Famous Italians

Italian forgiveness quote from Tasso

April 30, 2011

There is an anecdote associated with one particular quote from Torquato Tasso’s epic poem Jerusalem Liberated (Gerusalemme Liberata). Carlo Goldoni (1707 – 1793), a great Italian playwright, was involved in a literary quarrel with Denis Diderot, famous French philosopher and writer. Their mutual friend Egidio Duni quoted two lines from Tasso’s poem (Diderot knew Italian […]

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Mascagni’s famous dedication to himself

April 20, 2011

In March 1900, Notes and queries, a veritable cornucopia of curiosities, published a brief note entitled “Dedication by Author to Himself”, which in turn quoted an announcement in the Corriere della Sera from 15-16 of January regarding Pietro Mascagni’s intent to dedicate his new opera Le Maschere to none other but himself: A me stesso, […]

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Enrico Caruso’s quote about the San Francisco earthquake of 1906

April 14, 2011

Enrico Caruso (1873 – 1921) a great Italian tenor is credited with one particular quote that I have not been able to authenticate thus far. In fact, I could not even locate an Italian version, but it is, of course, possible, that Caruso said this in English. Supposedly, after the singer had witnessed the devastation […]

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Leonardo Vinci’s Last Love

March 13, 2011

Leonardo Vinci (1690-1730), not to be confused with Leonardo da Vinci, was an Italian composer, known primarily for his operas, such as Li zite ‘ngalera, La festa di Bacco and others. Frederick Crowest in his ‘Musicians’ wit, humor & anecdote‘ relates a rumor of Leonardo’s death. Unreal and overstrained as many of the situations and […]

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Italian leather bags — birth of a legend (or legend of the birth)?

January 13, 2011

I just came across an interesting legend regarding the origins of Italian designer leather bag tradition. It is somewhat puzzling that thus far I cannot find any additional sources for this legend. All I have is an advertisement copy that was published in New York Magazine on Nov 3, 1980. Yet somehow the story rings […]

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