The distinguished surname Coli can be traced back to the ancient and beautiful region of Sicily
, which is located off Southwestern Italy and incorporates the island of Sicily
itself, the area of Naples, and the southern part of the Italian peninsula. Although people were originally known only by a single name, it became necessary for people to adopt 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 were characterized by a profusion of derivatives coined from given names. The most common type of family name found in the region of Sicily
is the patronymic
surname, which is derived from the father's given name. During the Middle Ages, Italians adopted the patronymic system of name-making because it perfectly complemented the prevailing Feudal
System. In Italy the popularity of patronymic type of surname is also due to the fact that during the Christian era, people often named their children after saints and biblical figures. The surname Coli was derived from the given name Nicola or Nicholas. The Italian name Nicola is derived from the Latin name Nicolaus, which means to win and laos, which means people.
Early Origins of the Coli family
The surname Coli was first found in at Lecce, the historic city in southern Italy, the capital of the province of Lecce and a port city located on the southern tip of the Italian peninsula in the 14th century, where Francesco Colaci was an architect.
Early History of the Coli family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Coli research. More information is included under the topic Early Coli History in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Coli Spelling Variations
Italian surnames come in far more variations than the names of most other nationalities. Regional traditions and dialects are a decisive factor in this characteristic. For example, northern names tend to end in "o", while southern in "i". Also important, but not unique to Italy, was the fact that before dictionaries and the printing press most scribes simply spelled words according to their sounds. The predictable result was an enormous number of spelling variations
. The recorded spellings of Coli include Cola, Coli, Colao, De Cola, Di Cola, Colella, Colelli, Culella, Coletta, Coletti, Culletta, Culle, Colitta, Colini, Colino, Coluccia, Coluccio, Colucci, Coluccello, Colucciello, Colussi, Colusso, Colaucci, Colaussi, Colauzzi, Colecchia, Colicchia, Colicchio, Culicchia, Culicchi, Colizza, Colizzi, Colotti, Colutta, Culotta, Cullotta, Cull, Colazzo, Colaci, Colace, Colacino, Colacione, Colardo, Colasio, Colosi, Colazza, Colaizzi, Colacicchi, Colato and many more.
Early Notables of the Coli family (pre 1700)
Prominent among bearers of this surname in early times was Gennaro di Cola (c.
1320-c. 1370), an Italian painter of the Trecento; Cola di Rienzo (or di Rienzi) (c.
1313-1354), an Italian medieval politician and popular leader; Malteo Colaci, an intellectual during the 15th century; Agostino and Benedetto Colazza were priests... Another 73 words (5 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Coli Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Coli family to the New World and Oceana
An examination of many early immigration records reveals that people bearing the name Coli arrived in North America very early: Antonio Colello, aged 17, who arrived at Ellis Island
in 1913; Domenico Colello, aged 23, who arrived at Ellis Island
from Caramanico in 1893; Eurico Colello, aged 28, who arrived at Ellis Island