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St. Patrick's Italian Ties

Letter to Newsday (New York), March 15, 2012

Erin go - brava? Actually, you don't have to sport a brogue or hail from County Cork to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. 'Tis a feast that's a tribute to Western civilization. And the scions of Italy should be among the joyous revelers.

Born of a noble family in Roman Britain's Bannaventa Berniae, the man who would become St. Patrick was the privileged son of Calpornius and Conchessa, Romans living in Britain. As a member of the Roman upper class, Patrick received a classical education: fluency in Latin, immersion in the history of the Caesars, and a devotion to Virgil's Aeneid. Archaeological evidence of a Roman base at Tipperary supports historians' claims that extensive trade and cultural links existed between Italy and Ireland. Moreover, the discovery of another fort at Drumanagh, north of Dublin, indicates an Italian presence between 79 and 182 AD.

Rosario Iaconis,
Chairman, Italic Institute of America
Mineola, NY

 
 
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