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The distinguished surname Didonato originated in an area of Italy, known as the Papal States. Although people were originally known only by a single name, it became necessary for people to adapt a second name to identify themselves as populations grew and travel became more frequent. The process of adopting fixed hereditary surnames was not complete until the modern era, but the use of hereditary family names in Italy began in the 10th and 11th centuries. Italian hereditary surnames were developed according to fairly general principles and they are characterized by a profusion of derivatives coined from given names. Although the most traditional type of family name found in the region of the Papal States is the patronymic surname, which is derived from the father's given name, local surnames are also found. Local names, which are the least frequent of the major types of surnames found in Italy, are derived from a place-name where the original bearer once resided or held land. Often Italian local surnames bore the prefix "di," which signifies emigration from one place to another, but does not necessarily denote nobility. The Didonato family lived in the city of Assisi in 1160.

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The surname Didonato was first found in the region of Umbria, where earliest records show that a Donato lived in the city of Assisi in 1160 and was of the Guelph faction.

Spelling variations of this family name include: Donato, Donati, Dona, De Donato, De Dona, Di Donato, Donatelli, Donatello, Donatini, Donadini, Donatoni, Donadoni and many more.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Didonato research. More information is included under the topic Early Didonato History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 307 words (22 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Didonato Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Didonato Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Alfonso Didonato, aged 48, who emigrated to the United States, in 1892
  • Alessandro Didonato, aged 47, who settled in America from Tugnoli, in 1893

Didonato Settlers in United States in the 20th Century


  • Angelo DiDonato, aged 20, who emigrated to America from Pietranico, in 1901
  • Carlo DiDonato, aged 24, who emigrated to the United States from Terano, Italy, in 1905
  • Annemzista DiDonato, aged 58, who landed in America from Trasacco, Italy, in 1907
  • Antonio DiDonato, aged 18, who landed in America from Campli, Teramo, Italy, in 1908
  • Carmine DiDonato, aged 58, who settled in America from Castegliano Ravimondo, Italy, in 1910


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  • Pietro Di Donato (1911-1992), American writer and bricklayer, best known for his novel, Christ in Concrete
  • Pedro Di Donato (1911-1992), American writer, one of the most celebrated Italian American novelists of the mid-20th century
  • Gregory L. "Greg" DiDonato (b. 1963), American politician, Member of the Ohio Senate (1997-2004), Member of the Ohio House of Representatives (1991-1994)
  • Emily DiDonato (b. 1991), American fashion model for Maybelline, Giorgio Armani
  • Anthony DiDonato Jr. (1911-1989), American Democratic member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives (1975-1976)
  • Joyce DiDonato (b. 1969), award winning American operatic mezzo-soprano
  • Joseph A. DiDonato, American politician, Mayor of West Milford, New Jersey, 2007
  • Greg L. DiDonato, American Democrat politician, Candidate for U.S. Representative from Ohio 18th District, 1994; Delegate to Democratic National Convention from Ohio, 2004
  • Camille DiDonato, American politician, Candidate for Presidential Elector for New Jersey, 1972
  • Daniele Di Donato (b. 1977), Italian football midfielder

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  1. Guelfi Camajani, Piero. Dizionario Araldico 1940 Reprint Arnoaldo Forni. Milan: 1978. Print.
  2. Glazier, Ira A. and P. Williams Filby Edition. Italians to America. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield. Print.
  3. Dizionario Biografico degli Italiani. Rome Istituto della Enciclopedia Italiana 56 volumesr. Print.
  4. Di Crollalanza, Goffredo. Enciclopedia araldico cavalleresca Prontuario nobiliare. Pisa: Presso La Direzione Del Giorale Araldica , 1878. Print.
  5. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  6. Rietstap, Johannes Baptist. Armorial Général. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  7. Bascapè, Giacomo and Marcello del Piazzo. Insegne e Simboli Araldica pubblica e privata medievale e moderna. Rome: 1983. Print.
  8. Rasmussen, Louis J. . San Francisco Ship Passenger Lists 4 Volumes Colma, California 1965 Reprint. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1978. Print.
  9. Battilana, Natale, Ed. Genealogie Dello Famiglie Nobili di Genova. Genova: Fratelli Pagano, 1825. Print.
  10. Bongioanni, Angelo. Nomi e Cognomi. Saggio di Ricerche Etimologiche e Storiche. Torino: A. Forni, 1979. Print.
  11. ...


This page was last modified on 15 January 2016 at 13:38.

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