Pouring Jewish Water into Fascist Wine


The aim of this book is to offer the reader a critical edition of the petitions in their original Italian language that (Catholic) Jews residing in Italy submitted to the Fascist General Administration for Demography and Race (Demorazza) in order either to be “discriminated,” i.e., not subjected to various provisions of Mussolini’s racial laws of 1938, or “Aryanized,” i.e., be considered not of “the Jewish race,” as defined by the convoluted and inconsistent Fascist anti-Semitic legislation. Anyone born of parents who both were of “the Jewish race,” even though professing a religion other than Judaism, was deemed to be Jewish. Consequently, the racial laws affected not only those Italians who considered themselves Jewish, whether secular or religious, but also a significant number of Catholics whose ancestors had been Jewish, as the majority of the cases contained in this volume show.
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Biographical Note

Robert A. Maryks, Ph.D. (2006) in History, Fordham University, is Associate Professor of History at Bronx CC of the City University of New York. He has published extensvily on the history of Jesuits, inlcuding Saint Cicero and the Jesuits: The Influence of the Liberal Arts on the Adoption of Moral Probabilism (Ashgate, 2008) and The Jesuit Order as a Synagogue of Jews: Jesuits of Jewish Ancestry and Purity-of-Blood Laws in the Early Society of Jesus (Brill, 2009).

Review Quote

“Through unpublished documents Maryks allows us to see, from a different point of view, the events relating to the fate of the Jews during World War II. In particular, by focusing on the key figure of Tacchi Venturi we now have a new perspective on things. Of course there is still much work to be done but the book is a good starting point to better understand the background to the attitude of the Church of Rome in the terrible years of war. It is through documents of this kind that we should consider the events of World War II and other subsequent events related to the issues of racism and antisemitism and treat the topic from a new standpoint”. Alessandro Visani, Sapienza University of Rome. In: The Journal of Ecclesiastical History, Vol. 65, No. 1 (January 2014), pp. 228-229.

Table of contents

Acknowledgments List of Abbreviations List of Illustrations Introduction 1. Allatini Giulia 2. Berger Eugenio 3. Campagnano Angelo 4. Cava Umberto 5. Cavalieri Ferdinando 6. Della Rocca Mario 7. Donati Antigono 8. Fanno Marco 9. Finzi Giulio 10. Foa Raimondo 11. Forti Alberto 12. Forti(s) Gino 13. Gallico Isacco Ernesto 14. Giordana Giordano 15. Guetta Elio 16. Hirsch Giuseppe 17. Iona Ippolito 18. Israeli Paolo 19. Lattes Bruno 20. Levi Mario Emanuele 21. Liuzzi Gabriella 22. Lombroso Enrico 23. Lumbroso Besso Lia 24. Melli Ida Tiziana 25. Melli Roberto 26. Migliau Bellina 27. Milla Angelo 28. Milla Edoardo 29. Modena Marcello 30. Orvieto Angiolo 31. Ottolenghi Carlo 32. Paggi Mario 33. Parasol Feliks Ryszard 34. Pereyra de Leon Giorgio 35. Prister Renzo 36. Salmon Massimo 37. Scazzocchio Graziano 38. Seppilli Giuseppe 39. Sinigaglia Giorgio 40. Sonino Guido 41. Sonnino Flavio 42. Uzielli Paolo 43. Zacutti Giulia 44. Zacutti Tullio Appendix One Appendix Two Bibliography Index LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS Fig. 1: Photograph of Tacchi Venturi performing religious services [TV 1.jpg] Fig. 2: Postcard with the sculpture “Juda’s Betrayal” [TV 5.jpg and TV 6.jpg] Fig. 3: Portrait of Margherita Grassini Sarfatti with her daughter Fiammetta by Emil Przepiórski [final sarfatti.jpg] Fig. 4: Letter of Eugenio Boggiano-Pico to Pietro Tacchi Venturi (22 April 1938) [TV 28 2103.jpg] Fig. 5: Letter of Guido Guidi Buffarini to Tacchi Venturi (December 1938) [TV 28 2170 1.jpg] Fig. 6: Letter of Domenico Tardini to Tacchi Venturi (29 November 1938) [TV 28 2170.jpg] Fig. 7: Letter of Domenico Tardini to Tacchi Venturi (15 October 1938) [TV 28 2153 1.jpg and TV 28 2153 2.jpg] Fig. 8: Letter of Card. Pacelli to Tacchi Venturi (10 January 1939) [TV 28 2188.jpg] Fig. 9: Letter of Tacchi Venturi to Benito Mussolini (3 October 1938) [TV 28 2153 3.jpg and TV 28 2153 4.jpg] Fig. 10: Portrait of Pietro Tacchi Venturi [venturi final.jpg] Fig. 11: Typed application letter for “discrimination” of Ferdinando Cavalieri (9 December 1938) [TV 28 2191a 1.jpg] Fig. 12: Typed résumé of Mario Emanuele Levi with a recommendation letter of Arturo Ciano [TV 30 2303 1.jpg] Fig. 13: Fascist National Party identification card of Baroness Lia Lumbroso Besso [TV 28 2231.jpg] Fig. 14: Letter of Tacchi Venturi to Card. Eugenio Pacelli (6 January 1939) [TV 28 2166.jpg] Fig. 15: Catechumenate Certificate issued to Ida Tiziana Melli by the Bishop Curia of Padua (7 October 1938) [TV 28 2191a 6.jpg] Fig. 16: Roberto Melli, Autoritratto con guanto bianco Fig. 17: Handwritten résumé of Roberto Melli [TV 28 2172 1.jpg] Fig. 18: Portrait of Angiolo Orvieto [final orvieto.jpg] Fig. 19: Letter of Giovanni Battista Montini to Tacchi Venturi (28 November 1938) [TV 28 2167.jpg] Fig. 20: Typed application letter for “discrimination” of the Scazzocchio brothers (3 December 1938) [TV 28 2180 1.jpg]


All those interested in the history of Jesuits, of Catholicism and its relation to Judaism, of Italian fascism, and of racial laws.