II., Pope. Niccolo' 'Nicholas' b. 1010 d. July 27, 1061 Pope. A Burgundian named Gerard, who at the time of his election was bishop of Florence. In his short pontificate (1058 to 1061) Niccolo' II did much. He renewed the election decrees in 1061. He condemned Berengarius, a Frenchman who denied transubstantiation. He fostered reform by means of energetic legates; and he made Hildebrand, reform's greatest champion, archdeacon of the Roman church. (Bio by: MC) Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Città Metropolitana di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Algarotti, Francesco b. December 11, 1712 d. May 3, 1764 Philosopher, Art Critic. Born into a privileged Venetian family, Algarotti studied in Rome, Bologna, Florence and Paris before settling in London in 1744 where he became a member of the Royal Society, officially known as The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge. He studied and wrote on topics from classical literature and paintings, science, language, architecture to opera. His major works included "Newtonianism for Ladies," "Dialogue on Light and Color," "Travels in Russia,"...[Read More] (Bio by: Samuel Taylor Geer) Campo Santo Cemetery, Pisa, Provincia di Pisa, Toscana, Italy
Alighieri, Dante [cenotaph] b. May 22, 1265 d. September 14, 1321 Author. Born Durante Alighieri in Florence, Italy the son of Alighiero di Bellincione Alighieri, a notary, and his first wife. His studies included rhetoric, grammar, philosophy, literature , theology, philosophy, and theology. In 1293 he joined the guild of physicians and apothecaries in order to gain entry into the political life of the city. About that same year he published 'Vita Nuova' a combination of lyrical verse and poetic prose telling the story of his love for Beatrice. About 1295 he...[Read More] (Bio by: Iola) Basilica di Santa Croce, Florence, Città Metropolitana di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Annigoni, Pietro b. June 7, 1910 d. October 28, 1988 Artist. A native of Milan, Italy, he is most notable for his portrait paintings of beggars, and for his 1955 portrait of Queen Elizabeth II, which has been used on several colonial banknotes including the 1968 Rhodesian note. His portrait of Queen Elizabeth II hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in London, England. Known for his style of Italian Renaissance, he was a contrast to the modernist and post-modernist artistic styles of the middle and late 20th century. Among his other works was...[Read More] (Bio by: K) Cimitero Monumentale di San Miniato al Monte, Florence, Città Metropolitana di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Antonelli, Cardinal. Ferdinando Giuseppe b. July 14, 1896 d. July 12, 1993 Roman Catholic Cardinal. A native of Subbiano, Ferdinando Giuseppe Antonelli entered the Franciscan Order in Florence at the early age of thirteen in 1909. After rendering military service during the Great War, he pursued his studies in Rome at the Pontifical Antonianum Athenaeum and later at the Pontifical Institute of Christian Archaeology, where he was ordained priest in July 1922. Joining the teaching staff of the named Athenaeum in 1928, his presence lasted up to 1965, during which period...[Read More] (Bio by: Eman Bonnici) Santuario Francescano della Verna, Arezzo, Provincia di Arezzo, Toscana, Italy Plot: Cappella della Pietà.
Bacci, Cardinal. Antonio b. September 4, 1885 d. January 20, 1971 Roman Catholic Cardinal. Considered by many as the greatest Latin prodigy of the twentieth century, Giugnola born Antonio Bacci entered seminary in Florence and was ordained priest there on August 9, 1909. Faculty member and spiritual director of the named seminary between 1910 and 1922, an expert Latinist as he was, Bacci was appointed staff member of the Secretariat of State of the Vatican City in 1922, serving as the longtime secretary of Briefs to the Princes between 1931 and 1960, holding...[Read More] (Bio by: Eman Bonnici) Chiesa Parrocchiale di Giugnola, Giugnola, Città Metropolitana di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Baker, Addison Earl [memorial] b. January 1, 1907 d. August 1, 1943 World War II Congressional Medal of Honor recipient. Born in Chicago, Illinois, he was a National Guard officer who had been called to active duty in 1940. By 1943, he was a Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army Air Corps and commander of the 93rd Heavy Bombardment Group, Eighth Air Force, assigned to Benghazi, North Africa. It was from this point that he led his group as part of a daring low level attack against enemy oil refineries and installations at Ploesti, Romania, on August 1, 1943. Approaching...[Read More] (Bio by: John "J-Cat" Griffith) Florence American Cemetery and Memorial, Florence, Città Metropolitana di Firenze, Toscana, Italy Plot: Body was never recovered.
Balbo, Italo b. June 6, 1896 d. June 28, 1940 Italian Air Force General. Member of the Grand Council of Fascism, he became Minister of Aeronautics and Governor General of Libya during the Benito Mussolini fascist regime. For him was set up a special rank of the Royal Italian Air Force, Maresciallo Dell'aria (Marshal of the Air Force). Son of Camillo Balbo and Malvina Zuffi, both elementary school teachers, he grew up in a family where there was a absolute respect for the monarchy and military institutions. After his birth, family Balbo...[Read More] (Bio by: Ruggero) Cimitero degli Atlantici, Grosseto, Provincia di Grosseto, Toscana, Italy
Bartolucci, Cardinal. Domenico b. May 7, 1917 d. November 11, 2013 Roman Catholic Cardinal. He was a prolific music composer and the former conductor of the Vatican's Sistine Chapel Choir better known as his title of the Director Master of the Pontifical Musical Chorus of the Sistine Chapel, from 1956 to 1997. Some of his pieces have been played at the Vatican in the celebrations of the Popes. He was honoured by Pope Benedict XVI for his longtime service to the Church by the bestowal of the red hat of a Cardinal in 2010, when he was 93. (Bio by: Errete) Pieve di Santa Maria a Montefloscoli, Palaia, Provincia di Pisa, Toscana, Italy Plot: Centro del Pieve
Bastianini, Ettore b. September 24, 1922 d. January 25, 1967 Opera singer. Originally trained as a bass, but his voice teacher recognizing the tremendous ease, power, and beauty if his upper range, convinced him in 1951 to retrain as a baritone. In 1953 he sang in Turin in his first appearance as 'Gerard' in Giordano’s "Andrea Chenier" and then, in December of that same year, he was heard at the old Metropolitan Opera in New York as the elder Germont in Verdi’s "Traviata." He had a very short but intense career (just over 10 years), at the Teatro alla...[Read More] (Bio by: tkejumbo) Church of San Domenico, Siena, Provincia di Siena, Toscana, Italy
Benelli, Cardinal. Giovanni b. May 12, 1921 d. October 26, 1982 Roman Catholic Cardinal. Poggiole di Vernio born Giovanni Benelli was the youngest of the five surviving children of Luigi Benelli and Maria Simoni. His uncle, Friar Guido Benelli entered the Order of Franciscan Friars Minor and died with fame of holiness. Entering seminary in Pistoia on October 18, 1931, he later moved to Rome to further studies at the Pontifical French Seminary, the Pontifical Gregorian University and the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy. Ordained priest on October 21, 1943...[Read More] (Bio by: Eman Bonnici) Cathedral of Florence, Florence, Città Metropolitana di Firenze, Toscana, Italy Plot: Archbishopric Crypt Beneath The Chapel Of The Most Blessed Sacrament.
Berio, Luciano b. October 24, 1925 d. May 27, 2003 Composer. He was considered Italy's foremost composer of the late 20th century. He also conducted many of the major orchestras in Europe, the United States, Israel and Japan. He was particularly noted for innovations in electronic music. Upon winning the 1990 Wolf Prize for the arts, the selection committee hailed him as "one of the greatest composers of our generation whose new ideas, in an age of devaluation of human values, help to unify nations, cultures and generations." (Bio by: Ron Moody) Radicondoli Cemetery, Radicondoli, Provincia di Siena, Toscana, Italy
Bertoli, Cardinal. Paolo b. February 1, 1908 d. November 8, 2001 Roman Catholic Cardinal. A native of Poggio Garfagnana, Paolo Bertoli received his education at the Diocesan Seminary of Lucca, the Pontifical Roman Seminary, from where he obtained his doctorates in philosophy and theology and later at the Pontifical Roman Athenaeum S. Apollinare, from where he earned a doctorate in utroque iure, in both canon and civil laws. Ordained priest on August 15, 1930 in Lucca, he was named attaché and auditor of the nunciature in Yugoslavia in 1933, receiving the...[Read More] (Bio by: Eman Bonnici) Cimitero di Poggio Garfagnana, Poggio, Provincia di Lucca, Toscana, Italy Plot: Family Chapel.
Betti, Cardinal. Umberto b. March 7, 1922 d. April 1, 2009 Roman Catholic Cardinal. A native of Pieve Santo Stefano, Umberto Betti joined the Franciscan Order at an early age, beginning his novitiate year on July 23, 1937 through the province of San Francesco Stigmatizzato of Tuscany. Making his simple profession on August 2, 1938, he took his solemn bows on December 31, 1943 and was ordained priest on May 4, 1946. Professor of dogmatic theology in the Franciscan province of Tuscany between 1949 and 1963, he obtained a doctorate in the said subject in...[Read More] (Bio by: Eman Bonnici) Santuario Francescano della Verna, Arezzo, Provincia di Arezzo, Toscana, Italy
Boccaccio, Giovanni b. June 16, 1313 d. December 21, 1375 Author. The illegitimate son of a French noblewoman and a merchant from Florence, he became one of the most prolific writers of the late Middle Ages, best-known today for "The Decameron", which consists of 100 stories told over ten days, by seven young women and three young men who have taken a short respite from their native city Florence, which is in the throes of the Black Death. Boccaccio was close friends with the writer and thinker Petrarch, and was also very influenced in his writings by...[Read More] (Bio by: Carrie-Anne) Church of Saints Jacopo and Filippo, Città Metropolitana di Firenze, Toscana, Italy
Boccherini, Luigi b. February 19, 1743 d. May 28, 1805 Composer, Cellist. A very popular musician of his era, he was influential in bringing the cello to prominence as both a solo and chamber instrument. The "Minuet" from his String Quintet in E, Op. 11, No. 5 (1775), is one of the most familiar melodies in all Classical music. Luigi Rodolfo Boccherini was born in Lucca, Italy, the son of a doublebass player. He perfected his virtuoso skills as a cellist at St. Peter's in Rome and then went on extensive concert tours of Europe, accompanied by...[Read More] (Bio by: Bobb Edwards) Chiesa di San Francesco, Lucca, Provincia di Lucca, Toscana, Italy
Bonaparte, Julie b. December 26, 1771 d. April 7, 1845 Queen of Naples and Spain. Julie Clary was born in Marseille, France, the daughter of François Clary, a wealthy silk manufacturer and merchant, and his wife Françoise Rose Somis. The Clary sisters had ties to the Bonaparte family before their ascent to power, sister Desiree was engaged to Joseph Bonaparte before moving on to his brother Napoleon. Joseph married her sister Marie-Julie Clary instead on August 1, 1794 at Cuges. They had three daughters Julie Josephine Bonaparte who died as an...[Read More] (Bio by: Paul S.) Basilica di Santa Croce, Florence, Città Metropolitana di Firenze, Toscana, Italy