Unnamed individuals in Termini Imerese who were baptized at San Nicola

Among 35 entries in Codex A, the name of the person being baptized is lacking. One reason for this might be oversight. In fact, when oversight is involved, the missing name is usually inserted at the end of the entry, instead of being in the usual third position after the father. Perhaps some of these entries are indicative of stillborn babies. On the other hand, it might be that such entries are those of slaves who already had the name of a Catholic saint. But one cannot dismiss the possibility of anonymity being an important factor for one’s slaves, especially those unfortunates who were being held in captivity for eventual sale, but who had to be baptized in order to remain on Sicilian soil for any length of time. A year by year tally of these unnamed individuals follows:

1542: 8

1543: 14

1544: 7

1545: 5

1546: 1

Examples:

Un figlio senza nome di Giovanni Antonio Sant’angelo

Un figlio senza nome di Filippo la Vaccara

Figlio di Gillio Bergaglia

Figlio di Angelo di Foti

Even more astounding are five fathers whose names are not recorded at all. Are these barons, priests, or members of mendicant orders who did not want to reveal themselves? The year by year tally follows:

1543: 3

1544: 1

1545: 1

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Published on July 26, 2009 at 1:43 pm  Leave a Comment  

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