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Benedetto Radice

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The historian Benedetto Radice

Benedetto Radice was born in Bronte on February 1st  of February 1854.

He made the studies of "humanity grammar and rhetoric" in the Capizzi college and then, at the university of Catania, obtained diploma in "causidico" which was like qualifying for the forensic profession.

But after a short experience as a lawyer, chose  teaching.

Moved to Rome and, subsequently, to Fiesole and to Em­poli, where he taught.

Frequented Ferdinando Martini, Olindo Guerrini and, especially,  Renato Fucini with whom had a long and lasting friendship.

In 1903 he went back to Sicily, to Palermo. Had personal relationships with important Sicilian culture of the early '900 ((Verga, Gentile, Pirandello, Capuana and Giuseppe Lom­bardo Radice with whom had some relationship ties).

Back to Sicily, started to investigate the history of Bronte and the near territory.

He dedicated to Bronte quite a lot of historical essays which, in the field of the native history, constitute a fundamental and absolutely indispensable news base.

Proud of his town of origin, and being a great scholar, got ready, (as he wrote), «with ardor to rummage through old registers and documents, to cover the countryside, search, investigate, question ruins, tombs, coins» for over fifteen years.

The fruit of his tireless work was the  "Memorie storiche di Bronte" (Historical memories of Bronte), whose first volume was published in 1927.

Benedetto Radice brought to light and analyzed the nodal moments of our past, covering all the modern and contemporary history of the country, through serious and careful archive sear­ches. The Radice literary property was given by  him to benefit the local Civic Hospital.

Between  the other very many books written by him, besides the most famous ("Historical memories of Bronte", Bronte, 1827-1928), there are "Nino Bixio in Bronte", "Bronte in the revolution of 1820" (Palermo, 1906) , "The farmhouse and the abbey of holy Maria of Maniace" (Palermo, 1909), "Arcan­gelo Spedalieri  biography" (Palermo, 1914),  "The Aetna: meek eruptions and legends" (Rome, 1925), "Two Sicilian glories-the brothers De Luca" (Bronte, 1926).

Published also a translation of the tales of La Fontaine and studies on "The unity of Italy and the papacy" (Ventimiglia, 1895) and "English in the Italian Risorgimento" (Leghorn, 1901).

He traveled very much.

Died on May 15th, 1931.

Of him  Leonardo Sciascia wrote: "Cultured Man, of severe studies and independent judgment... Bron­te owes him very much. And also the Italian culture, for a more exact vision and judgment of the Risorgimento facts, owes him gratitude. He did not say bad things about Garibaldi, but he did about Nino  Bixio. That is already something".


Benedetto Radice, ”possessed pride not easily subdued; sincerity that unburdened itself with bi­ting sentences; A heart that even getting older continued to burn with youthful enthusiasm; a courage that could look coldly the face of risk. In a season, very mournful for our country town, when the cholera epidemic hit us with destructive violence, emptying entire families, he, against the fearful who were running away from contagion, gave a noble example of abnegation and bro­therly love.

At the head of few generous people, replaced the Mayor and the Aldermen (who had run away to save their skin) organizing assistance and bringing about order and comfort where there was confusion and desertion”. (Luigi Margaglio, Il Ciclope, 19th of March 1947)

Benedetto Radice’s dedication and love towards his fellow men was also significantly ackno­wled­ged by the Ministry of the Interior that granted him a silver medal with a meritorious sanitary diploma.



The integral edition of the Memorie storiche di Bronte We offer it to You in format .

The volume, in Ita­lian, contains the 16 mono­graphs of B. Radice published as articles and put together in two volumes re­specti­vely edited in 1926 and in 1928. 529 pages equipped by numerous photos; 9.158 KB)



Casa di Benedetto Radice

Benedetto Radice was born in this house of the old central part of Bronte.
The building faces the street which takes the name of the writer, the high steps of the San Blandano church and is close to  Annunziata street where another famous house rises, that of the Cimbali brothers

All the works by Benedetto Radice

Il Collegio Capizzi di Bronte (Stabilimento Tipografico Sociale, Bronte 1919)

Chiese, conventi, edifici pubblici di Bronte (Stabilimento Tipografico Sociale, Bronte 1923)

I Fratelli De Luca, (Stabilimento Tipografico Sociale, Bronte 1926)
Memorie storiche di Bronte
, vol. 1° (Stabilimento Tipografico Sociale, Bronte 1928)
Memorie storiche di Bronte, vol. 2° (Stabilimento Tipografico Sociale, Bronte 1936) post.
In memoria dell' ex On .Francesco Cimbali (Stabilimento Tipografico Sociale, Bronte 1930)
In memoria del Cav. Uff. Avv. Placido De Luca
(Stabilimento Tipografico Sociale, Bronte 1926)

Bronte nella rivoluzione del 1820 (Palermo, Tipografia Boccone del Povero, 1906)
Giuseppe Cimbali nella lotta pel diritto (Roma, Tipografia Centenari, 1925)
Favole di La Fontaine, 1° libro (Empoli, Tipografia Traversari, 1892)
Ricordando (Palermo, Cooperativa tipografica siciliana, 1913)
Su due tombe (Catania, Tipografia Bellini,1878)

The integral edition of the
Bronte's Historical Memories
(Memorie storiche di Bronte)
We offer it to You in format
(the volume, in Italian, contains the 16 monographs of B. Radice published as articles and put together in two volumes respectively edited in 1926 and in 1928)
529 pages equipped by numerous photos; 9.158 KB)

Biografia di Arcangelo Spedalieri (Palermo, Officina d'Arti Grafiche A & G. Dolce, 1914)
Bronte ad Enrico Cimbali (Roma, Tipografia Fratelli Pallotta, 1897)
I Caduti di Dogali (Catania, Tipografia Barbagallo, 1887)

Il casale e l'abbazia di S. M. di Maniace (Palermo, Tipografia Boccone del povero, 1909)
L'Etna: eruzioni miti e leggende (Roma, Nuova Antologia, 1925)
L'heritage de Vermutte: nouvelle traduite de… (Lyon, Revue du sud, 1906)
Gli Inglesi nel Risorgimento Italiano (Livorno, Tipografia Raffaello Giusti, 1901)
In morte di Giovannino Prudenzio convittore del Collegio Berardi (Lanciano, Tip. R. Carraba, 1889)

Nino Bixio a Bronte (Catania, Edizione Giannotta, 1910, estratto Archivio Storico Sicilia Orientale, anno VII, fascicolo III)
Nino Bixio a Bronte (a cura di G. Falzone) (Palermo, 1969)
Nino Bixio a Bronte (estratto da “Il Risorgimento in Sicilia", rivista trimestrale di studi storici, anno IV, n. 4)
Nino Bixio a Bronte (introduzione di Leonardo Sciascia) (Caltanissetta-Roma, Edizioni Salvatore Sciascia, 1963) (e ristampa anastatica, Palermo, 1984)

Ricordo funebre di Nunzio Saccullo, farmacista (Adernò, Tipografia Longhitano, 1885)
La Sagra degli Umili Eroi (Bronte, Tipografia Battiato & Moschetto, 1923)
Il sentimento della gloria in Enrico Cimbali (Torino, U.T.E.T., 1925)
L'Unità d'Italia e il Papato (Ventimiglia, Tip. Luigi Billi, 1895)
Memorie Storiche di Bronte
(volume unico) edito dalla Banca Mutua Popolare di Bronte (Adrano, Tipografia Santangelo & Costa, 1984)

Benedetto Radice

Benedetto Radice in a drawing by Mario Schilirò and, below, the cover of the book edit by the ex Banca Mutua Popolare di Bronte that contains nearly all his works.

Translated by Sam Di Bella


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