saracen attacks in 1354 and 1358. It is said that, according to his dying wishes, he was buried within the city's ancient walls, thus making them impregnable. During a Lombard attack, the section containing the saint's remains withstood the assault. Legend tells us that Prince Sicard of Benevento was haunted (and beaten!) in his dreams by Sant'Antonino's cudgel wielding apparition until he lifted the siege. 
The Saint, however, is best remembered for rescuing a young child from a giant cetacean. According to the legend, several children were playing along the seashore when a sea creature sprung up and swallowed the boy whole. The child's distraught mother immediately sought help from Antonino. A crowed followed the holy man to the coast, where he called on them to pray for the child's safety. Miraculously, the monster returned and immediately released the frightened, but unharmed, child from his gaping maw.
To commemorate the occasion I'm posting a Prayer to Sant'Antonino Abate. The accompanying photos were taken during my 2007 visit to Sorrento.
Prayer to Sant'Antonino Abate
Glorious San Antonino, beloved patron of Sorrento, you served God in humility and confidence on earth. In common supplication we turn to you, holy Father Antonino, our gentle patron, asking you to protect this city by the aid of your intercession. May its people be ever devoted to Christ and to you, by serving God and by loving and honoring you. Amen

Feast of San Valentino Martire

Evviva San Valentino!
February 14th is the Feast Day of San Valentino (Saint Valentine’s Day), Bishop and Martyr. He is the patron saint of happy marriages, love, courtship and beekeepers, as well as protector of citrus crops and protection against epilepsy and plague. Widely venerated across southern Italy, he is the principal patron of San Valentino Torio (SA), Vico del Gargano (FG), Abriola (PZ), San Valentino in Abruzzo Citeriore (PE) and Mafalda (CB), among others. To commemorate the occasion I’m posting a Prayer to Saint Valentine. The accompanying photo comes courtesy of Oratorio San Valentino Torio, Salerno.
Prayer to Saint Valentine
Dear Saint and glorious martyr, teach us to love unselfishly and to find great joy in giving. Enable all true lovers to bring out the best in each other. Let them love each other in God and in God in each other. Amen.

Happy Valentine's Day (Lupercalia)

Cupid with fish
Photo by New York Scugnizzo
In the spirit of Valentine's Day I'm posting New Moon (Luna nova)(1) by the great Neapolitan poet, Salvatore Di Giacomo (b.1860 — d.1934). The accompanying photo of the fountain of Cupid with a fish was taken at Dr. Axel Munthe’s Villa San Michele in Anacapri, Capri. Some believe Saint Valentine's Day sprung from the Roman Lupercalia (February 15th), an ancient festival of purification and fertility.
New Moon
A new moon rises on a fabled bay,
orbing a fishing boat in chased      silver;
a gathered net across bare      browned knees,
a young fisherman nods on      pillowed swells.

Ahoy! fisherman lad, stay awake!
Cast your net overboard, man the stout oars!

In this siren sea he sighs and dozes,
dreaming of his sweetheart who pines ashore;
a casual wake of the grey boat glows
phosphorescent, matching a lunar sky.

O jeweled moon, let him dream of love,
kiss him on the forehead with a beam.

As this fisherman lad sighs, so do you,
O Naples, blessed you are amid this beauty!
Some say you cry bitter tears in your sleep;
I have heard you cry, Naples! Wake up! Na…!

Alas, you dream among languorous isles,
Tiller unmanned, O Naples! Wake up! Na…!

(1) Reprinted from Salvatore Di Giacomo: Love Poems (A Selection), translated by Frank Palescandolo, Guernica, 1999, p.13

February 9, 2016

Feast of San Corrado di Baviera

San Corrado by Nicolò Scardigno
Photos by New York Scugnizzo
February 9th is the Feast Day of San Corrado di Baviera (St. Conrad of Bavaria), patron of Molfetta, Puglia. To commemorate the occasion I'm posting a prayer to San Corrado. The photo on the right was taken at Holy Face Monastery in Clifton, New Jersey. Unveiled on July 14, 2013, the statue was sculpted by Lyndhurst, New Jersey native Nicolò Scardigno in honor of his parents, Salvatore and Anna, who hail from Molfetta. The picture below was taken at the The Madonna Dei Martiri Social Club in Hoboken, New Jersey, where large numbers of immigrants from Molfetta settled and founded The Madonna Dei Martiri Society.
Preghiera a San Corrado Patrono di Molfetta
San Corrado, Madonna Dei Martiri
Social Club, Hoboken, New Jersey
Penitentissimo mio S. Corrado la divina provvidenza che vi chiamò da Francia in Palestina, e poi da terra Santa vi guidò fino a Bari, a singolarizzare con tanti lunghi pellegrinaggi, e con romitaggi sempre più aspri la vostra penitenza. Per quell'amore ardentissimo col quale visitaste quei Sacri luoghi, santificate colle pedate, coi sudori, e col sangue del Redentore, per quelle penitenze colle quali voleste divenire tutto somiglianti al Redentore Crocifisso; Per quell'affetto col quale emulaste le virtu, ed onoraste il sepolcro di S. Nicolò, impetratemi; vi supplico gratitudine di corrispondenza operative alle piaghe di Gesù Cristo vera contrizione dei miel peccati, e tempo e modo da farne dovuta penitenza.

Feast of San Sabino of Avellino

Viva San Sabino!
February 9th is the Feast of San Sabino di Avellino, Bishop of Abellinum and patron of Atripalda. To commemorate the occasion, I'm posting a Prayer to San Sabino.(1) The accompanying photo of the Saint was taken at Saint Lucy's Church, National Shrine of Saint Gerard in Newark, New Jersey.
Prayer to Saint Sabino
Lean down from Heaven our great protector St. Sabino, who from amongst all cities chose Atripalda as your last abode and final resting place. Here your holy bones still exude precious manna that assures us of your presence with us for all time. You have given your people copious graces and all who invoke your powerful name. We beg you, keep far from us all the divine punishments, render our fields fertile, keep the contagion of disease far from us, save us from earthquake and protect us from every evil, especially the evil of sin. Abundantly rain down your blessings upon us and our brothers who are far from us in America. Amen. 
(1) The Prayer to Saint Sabino was reprinted from the placard at the base of the statue.

February 8, 2016

The Search for our Ancestry (XXI)

Popular Genealogy Sites - Familysearch.org
By Angelo Coniglio
Previous columns have often referred to on-line sites that are helpful in genealogic research. There are dozens of such venues, and their offerings are updated constantly. One I’ve discussed frequently is ‘familysearch’, the Mormon site which has recently made many changes, so it’s worth another presentation.
The Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints church (LDS, or Mormon) advocates reverence for ancestors and holds a belief that well-documented ancestry can help insure family togetherness in the hereafter. Its members travel the world and make microfilm photocopies of all manner of original records from the United States and dozens of other nations: civil birth, marriage and death records; church baptism, marriage and death records; and so on. These microfilms are available to anyone, for rental and viewing at LDS FamilySearch Centers (FSCs), located in communities worldwide. Certain public libraries also support this process. The LDS has begun to ‘index’ information from these records, making their images available on-line, for free.
Whether a researcher plans to rent microfilms or to avail oneself of the free on-line information, he or she should become familiar with the LDS genealogy site here called https://familysearch.org/. To use the site, go to that web address. New users should immediately go to the upper right of the page, and click ‘Sign In’. This will lead you to a page where you may click on ‘Create a new account’ and register for free, with a username and password you will have to remember for future use.
Once you’ve signed in, you’ll see a colorful and somewhat ‘busy’ page with a number of options. A tempting choice is the one labeled ‘Family Tree’. Unless you’re an experienced researcher, I’d suggest that you ignore that option until you know more about your ancestors, and about the process of developing a family tree. My strong suggestion is to click on the link titled ‘Search’ at the top of the page. This will bring you to another page, https://familysearch.org/search, with a world map. On the map, click on the graphic of Europe. A list will pop up; select ‘Italy’. 
You’ll be presented with a list of the various types of searches for Italy. At the bottom of the page is an alphabetical listing of the records that are available on-line, in the format (Country) (Province) (Town), for example, ‘Italy, Caltanissetta, Caltanissetta’, meaning the records are for the province of Caltanissetta, filmed in the provincial capital city, also named Caltanissetta. If the locality of interest is not found in the listings of on-line records, you must search to see whether the LDS has microfilms of documents that have not yet been ‘indexed’ for on-line access. To do so, click on the ‘Search’ tap at the top of the page and from the drop-down menu select ‘Catalog’, which will take you to the ‘Family Search Catalog’. 
The catalog covers genealogical resources held by familysearch, the Salt Lake City https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/Family_History_Library \\ Family History Library Family History Library, and selected local https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/Introduction_to_LDS_Family_History_Centers \\ Introduction to LDS Family History Centers FamilySearch Centers (FSCs). It’s a guide to birth, marriage, and death records; census records; church registers; books; periodicals; family histories and many other records that contain genealogical information searchable online, on microfiche or microfilm, in books or computer files. This page also allows searching by ‘Place’, so you can enter the name of the town of interest directly, to see what records are available for it, whether on microfilm or on-line.
Many catalog entries on familysearch include images of records. When an image is available on-line, a camera icon will appear to the right of the microfilm note associated with that image. A record’s availability on microfilm is shown by an icon of a film reel. Most microfilm and microfiche records can be sent to your nearest https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/Introduction_to_LDS_Family_History_Centers \\ Introduction to LDS Family History Centers FSC. If the records are on-line, their ability to be viewed may vary.  The LDS is required to obtain permission to film records, which may be subject to rules set by a municipality, parish, archive, or even the Italian government. For this reason, some records may be viewed on-line on any home computer; some may be viewed on home computers if the user registers and signs on to familysearch; and some may be viewed only from computers at LDS FSCs. Further, those available on home computers can generally be printed out or downloaded, but there may be restrictions on printing or downloading from FSC computers.
Coniglio is the author of the book The Lady of the Wheel, inspired by his Sicilian research. Order the paperback or the Kindle version at http://bit.ly/SicilianStory. Coniglio’s web page at http://bit.ly/AFCGen has helpul hints on genealogic research. If you have genealogy questions, or would like him to lecture to your club or group, e-mail genealogytips@aol.com.

Photo of the Week: Statue of Frederick II of Hohenstaufen

Statue of Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II of Hohenstaufen sculpted by Emanuele Caggiano in a niche on the western facade of the Palazzo Reale di Napoli (Royal Palace of Naples) in the Piazza del Plebiscito (formally Largo del Palazzo Reale), Naples. Photo by New York Scugnizzo

February 7, 2016

Pipes, Poems and Passion: From Scotland to Sicily on the Wings of Love

Michela Musolino
Photo courtesy of Oscar Masicandaro
Sunday, February 14th
(3:00 PM to 5:00 PM)

The Luna Theater
620 S. 8th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

Nothing says unbridled passion like bagpipes; nothing says romance like poetry; and there's no better place on earth to combine the two than on the island of Sicily! Bring your squeeze to the most eclectic music show in Philly this season, with sounds from Celtic, French and Sicilian traditions, as well as Early Music selections.

Musicians: Charlie Rutan, Crista Patton, Michela Musolino, Lucas Mitsch, Phil Passantino and Jeffrey Panettieri.

Spoken/sung words: Michela Musolino.

Click here for ticket information and directions: Pipes Poems & Passion

Announcing the 2016 Feast of Santa Marina, Inwood, Long Island

For more info visit the Santa Marina Society of Inwood on Facebook
Also see:
A Look at the 2014 Feast of Santa Marina, Inwood, Long Island
Viva Santa Marina!

February 6, 2016

Compra Sud — Faicco's Pork Store, Brooklyn

Photo by New York Scugnizzo
Let's support those who keep our traditions and folkways alive

Faicco's Pork Store
6511 11th Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11219
(718) 236-0119

Visit our Compra Sud Directory for complete listing

* Our recommendations will be unsolicited, and only from our personal experience. No second hand suggestions will be made.

Announcing the 2016 Feast of Saint Anthony of Padua, Verona, New Jersey

Visit the St. Anthony of Padua Society of Verona, NJ on Facebook

February 5, 2016

Feast of Saint Agatha of Sicily

Saint Agatha, St. Joseph's Church
Long Island City, New York
Photo by New York Scugnizzo
By Giovanni di Napoli
February 5th is the Feast Day of Saint Agatha of Sicily, patroness of nurses, women with breast cancer and the victims of rape and torture. The protector of Catania, she is also invoked to guard against fire, volcanic eruptions and other natural disasters, the potential for which is ever present in the shadow of Mt. Etna. Agatha is also the patron Saint of Malta, where it is said that her intercession saved the Maltese from a Turkish invasion in 1551. 
Born in Catania (some say Palermo) to a wealthy family, Saint Agatha devoted her life to God. Also very beautiful she was sought-after by many suitors for marriage. Taking a vow of chastity the young maiden turned down all proposals. However, when the powerful Senator Quintianus was rebuked he vindictively threatened to denounce her as a Christian for disobeying Emperor Decius' edict on religious sacrifice. Standing firm against his threats and unwanted advances Agatha was arrested and condemned to the brothels. Continue reading

Announcing the 2016 Festa Della Donna Luncheon, Astoria, Queens

For more info call Sarah Tenaglia at 718-631-3630 or 347-256-3454

February 4, 2016

Sicily: Culture and Conquest Exhibit Coming to The British Museum

Photo courtesy of the British Museum
April 21 — August 14, 2016

The British Museum
Great Russell Street, London
WC1B 3DG, United Kingdom

Sicily has been shaped by waves of conquest and settlement by different peoples over 4,000 years. Since the 7th century BC, Phoenicians, Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, Arabs and Normans all settled or invaded the island, lured by its fertile lands and strategic location. Over time, this series of conquests forged a cultural identity unlike any other.

This exhibition tells Sicily’s fascinating stories – from the arrival of the Greeks and their encounters with the Phoenicians and other settlers, to the extraordinary period of enlightenment under Norman rule in the 11th to 13th centuries.

For much of its history, Sicily was admired and envied for its wealth, cultural patronage and architecture. In the exhibition, ancient Greek sculpture, architectural decorations from temples, churches and palaces, early coinage, stunning gold jewelry, and Norman mosaics and textiles demonstrate Sicily’s diversity, prosperity and significance over hundreds of years.

Discover an island with a cosmopolitan history and identity – a place where the unique mix of peoples gave rise to an extraordinary cultural flowering. The art and objects they produced are some of the most beautiful and important in the history of the Mediterranean.

February 3, 2016

Feast of San Biagio

Viva San Biagio!
February 3rd is the Feast Day of San Biagio (Saint Blaise), Bishop and Martyr. One of the Fourteen Holy Helpers, he is the Patron Saint of veterinarians and those who suffer from throat afflictions. He is also invoked against attacks by wild animals. Widely venerated across southern Italy, the great healer is the principal protector of Plaesano (RC), Maratea (PZ), Ruvo di Puglia (BA), Caronia (ME), Bronte (CT), Spezzano Sila (CS), Atena Lucana (SA), Avetrana (TA), and Verzino (KR), among others. To commemorate the occasion, I'm posting a Prayer to Saint Blaise. The accompanying photo was taken at the Shrine Church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
Prayer to Saint Blaise
O glorious Saint Blaise, who by your martyrdom left to the Church a precious witness to the Faith, obtain for us the grace to preserve within ourselves this divine gift, and to defend — without concern for human respect — both by word and example, the truth of that same faith, which is so wickedly attacked and slandered in these our times. You miraculously restored a little child who was at the point of death because of an affliction of the throat. Grant us your mighty protection in similar misfortunes. And, above all, obtain for us the grace of Christian mortification, together with faithful observance of the precepts of the Church, which keep us from offending almighty God. Amen.

February 2, 2016

Feast of the Madonna del Soccorso

Evviva Maria!
Photo by New York Scugnizzo
February 2nd is the Feast Day of the Madonna del Soccorso (Our Lady of Help), protectress of Sciacca (AG), Castellammare del golfo (TP), Regalbuto (EN) San Potito Ultra (AV) and San Severo (FG), among others. To commemorate the occasion I'm posting a Prayer to Our Lady of Perpetual Help. The accompanying photo of the Madonna del Soccorso was taken at the Italian American Museum (155 Mulberry Street) in Manhattan.
Prayer to Our Lady of Perpetual Help
Oh Mother of Perpetual Help, grant that I may ever invoke your powerful name, the protection of the living and the salvation of the dying. Purest Mary, let your name henceforth be ever on my lips. Delay not, Blessed Lady, to rescue me whenever I call on you. In my temptations, in my needs, I will never cease to call on you, ever repeating your sacred name, Mary, Mary. What a consolation, what sweetness, what confidence fills my soul when I utter your sacred name or even only think of you! I thank the Lord for having given you so sweet, so powerful, so lovely a name. But I will not be content with merely uttering your name. Let my love for you prompt me ever to hail you Mother of Perpetual Help. Mother of Perpetual Help, pray for me and grant me the favor I confidently ask of you. Amen.

February 1, 2016

Sunday of the Scarves

The War Against Neapolitan Identity Continues
Photo courtesy of www.calciomercato.napoli.it
By Giovanni di Napoli
As Partenopei fans filed into San Paolo Stadium on Sunday to see their beloved Napoli take on Empoli, authorities confiscated scarves bearing images of the Bourbon coat of arms. Inexplicably deemed “offensive,” stewards (with police support) at the Curva B entrance seized all scarves from men, women and children with the heraldic symbol of the pre-unification rulers of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies and deposited them (like our history) into trash bins.
In what now is being sarcastically called the “Sunday of the Scarves,” one cannot help but see the hypocrisy and double standards against the people of the south. Not only are the historical and traditional symbols of other regions (e.g. the Lion of Venice, the Fleur-de-Lys of Florence, the Capitoline Wolf of Rome, etc.) not being curtailed (nor should they), abusive and derogatory chants in the terraces aimed at southerners continue unabated. It would seem that the rediscovery of our particular historical and cultural heritage is considered more “offensive” than the insults regularly hurled at southerners.  
Perhaps its a good sign; local pride has seen such a dramatic rise in recent years that we can no longer just be ignored and ridiculed, now our symbols must be suppressed. This means the precarious facade is crumbling; the south is rising again. Now we need to start seeing our symbols appear at other stadiums and venues across the south. Napoli capitale nostra!
Graphic courtesy of New York Scugnizzo
* * *
For the record, Napoli beat the Tuscan side 5-1 and remain in first place in Serie A. They face Lazio next. Forza Napoli!
Also see:

Feast of San Trifone Martire

Martyrdom of Saint Gryphon, 
with Respicius and Nympha, 
Cathedral of Ravello 
Photo by New York Scugnizzo
February 1st is the Feast Day of San Trifone Martire (Saint Tryphon the Martyr), patron saint of gardeners and falconers. Venerated across southern Italy, he is the principal patron of Adelfia–Montrone (BA), Marzano di Nola (AV), Alessano (LE) and Pulsano (TA), among others. Major celebrations are held in his honor (e.g. in Adelfia) on November 10th, recalling the translation of his sacred relics from Kotor, Montenegro, to Rome in the tenth century. Over the years, his relics have found their way to several locations throughout southern Italy, including Ravello (SA), Altilia (KR) and Cerignola (FG).
To commemorate the occasion, I'm posting a Prayer to Saint Tryphon, Respicius and Nympha. The accompanying photo of the Martyrdom of Saint Tryphon, with Respicius and Nympha was taken during my 2010 pilgrimage to the Duomo at Ravello. Evviva San Trifone!
Prayer to Saint Tryphon, Respicius and Nympha
Grant, O Lord, we pray thee: that, as by the prayers of thy blessed Martyrs, Tryphon, Respicius, and Nympha, we do feel the effectual succor of thy protection; so we may at all times devoutly observe their festival. Who liveth and reigneth with God the Father and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen

Photo of the Week: Statue of Roger I, the Norman

Statue of Roger I, Great Count of Sicily sculpted by Emilio Franceschi in a niche on the western facade of the Palazzo Reale di Napoli (Royal Palace of Naples) in the Piazza del Plebiscito (formally Largo del Palazzo Reale), Naples. 
Photo by New York Scugnizzo

New Books

Some new and forthcoming titles that may be of interest to our readers. All are available at Amazon.com

Oscan in the Greek Alphabet by Nicholas Zair

Publisher: Cambridge University Press; 1 edition
Publication Date: January 22, 2016
Hardcover: $99.99
Language: English
Pages: 258

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Sicily's Rebellion Against King Charles: The Story of the Sicilian Vespers by Louis Mendola

Publisher: Trinacria Edition
Publication Date: April 25, 2016
Paperback: $36.00
Language: English
Pages: 260

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Dangerous Perfection: Ancient Funerary Vases from Southern Italy edited by Ursula Kästner and David Saunders

Publisher: J. Paul Getty Museum; 1 edition
Publication Date: June 18, 2016
Hardcover: $60.00
Language: English
Pages: 176

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