The distinguished surname Gravina 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, the nickname
type of surname is also frequently found. Nickname
surnames were derived from an eke-name, or added name. They usually reflected the physical characteristics or attributes of the first person that used the name. The surname Gravina came from the personal name
Grazia. The name is originally Latin from the name Gratius. The name Gratius was originally derived from the word gratus, which means dear, beloved.
Early Origins of the Gravina family
The surname Gravina was first found in the region of Umbria, in the ancient city of Perugia, well known today for the large number of foreign students at its University. Records are found dating to 1232, when Giacomo Graziani was made General Captain of the Florentine Republic and was forced to go against the Sienese forces.
Early History of the Gravina family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gravina research. More information is included under the topic Early Gravina History in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Gravina Spelling Variations
Enormous variation in spelling and form characterizes those Italian names that originated in the medieval era. This is caused by two main factors: regional tradition, and inaccuracies in the recording process. Before the last few hundred
years, scribes spelled names according to their sounds. Spelling variations
were the unsurprising result. The variations of Gravina include Grazia, Grazi, Grazzi, Di Grazia, Delle Grazie, Grazzini, Grazioli, Graziotti, Graziosi, Grazioso, Graziuso, Graziussi and many more.
Early Notables of the Gravina family (pre 1700)
Prominent among members of the family was Francesco Graziani, Bishop of Perugia in 1339; Antonio Francesco Grazzini, a Florentine poet and dramatist born in 1503. He came from an honorable and ancient family and among his most famous works was "Le Cene," a collection of 22 tales told by 5 youths... Another 115 words (8 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Gravina Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Gravina family to the New World and Oceana
Immigrants bearing the name Gravina or a variant listed above include:
Gravina Settlers in United States in the 20th Century
- Alcepto Gravina, aged 29, who landed in America from Amelia, Italy, in 1907
- Angelantonio Gravina, aged 39, who emigrated to the United States from Portico, Italy, in 1909
- Angela Gravina, aged 39, who landed in America from Italy, in 1911
- Adamo Gravina, aged 23, who emigrated to the United States from Campli, Italy, in 1913
- Addolorato Gravina, aged 20, who settled in America from Ortanova, Italy, in 1916
- ... (More are available in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.)
Gravina Settlers in Canada in the 18th Century
- Peter, Marquis Gravina, who arrived in Nova Scotia in 1749-1752