Here are some interesting things:
Southern Italians were considered “black” in the South and were subjected to the Jim Crow laws of segregation. They weren’t allowed to marry “whites.” It was difficult, damn near impossible.
They were designated as “black” on census forms if they lived in the South and that is because the majority of them were dark-skinned Sicilians.
Mass lynchings happened to them often.
One of the biggest mass lynchings happened to Italians in New Orleans when they thought that a Italian immigrant had killed a “white” police officer.
The very few Northern Italians that immigrated here perpetuated the myth that Southern Italians and Greeks were of a different race than them in order to save their own asses. This wasn’t true, and there are actually dark-skinned Italians all over Italy, not just in the South, as well as light-skinned Italians all over Italy.
The reason I say very few is because over 80% of Italian immigrants were from Southern Italy (Sicily, Abruzzo, Calabria, Campania, Sardinia, Naples, etc.)
It was highly unlikely (damn near impossible) for a Southern Italian to own a slave because they were seen as the same as blacks, and at the time, they were the second (right behind blacks) most discriminated against group.
The mass immigration for Italians didn’t start until 1880 and even then, they were discriminated against. However, this mass immigration leads into Italian-Americans today:
Italian is the fourth largest ethnic group reported among white Americans.
The great majority of Italians are now middle class to upper middle class and wealthy. They also mostly work white collar jobs.
Their intermarriage rate is around 90%. It was at 80% in the 70’s. So most Italian-Americans also have a white parent of some other descent, especially if they were born after 1980. Exactly like my friend who has a Sicilian father (and he is very dark-skinned) and white Southerner for a mother. We spoke to my friend’s Sicilian grandfather, and he said that one of his brothers was dating a white girl from the South back in the day and that her family considered him “black.” They thought that was weird because by that time, they were living in New York.
They are now considered white
I thought it was interesting looking at back then and looking at them now. I knew they weren’t considered white back then, but I had no idea they actually wrote them down as black on census forms. That shocked me, and when I found that my friend’s ancestor was listed as black on that census form, I thought the ancestor was just a biracial who had a Sicilian father, and so did she. We were just as surprised to find that he was just a teenage Sicilian immigrant. My friend has tanned skin, dark hair, blue eyes, and freckles to boot. So you can see both ethnicities in her. My Greek professor is way darker than her, and he also has a white, WASPY mother.
Italians are still discriminated against. I remember hearing a group of white women referring to them as “Ghetto Whites”. Many whites who feel they have a “true bloodline” dont like them. Anglo Saxonism is a bitch. Pretty much anyone not from England, Gemany (not Jews), Netherlands and so on is not “truly white”. From my experience and when I look at history, this is how white supremacists feel. Spaniards are technically considered Euopean/”white”, but many dont accept them as that. Discrimination among the white race is very prevalent.
331 thoughts on “When Italians were “Blacks”: The dark-skinned Sicilians”
Thank you for this article. My paternal grandparents were from Abruzzo, and I know they endured certain forms of discrimination when they moved to upstate New York in the early 1920s. Unfortunately, in a pattern that you may find familiar, my father did not learn from this that it was wrong to discriminate, but instead viewed people of other ethnicities as inferior. He even misinformed me, when i was a child, that we had “superior” Northern Italian roots. He also married a southerner, who is my mother and, ironically, far more open-minded than he ever was. Very nice article.
I am third generation Italian on my Mothers side. I worked grounds work for years so I am dark and pretty much stay dark even in the winter. One women at the Country Club I was employed at, called me mammy. A term meant to degrade or insult a black or brown person. Did I let her diminish me in any way ? By no means. Yes Racism is alive and well but, I have experienced it on both sides of the line. This is tremendously sad for our country. I thought we were all of us human-beings and Americans.
I’m Sicilian as you, but I also consider myself Black. Most of our race are racist against Black People because we don’t wants to recognize ourselves to be Black. But them Whites Italians, and Americans will let us know, we’re not part of them. So, be happy that we’re Black, because Black comes in different shades of beauty.
@ Leila, if you take a look at the geological records of Sicily about 500+ years ago you will find a land mass connecting Sicily to Africa, just some food for thought 😀
Your future genealogists will not thank you I have an ancestor with a North African name from a village on Corsica married to an African American woman and he claims to be a white man from Italy.
My family is from Sicily, the black people associated with my family did not consider us white, they said we are Italian, a breed of our own.
LOVEThis !! So beautiful!!..O’m a Black Sicilian and I’ve had racist things said and done to me! my high school football coach in Miami hit me in my helmet and called me a ginnie and told me to go back to Brooklyn!racism stinks! I Love all people!
Vova Di Italia!
Thank you I have family that are very dark like Cardi b color and they still say there white it’s gets me so mad because they no there color they just don’t like it even tho they should cuz it’s very pretty I’m of olive color and I love it ??
This breaks my heart to read many of these comments . I am Italian on both parents side and mixed w Irish in my moms side and mixed w Irish/ Russian on my dads . My Irish maternal grandma I was told didn’t like my father’s looks and meanly called him a “ frizzy haired Jew “ I proudly honor all of my ancestry and feel sorry for my now deceased snobby white Irish grandmothers attitude . Oh well . It saddens me Italians were mistreated as well as Jews Spaniards Africans etc . My dream is kindness for all ?
There are also African roots in UK and Ireland. I am Italian and Irish, too. My Irish Great Grandmother came from Scotland, but was also a Spanish Moor. Note the red and green in both Irish and Italian flags. It’s sad how misinformed Americans are.
I has a neighbor back in North Philadelphia during the 50’s up.
Every time I saw him he would greet me with “Ey” “Siciliano Africano”
When I answer him with ” Perche dice quello?” e.g. Why do you say that?
He said ” Siciliani likeh dee N—er” dey steeleh deh Calabresi wife”.
The green in the Irish flag has to do with religion.
Green stands for the catholic Irish and gold for the Protestant Irish….
I don’t feel as bad after reading all this comments. I’m mexican-italian on my mother’s side, growing in Mexico was much easier for me than for mixed italian-americans in the US. Nevertheless, I remember being picked on school by other Mexican children because they considered me being too light skinned for a mexican boy. Now I’m a US citizen and people will consider me Mexican because of the lenguage, but if I say that I’m also Italian they won’t believe me, even though my looks are more Mediterranean. Proud of my two nationalities though.
my Mother’s Mom is from there, Abruzzo, n my Daddy’s Mom is from Sicily,myG Daddy’s on both sides, my Fraternal G Daddy Puerto Rican n naples,n Arabian,n my maternal G Daddy Spanish,so I m proud of my cultures n I m certain there is Black blood in me to
There’s a thing I question, where most races stayed to their nation of origin except for trade. Otherwords, everyone got along, in business, but the races were kept pure. I heard the japanes being called racists because they kept a pure bloodline. But nature is that way. Muscovy ducks flock with muscovy ducks, pintails with pintails, mallards with mallards. It holds true for squirrel, rabbit, deer, turtles, fish etc. Which in Revelations, it talks about a nation full of adulteries. Seriously, I question this Very much as in o.t. references, one wasn’t to Wear wool and linen but one or the other. Not to plow with an ox and an ass but one or the other. Then not to plant a field with mingled seeds. Adultery means to remove somethings purity. It can even be sexual as commonly thought.
But in nature many things exists in harmony. Ducks, squirrels, geese all get along.
Here again, many ministries wouldn’t accept the responsibility of staying such a view for fear of repercussions.
Yet, Northern Africa I’ve always heard was white. Europe, it’s white. Just as South Africa is black with different nationalities and so with the Asians and about anyone else.
Now people, given materialism and such and so many placing value in a person for such is warped. Material goods don’t make a person more honorable, truthful, ethical, moral or otherwise. So a different class or caste system is and had been created based on such. Which as people, we are social creatures needing social interaction, acceptance, approval, leisure and recreation, where when ones’ own race steps out of league to create another caste system, people join together based on other things like interests, emotional states, etc. Which it might show some are more attuned to being merciful to another because of familiarity rather than difference as race. Which might be good, might be bad. I haven’t been able to figure it out yet. Again, few care what centuries of history has taught. But even biblically there’s statements regarding racial purity as well as otherwise.
Somehow, the civilized Indian nations seemed to have it together. I don’t know about justice, but plenty of natural food available.
Just think, if all highways has fruit trees and comes on the sides as well as right of ways for powerlines and pipelines, then other edible food native to an area down of heirloom seeds, many would still use the grocery store given their nature for convenience. But just think, many would never starve. Yet, there’s businesses and government as well as groups that wouldn’t tolerate that as they’d fear erosion of their control.
Look at Christ just walking along to pick figs. The Great Depression wouldn’t have been so devastating if such existed.
Wwwhhhat ? Pure races ??? Don’t you know anything about the origin of Homo sapiens?
There is only one Human Race Alive today – we killed or interbred with the others. Plus – we all began black. White skin was a mutation.
Not really, we all began with an orange tint, like the Kalahari bushmen who are genetically the “oldest” humans.
listen to Gem!
human DNA is identical. Dna does not vary according to ethnicity. You will find more variation in DNA among the people living in one small town than if you compare DNA from people across the world. Race is a human construct, it’s not based on sound science.
Omg please someone delete this eugenics nightmare post!!
What a jackass.
SPECIES and RACES are NOT the same freaking things.
And close enough different animal species WILL reproduce actually. It’s HOW we ended-up with domesticated animals and how different species evolved.
Just FYI, the Bible is a religious text full of parables/myths.
NOT a science tome.
A folklore/mythology/spiritual expression & guidance collection of verses. Like a poetry book.
People like you are a serious threat to humanity and peace. I’m so over this ignorance and psychobabble.
Homo Sapiens are ONE species, together.
Just like domestic dogs or cars are.
They come in allll kinds of fur, eye, skin, and nail colors.
Dogs happily mate with and form packs (which are all made-up of offspring of an alpha pair), with one another. Even with wolves, wild dogs, and foxes. (Who are what many of today’s domestic breeds descended from. Yes, foxes.)
We would have to mate and have offspring with OTHER species like dogs or bonobo monkeys, to even be in violation of your biblical edict examples.
Your exact lunatic thinking is literally HOW racism and supremacy concepts- all riddled with error, based on NOTHING but mythology and fear, hatred and insecurity- came to exist.
” Yet, Northern Africa I’ve always heard was white”. Whoever told you this, misinformed you. Africa as a who was always black. Whiteness came as a result of interracial marriage, resulting in Beber tribes. But Mostly, whiteness came as a result of Arab invaders, who conquered Carthage, Cyrinia and Egypt and as a result of wars, killed Africans. Those who escaped Arabisation went into sub Sahara.
Interestingly, the names Egypt/Mitzrajim/ Africa are the names of an ancestor of Africans
Fact is only around 2% of Italians have African DNA…Trust me..Northern Italians, going back 100 plus years, didnt look any “lighter” in skin color……My grandfather passed away in 1984..He was 92..Came to Ellis Island…His mother, 100% Italian, had red hair, freckles, but was fairly tan…Its just time in the sun..Thats all
there is a lot of tension between the north and south in Italy and abroad. To say that Northern Italians perpetuated that myth is only adding more tension and more conflict to the fire. It would be more accurate to say that policies which gave preference to Northern Italians over Southern Italians and other discriminatory practices rooted in colonialism and imperialism are largely responsible for that propaganda. I have one parent from the south and one parent from the north and I can tell you in all honesty there is a lot of good and bad on both sides. When my dad worked in Germany during the 1960s he could not go into certain bars, cafes and restaurants which banned Italians (including those from the north). Both sides face discrimination, yet ironically the north and south discriminate against each other which only makes the situation more messed up
Italians and Greeks have Black ancestry, nonetheless they are White and practice racism against Blacks.
There are people who come to the US from all over the world, plenty of them suffer discrimination where they come from, but once they are in the US, they desire to practice discrimination, in the form of racism, against someone else. Now they can feel like they are somebody at another person’s expense. It’s animal instinct.
My grandfather was a dark skinned Sicilian Italian living in Buffalo NY had to work with the “Nigger” crew(blacks, italians and hispanics) when he worked in the brick yard in his late teens early 20’s.
The reasons Sicilians are racisit againts blacks because of the Moor invasion and ~100 year occupation of Sicily. During this time Africans raped and enslaved the people of Sicily. Thats where the dark skinned Italian comes from. While I can’t excuse racism against anyone, I can understand why Sicilians are racist againsts people of African decent.
that is not accurate in fat it is down right slander …do proper research and you will learn that the moors crossed over and merged cultures and what happens when you cultures assimilate ,change s in religion, changes in values and ultimately changes in race. The templars saw it as a chess move over the entire region and in a nutshell forced them out even though they civilized the region (with baths oils clothing science and even built one or the worlds greatest libraries) and destroyed every trace of moor influence. In their wake leaving behind broken mixed race families hence forth your dark skinned italians…. please stop making stupid news famous…
Amazing that you do know what you are talking about lol
And my family is Italian and I’m well…
Versed in many diverse religions 🙂
You are wrong. It wasn’t Kumbaya. Read about the Barbary Slave Trade. Slavery existed all over the world and resulted in mixed races.
My mother was from Sicily idiot yes they did rape a s enslave tbe sicilians you jackass I’m Sicilian with the last name Moore
Sicanians, Bizantines, Elymians, Arabs,
Sicels, Norman, Phoenicians, Swabians,
Greeks, Angevins, Carthgians, Arogonese,
Romans, Albanians, Vandals & Goths, Spanish
These are all Sicilian
I don’t think so
you need to do some research on history
Moorish influence has never been erased from Sicilian culture, it’s proudly incorporated into every day lives. Most of our towns have an Arab name, the Sicilian language is loaded with Arabic words..to name a few of the influences that remain to this day.
Bs I’m Sicilian and they conquered Sicily and raped enslaved the ppl then it was conqured by the Vikings, Roman’s etc etc you dont know shit .I call troll bro on this one probably a mooley .just like white ppl coming on here and trying to cover up their ancestors evil doings. Mooleys and whites are just a like.
What is a “mooley”?
Totally inaccurate on many levels.
Racial discrimination in all southern Italy is not as common as in the rest of Italy and Europe.
Look here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fire_at_Sea
The Moorish domination in Sicily was actually a golden age for that area. No sicilian with or without education consider the invasion by the Moors a “bad thing”.
Have a look: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emirate_of_Sicily
Not really true. When the Normans came, they were welcomed not as conquerors, but as liberators. If some Sicilians converted to Islam for political and economic advantage, they quickly returned to the Catholic faith when the Normans came. Most just paid the tribute tax. And this notion that the Saracens drastically change the DNA of Sicily, not true. A recent article https://www.nature.com/articles/ejhg2008120 indicates that the Saracen (Turnisan) and North African DNA, Haplogroup E1b1 with a subclade that clusters in Tunisia and Lebanon, as well, is estimated at 6%. Greek DNA is 37%. Furthermore, if you look at the Haplogroups in Sicily, they are the same ones everywhere else. In fact, Rome (Latium) and Sicily don’t look different at all. Even Liguria (Genoa) is similar.
Otzi the Iceman, if you look up articles on his DNA was neolithic Haplogroup G, and he clusters with Southern Europeans, Southern Italians more so, and Sardinians the most. What did his DNA tell us, he looked like a Mediterranean-European , which means Cranial features (skull, nose,etc) like all other Europeans, hair texture, like other Europeans, but eye and hair color, brown-brunette-dark color hair.
The invasion of the Saracens was not a good thing. Typical PC left-wing crap.
U sound bitter.
You are an absolute IDIOT. Stop telling lies about Sicily. Sicilians were not raped! They formed relationships with Africans. My father is Sicilian! How dare you!! We accept our African history in my family. We know we have Moor blood and are not ashamed. You are a disgusting pig.
It’s sad that you are stuck in history and you need to further educate yourself. Your “understanding” of why a group of people are STILL RACIST is as ignorant as if I said, ” I’m African American and because of this country’s history of slavery, I hate white people.” That’s small minded thinking and people such as yourself is why racism is as alive and well. Racism is. Ugly and you should be disgusted with yourself.
Davy I have been reading all of these comments and ur the only one that got it right. This is why African Americans and Italians are so much alike and the reason why italians don’t like African Americans?
I fully believe you! Yes it is still very sad there is always going to be some kind of dislike or hate. But what people forget or they purposely do not agree is that every single one of us all bleed the same!
Actually, there are A LOT of us italians for BLM. So shut the hell up.
How do you quantify ” a lot” ?
So would that make an albino African white as well. Seeing as you can only see skin color
Italians from sicily were invaded by arabs for too hundred years. The rest of italy was invaded only by europeans . So yeah i agree italians are deff white , and so are spanish ppl , spain has a similar haplogroup to the british isles.
Lacat with all due respect that is not true . Hate and racism is not exclusive to one race religion or creed. It is something that plagues all races, religions and creeds. It is up to us to see through the hate.
An elderly Italian woman I know was trying to make me feel bad about myself, while I had come into her office to renew an insurance policy. This woman is a very elderly alcoholic. I didn’t let her succeed with her attempt. Afterwards, she looked downhearted and she explained how poorly Italians and the Irish had been treated in the past. I never said or did anything to suggest that I didn’t like either group, so she was being unfair. Anyhow, I wish her luck if she is still alive. It goes to show that the pain from racism can last a life time.
Well let’s be honest… Pound for pound, Africa had a cakewalk compared to the bitter and brutal history of Europe. You sounded very condescending to her, and she knew it. From wars to plagues, violent subjugation and slavery that made the slave living conditions in much of the south look like a downright opportunity for Euro’s! Sicilians came over in waves to fill in on the cotton fields where subsaharan black African slaves had been before emancipation ….their accommodations were NO better, and they had to pay for it. All while living in an area where most of the Sicilians were victimized by the SAME Jim Crow laws that blacks were under…. Not to mention: the record for most ppl lynched at one time? Sicilian as well… Not all whites had privlege- period point blank. KKK didn’t roll out red carpet for Italians for a while lol
But I still don’t think those conditions are worse than what many faced in the ghettos of the north. AND the Italians had it in all sides in the ghettos. But that’s why they imported Costa nostra. They didn’t beg for justice, they made it with bones.
Even still, none of this compares to what went down in Europe. It was a cold vicious hell unless you were of some type nobility. It’s like insinuating that ppl in the poorest, dankest projects of South Bronx in 90s were somehow well to do or privileged JUST because they lived in a country so rich as Bill Gates lived in…. It’s silly. An outdated silly world view. Not everyone was a rich Englishman lmao… You should educate yourself on European history…. Trust…. We don’t get enough of it in school anymore. We’re busy studying places that had relatively little to do with this western civilization that YOU call home now.
In the end, I think subsaharan blacks got a good deal in American: 400 years of bitter hard persecution for the same price of 1st world living that Euros had to endure a cpl thousand WAY MORE brutish years of history in order to develop/make/give to non-Euro’s.
Not even fair actually. If ya think of it.
Thank you also for this valid information <33
totally distorted BS. The life expectancy of a slave was 7 years.
Not true. The life expectancy of an indentured servant was seven years after the contract began, often a seven year contract. Some of these people were stolen off the streets and falsely charged with crimes in Europe, then given the “option” to sign the contract to become indentured or else whatever. Then they were shipped away from everything they knew and used up in the new world. Actually, many died within the first four years. There were some cases which were better than others.
Life expectancy of owned slaves in the new world was much higher because these were considered possessions. These slaves were left to people in wills. The idea was not to use them up, but to use them as much as possible without using them up. There were some cases which were worse than others.
You let out the 300 years of North African raids on Europe when circa 1 Million European women were taken as Sex Slaves.
Ok Hitler. Move on now with your white northern euro apologist shit. Jeezus, these people.
No one HAD to come to America by whips and chains of European decent & HAD to change their name from Kunte-Kente to Toby. The Europeans have & had choices. Keep an open mind. If I uproot & move to a country any country. Thank God in this day & age I have a choice to return to my native country if I choose to do so. & keep my name.
The rise of the police state has made racism much more deadly. Now privileged white men can get any minority they want arrested and the cops will believe them.
As a female minority that is so true. However, thank God for video. What a man Sowith, so shall he reap. America is in bad shape.
I study a lot of ethnography and international culture and found these same things to be true you mention in your article. Moreover, my mother’s family is Sicilian and I have two relatives who, just this past year, were telling me they were called ‘black’ in Massachusetts after immigrating. One was beaten with a broom for wanting to marry a ‘white’ girl.
I had a DNA test done a few years ago revealing my mother’s heritage is almost 1/3rd Morrocan (Arab and Berber) as well as Spanish, Greek, Native Sicilian (Siculi) and her blood has traveled from India, through the Horn of Africa and the Middle East before ending up in Sicily. (We share DNA with 48% of the people in Ethiopia/Horn of Africa region). My mother and her sister look unlike most traditional Italians.
On the U.S. census, once a group became ‘white’ and could then benefit from white privilege, they ran with it. Sometime before the 50s, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and even North African people became ‘white’ on the census which is very strange to me. White on paper is one thing, but how you’re treated by society based on the way you look or your culture, is quite another. I find ‘white’ to not just be a physical coloring but also a perspective on life. Some people of color live in a white-perspective world (their point of view or opinions) although they’re physicality denies them those societal benefits.
Your phrase “white on paper” can be expressed as WOP. After much thought, I feel that this is actually how WOP was derived, rather than from “without papers” or “work on passage.”
“White on Paper” carries the true insult. The other derivations are meaningless. Do you have an historical references to shed light on this? It sounds very much like a southern voter registration strategy to offset black registration
I am of Sicilian descent. The terms ‘wop’ and ‘dago’ were actually derogatory terms first applied to Spaniards. The term ‘wop’ is derived from ‘quapo’ which means ‘handsome’ in Spanish. It was a snide jeer because it was felt that Spanish men and also southern Italian men were to preoccupied with their appearance. While WOP could be the acronym for ‘with out papers’ at the time it was originally being applied to Spanish and southern Italian immigrants almost all of them had papers because the only way to get to America was on an ocean going ship and they were required to register their passengers at the port of call like Ellis Island. The term “dago’ is derived from the first name ‘Diego’ which was again a snide jeer implying that all Spanish and southern Italian men looked a like. I hope this clears up some of the questions of etymology of these terms.
As a further comment I was curious about genetic ancestry and had my DNA tested. My mother was northern European but my father 100% Sicilian for many generations. I discovered that I am admixture of Geman and Irish from my mother and Greek, Italian, Iberian (Spanish), Middle Eastern, and North African from my father. Studying Sicilian history all of these civilizations conquered Sicily at one time or another.
Thanks for this information. My husband is 1/8 Italian, and I had never heard these terms before until I had been around a part Italian. I wondered where in the world they came from & what they stood for.
I think it would be nice to have an Italian husband. Or Siciliano or Jewish or African or Spanard. I don’t discriminate. Let’s see what God brings me.
Wow I never knew that!! Now I know where the term dago comes from!! I was called a little dago growing up by my neighbors! I always wanted to know why they called me that? I knew it was ignorant but I was a child and didn’t understand why they called me THAT! But I’m proud of my heritage so screw them!
I’ve never heard of WOP being ‘white on paper’. That is a term I use to describe it; meaning, the U.S. census may list a group of people as ‘white’ officially but their experiences in reality are quite different. (i.e.: the Italian scientist taken off a plane recently and questioned for doing math).
WOP as a derogatory term for Southern Italians comes from the Italian word ‘guappo’, which means ‘thug’, so there’s that. Southern Italians are also called ‘Dago’ which comes from ‘Diego’ for being dark, swarthy, and mysterious. There’s also ‘guinea’ which comes from the fact that Sicilians are dark and the English, having traveled to Sicily from Guinea West Africa, thought the Sicilians were as dark as the ‘Guineas of Africa’. Simply calling someone ‘black’ or ‘dark’ was and still in used as an insult. These groups that became ‘white’ should have reached back to grab the hands of groups that didn’t get that meal ticket, but sadly, many moved on into the white group and grabbed tightly to that privilege.
”We share DNA with 48% of the people in Ethiopia/Horn of Africa region”
Are you kidding or what ? Where did you test if I may ask ..? Sounds like a shitty company based on these absurd results..
It’s not absurd the DNA test is actuate do your research many Italians contain DNA from the Horn of Africa. Scientists confirm the prescence of African DNA , but now they want to flip and say Horn of Africans are white … Lol Italy/Greece was a colony of Egypt
Nope, it’s actually the exact opposite Mark.
Egypt was a colony of both the Greeks/Hellenes and Romans at different points in history. Neither were ever colonies of Egypt.
You believe every word hook line and sinker no don’t that the EDOMITE/CANAANITE jew scientists tell you now don’t you good little goy.
My mother is from Sicily trapani to be exact and I’ve recently done dna with 23 and me …I was 1.% guinean and like 4% North African 40% Italian from Sicily 2% Greek and 2% Spanish the only spots that showed level of certainty was 40% sicilian the rest of them said not detected but gave a percentage and I have brown olive skin and very curly hair with blue eyes
I was born and raised in Sicily. People came from Africa and formed relationships whether it was with or without their consent, with Sicilians. That’s why their ancestry can be found passing through the Horn of Africa…pick up a book.
Do you have any book titles to recommend about Sicily’s relations with Africa? I’m actually interested in knowing more about the relationship between Ethiopia and Sicily way before the colonialism and all that. Any book titles in Italian and English would be nice. Considering Sicily isn’t that far from Tunisia or Libya it wouldn’t be surprising that the Moors or Berbers left some of their DNA behind when their rule of Sicily ended. 🙂 Its no secret that the Moors did the same in Spain.
Italians and Greeks were seen as non white in Australia too; for that reason they did not let them immigrate until 1962.
I live in Australia (I bet you do not).
There were Italians in Australia in the 1800s, check your facts. Many Italians and Greeks migrated to Australia in the 1920s, and even before. Also, after World War 2, many many Greeks and Italians went to live in Australia.
In addition, the White Australia Policy was applied up until 1966. You can read about it here, so that you can become well-informed.
Everyone of Sicilian descent will have fairly different results on their DNA test as there was so much mixture in the region.
I saw ‘we’ meaning my particular family DNA. So, why would the company be ‘shitty’ and the results ‘absurd’ from an actual DNA test?
The tests (this one from DNAtribes.com) use allele markers from your ethnic ancestry going back hundreds of years and matching you among world populations.
My Roots are from Naples on my Father’s side and Sicily on my Mother’s. All of Southern Italy was known as Magna Grecia before the Roman Empire was dominant. Naples was called Neopolis and there are Greek ruins all over the South. My Mother’s maiden name is Mandracchia which is an Italicized version of Mandrakia, a Greek name for people of Mandraki, a port city on Rhodes and my Father’s name is Colucci which is a diminutive form of Nicholas or Nikolas, also a Greek name. Who knows how long those names were passed down from Greek ancestors living for generations in Italy? The truth is nobody knows. The facts are, every human on earth today can be traced genetically to an African woman 60,000 years ago and an African man 20,000 years ago. Our DNA is 99.9 percent identical and all human life originated in Africa. Anything other than Black features such as lighter skin, straighter hair, thinner eyes, etc. are mutations from evolution due to migration, weather and geographic conditions. Bottom line, there is no PURE RACE other than Central African peoples and we ALL share the same DNA.
How do you know what race the geneticist is after all?
Sicily is after all Right off the African coast. If you’re Sicilian get DNA tested, you’re in for a big surprise. The Moors were all over that area for a long time !
Tell it brother.!
Very nice comment – right on point. We ALL come from AFRICA is the most accurate statement scientifically as of this moment! I am white from the caucausus mountains, Republic of Georgia, but I have known this fact for years, and have always said there are many many more things in common we all have than most of us choose to believe. It is time to live in peace together and find what we have in common, not what makes us different! That time is NOW!
Yes, yes, tell it!! Best comment I’ve read so far!
I agree . Dosent make sense. Being the fact that siciliians were never even invaded by them eithet.
I love your thoughtful additions to this already wonderful article. I am an American living in Milan, and my boyfriend is Sicilian. I just said we should get his genetics tested as I am not very curious to what it might reveal. I should do the same.
I am 100% Sicilian and both my parents were born in Sicily and immigrated in the 1920s. I speak Italian. I have blond hair and blue eyes. Both my grandmothers were blue or hazel eyed as was one of my grandfathers. I wish I knew what DNA test you too because my Ancestry.com test had no such fine delineation. I’m 82 % Italian/ Greek according to them. Southern Italians while as a whole are on the darker side of the European skin color spectrum yet many like me are much fairer than the average German. On Lufstanza when I fly most all the flight attendants first address me in German. Point is you can’t make gross generalizations like this unless backed up by facts. It’s a historic fact that Italians were prejudiced against in the early part of the century but saying that Italians and Greeks have black blood or that all southern Italians are dark skinned is just an uneducated pejorative.
Melanin is a good trait!! Melanin from the RICHEST continent on earth ?.
My mother is from Sicily and my Nonna and one of my Aunts were very fair skinned, red hair and blue eyes…. My mom would get so upset at people who would stop me and tell me how italian I looked because I was dark. Sicily is like a little USA…..
Don’t be deceived. If you look at a MAP of the tiny piece of ocean that separates Italy/Sicily/Spain/Africa….. what di you think??? humans mated with one another for thousands of years, then there was constant invasions and such. No one is pure in those areas at all. The only folks that are still pretty pure are in Africa in areas where they did not migrate very much at all. All of us of European descent are a mix-mash
of human DNA. Most of us have Neandertal DNA or Denisovan(early Humans.
It doesn’t take a lot of working out. The reason why the majority of Portuguese, Italians, Greeks are dark is because they are from the Mediterranean where they have hot summers and mild damp winters compared to northern europe. True countries like Greece and Italy were invaded by darker peoples like Turks, Libyans etc which also conyributed to their darkness. Not sub saharan africa. Though a small percentage of Portugal may have some sub saharan or at least some Moroccan blood.
Will, DNA varies in every single person. I know an Italian woman that did a DNA test. The results of non-White DNA was 10% Arab and 10% Sub-Saharan. Southern Europeans dark features come from their African & Middle Eastern ancestors. End of.
Really tho? A SMALL percentage of Portugal may have SOME black blood. Your racism is showing. F-Off.
Well, other than the close location of Sicily to Africa and the occupation of the Moors for several generations and the trade routes and all it stands to reason that the occupants would have darker skin. Normans, who are fair skinned Germanic people invaded Sicily and occupied and intermarried for quite some time. In which case there would be fairer folks living there as well.
There is a common misconception that Italians, notably Sicilians have a high frequency of Black blood due to the Moorish occupation of Sicily. However, an even greater misconception is that the Moors were “Black”, when they were actually mostly Caucasian Berbers. Whatever few Blacks the Moors may have used as slaves or cannon fodder as they did in their Iberian campaign would have not had much of an impact on the genetics of Sicilians, because the Moors themselves did not leave much of a genetic impact. Furthermore, the genetic impact would have not been from rape or large harems of Sicilian women, but from Moorish women and children left behind and Christianized after the expulsion of Moors from Sicily.
Another common myth is that Italians have black blood in them from Hannibal and his men. Unfortunately for Afrocentrics, Hannibal and his men were not Black but Semitic Phoenicians. One simply has to do a search for a coin with Hannibal’s portrait or his bust on it from the time that he lived to see that he was not Black, but Caucasian. To see what a Phoenician probably looked like, one can simply take a look at the inhabitants of the island of Malta, who are descendents from the Phoenicians and speak a Phoenician language.
As for the reason why some Italians may be “darker” than other Europeans, it is not certain, but there are various theories. Unfortunately for Afrocentricists, it has nothing to with Sub-Saharan Africans.
Epidemiologists determined in the 1970’s that Italians were 99.92% pure. Even the Sicilians that have been accused of being less than Caucasian had less that .02% Arabic and negroid blood in them?
Yes, we know the white man always comes out on top and the black man is always a slave despite history and DNA saying otherwise. No one trusts you albinos anymore. Not since you made Tut look transgendered. You’d all believe Tut to be an androgynous 45 year old drag queen than the brown skin boy that he was.
Are you familiar with the term bred out. This is precisely what occurs to any smaller Ethnic group that amalgamates with another larger Ethnic group. In addition the Berbers were of Black skin as was Hannibal and most people of that region. A little research will go a long way. This is another futile attempt to dismiss and deny the presence of African civilization. There existed an African presence across Europe 50,000 years, and possibly more before Caucasians were there. The sub-Saharan Africans migrated across the straits of Gibraltar into Europe and the Americas (being very experience seafarers and boat builders) long before so-called white Europeans. http://realhistoryww.com/world_history/ancient/Misc/True_Negros/The_True_Negro_2a.htm
So you’re saying all people were black before some changed through adaptation to the environment. But adaptation takes thousands of years, the Berbers who invaded Spain and Italy are for the most part no different to today’s Berbers who are and look Caucasian. The reason southern Italians, Spanish, Lebanese, Greeks, Morrocans, etc can be mistaken for each other is the same as a German, Englishman, Dutchman, etc can be mistaken for each other. Although invading people can add some DNA into a community, it is in fact very monute and not so recognizable, the major contributor to people’s physical appearance is the climate and environment. Europe is a massive land mass and varies greatly in climate between north and south and so do the people. Just cause somebody lives within boundaries somebody started to call Europe and defined these boundaries, does not mean they will all look the same.
Italians are Semetics from the son of Isaac who is called Esau. Esau was the twin brother of Jacab (Israel). The Ten Lost tribe of Israel are found today in Afghanistan, Pakistan and surrounding countries. Their appearences varies with colors on their hair, eyes and skin. Many of them look White but are not so. Ive studied and found that Italians and Israelites both have various colors of appearences and also their physical features are identical and concluded that they are from Isaac’s twin sons.
Your assertions that the Italians were mixed with the dark race is illogical. A whole nation or even half of it, is impossible to be mixed with other race, when a nation is already numerous . The only explanation is that Italians share Ancestry with Israelites and Arabs. Not by mixture!
The jews are EDOMITES! Not the Italians STUNOON!
Impossible??…. Check out the Moors, “The Black Kings of Europe. the Moors were all over even into Ireland, Scotland,
check out the Black Kings of Scotland. Don’t deceive yourself.
Esau ‘s race are the Russian people!
We are dark because we have African DNA, its is obvious by are hair coloring and complexion.
…Go and read something about population genetics for a change
Genetics prove the prove the presence of African DNA it peaks at 40% in some regions of Italy . Do your research
The people of Southern Italy, Sardinia, and Sicily became part of Italy in the 1860s. Prior to that, yes, there were so many groups passing through, trading (major trade route), being enslaved, and conquering. The people of Sicily, for example, are very mixed from Europe, The Mediterranean, Africa, and the Middle East (especially the Phoenicians as you said as well). My particular DNA shows 1/3rd Moroccan ancestry both Arab and Berber on my mother’s side as well as Horn of Africa and lots of Spanish.
The tricky terms to use are Caucasian and Race. Caucasians are actually Central Asians from the Caucuses (Armenians, some Georgians, Azerbaijanis, Norther Iranians, etc.) From what I’ve read, a German scientist decided to call the blond, blue-eyed Georgians, ‘the most beautiful people on Earth’, and named them the Caucasians. (Excuse me while I try to muster a face of surprise). Then another German scientist used that term to mean all Europeans and eventually ‘whites’. It was all racist B.S. basically. ‘Race’ was created to divide and conquer. (Not all Africans are black, not all Europeans are white). It’s a complicated history and has made beautiful people. 🙂
All our ancestry is something great to be proud of. I enjoy these discussions but once in a while they get to be about discussing ‘who’s in the white is right club’, not that I’m accusing you of that, but it’s just a natural way to go.
Exactly!! Finally, the voice of reason. You are totally correct. All you folks get over your white supremacy. You really only see pure DNA from some parts of Africa where people have lived in the same region for many millennia with little exposure or mixing with other races. My daughter has a friend from Nigeria, he excitedly got his DNA tested, he was so excited to find out the story.. He was disappointed to find out that he was 100 percent subsaharan African?Igbo. He said…”How Boring”
All the early major Berber tribes including the Masmuda, Sanhaja, Ketama Zenata and Nafusa are described as dark reddish brown like the “Indi’ or as “blacks” or Ethiopians in early documents. The notion of the early Berbers as being “whites” or Caucasoid is a new and racist one related to the concept of the African “Hamite”. Certainly the original Berber-speakers were never referred to as anything but “black” or something near it until the 12th century and were otherwise considered the color of Abyssinians and other so called “Indi”.
Even the Kabyles a notoriously fair-skinned “Berber” people of North Africa are up until the 19th century described as “brown” “apart from a few clans…….http://www.africaresource.com/rasta/sesostris-the-great-the-egyptian-hercules/the-appearance-of-the-original-berbers-according-to-european-perceptions-by-dana-marniche/
What is black blood? I’m in the medical field blood is red, even in the mosquito that bit me.
What a bunch of horseshit. Science has come quite a ways since the 1970s. Get over your racist fear and panic that you may not be Ivory Snow.
Southern Italians and Sicilians are not the same ethic group as Italians to the north.
They’re only even Italian by takeover.