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Michael San Filippo

Buon Onomastico a Me!

By September 29, 2009

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As if one birthday celebration a year wasn't enough, Italians traditionally celebrate twice! No, Italy hasn't perfected human cloning yet. Instead, everyone marks not only their birthdate but their name day (or onomastico, in Italian). September 29 is the feast day of Saint Michael—so buon onomastico a me!


September 30, 2009 at 7:41 pm
(1) Claudia says:

I would like to know my own onomastico . How did you find out yours?

September 30, 2009 at 10:38 pm
(2) About.com Guide to Italian Language says:

I’ve known my feast day since a young age. But if you want to find out the name day for Claudia, see the Guide to Italian Baby Names. Claudia’s onomastico is March 20 (see Italian Baby Names: Claudia).

October 4, 2009 at 10:02 pm
(3) About.com Guide to Italian Language says:

It seems as if celebrating one’s onomastico can get you arrested!

Camorra: Festeggia Onomastico, Arrestato Boss Ricercato
(AGI) – Napoli, 4 ott. – Francesco Gallo, 52 anni, capo del clan Gallo-Cavalieri che a Torre Annunziata e’ in guerra con la famiglia Gionta per il controllo del traffico e dello spaccio di droga, e’ stato arrestato nella sua abitazione in via Cavour mentre si accingeva a festeggiare il suo onomastico con la famiglia.

October 7, 2009 at 10:32 am
(4) minimino says:

The celebration of name days has opened a “generation gap.” Older women [it has become more a "woman's thing" than a man's], particularly devout ones, celebrate it. The younger generation [at least they don't in Central and Northern Italy] doesn’t [contemporaneous with the steep drop-off of religious observance by many Italians, but of the young in particular].

The Vatican has also been moving Saints around [in order to accomodate the unbelievably high number of Saints John Paul II proclaimed?]. One example is the Archangel Gabriel: that name day used to be celebrated in March; now it’s in September. Go figure!

October 7, 2009 at 11:28 am
(5) Greg says:

So, Claudia, the short answer is: get a church calendar, or a book of the saints, and look up your name. Here is what I found for you from Catholic.org:

Claudia was the mother of Linus, who became the second Pope. Tradition has her the daughter of British King Caractacus, who was sent to Rome with his family in chains when he was defeated by Aulus Plautius. Released by Emperor Claudius, one of his daughters took the name Claudia, remained in Rome, was baptized, and is the Claudia mentioned in St. Paul’s second letter to Timothy. Another tradition has her the daughter of Cogidubnus, a British ally of Claudius, who took the Emperor’s name. Martial mentions a British lady, Claudia Rufina, and says she was married to his friend Aulus Pudens, a Roman senator. Another tradition has this senator the Pudens also mentioned in St. Paul’s second letter to Timothy. Her feast day is August 7.

October 7, 2009 at 5:38 pm
(6) Shannon Stone says:

Is there only an Onomastico for names in Italian names? Is there on for Shannon?(I know…..I’m Irish)

October 7, 2009 at 10:29 pm
(7) Michael C. says:

Buon Onomastico (in ritardo) a noi due, oh mio vecchio amico!!!

Michael C. (da Middlebury)

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