"Libro d'Oro di Melita"
The Noble family of Testaferrata, Patricians of Messina, (Branch #2, following the order established by the regrant of that title in 1792 to various lines)
- Line of the Marchese Daniele Testaferrata De Noto (cont.)
All Corrections/Additions are Welcome
Includes an examination of the claim a Maltese ti di San Vincenzo Ferreri” was created in 1725.
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Last Update: 21-09-2017.
To see the ancestry of Mario Testaferrata de Robertis, go to Capo di Ferro (Testaferrata).
* Mario Testaferrata de Robertis, (1654-1747), “Marquis of San Vincenzo Ferreri”, (Cr: 1716 (?) (see footnotes below), 1st Marquis Testaferrata, (Cr: 1717- see Marchese Testaferrata), Most Illustrious and Noble (1725), married Firstly 1677 to Anna de Noto Cumbo, with issue, Married Secondly 1697 to Elisabetta Castelletti, with issue, Married thirdly 1727 to Alticunda Vassallo Castelletti, with issue.
For issue SEE: Testaferrata Branch #2
Footnote#1: On the 28 May 1901 the Italian Consulta Araldica gave a judgment no. 2408 stating that the Italian Crown disassociated itself from the title Marchese di San Vincenzo Ferreri, in the Kingdom of Naples, granted in 1716 to Mario Testaferrata since at the date of creation “il napolitano non era piu’ nel dominio del Re di Spagna”.
Most published sources overlook the fact that the grant of 1716 is null and void.
Moreover, it cannot be said that the 1725 act reads as giving rise to any form of remainder of the title in question: Consequently, the best argument possible would be that that the only effect of the 1725 “legitimation” was to allow Mario Testaferrata the personal right to that designation. That is to say the act of 1725 did not allow ulterior succession from Mario of the title known as San Vincenzo Ferreri.
Therefore the published claim that the local recognition rendered the title “a purely Maltese title created by Magistral fiat…….that it is not subject to Italian or Spanish law but only to Maltese law, which allows females to inherit in the absence of males” is not supported by the text.
Footnote#2: According to Gauci, C.A. “The Genealogy and Heraldry of the Maltese families of Malta” page 375: “Regardless of the controversial origins of the title, within the Principality of Malta at least, Testaferrata and his descendants became Marquises of San Vincenzo Ferreri. This local recognition enabled the Royal Commissioners to recommend that recognition also be extended by the British Crown, thus the title of “Marquis of San Vincenzo Ferreri” vecame part of the present-day Maltese Nobility. From a legal point of view it must be regarded as a purely Maltese title created by direct Magistral Fiat in 1725. It therefore follows that it is not subject to Italian or Spanish law, but only to Maltese law, which allows females to inherit in the absence of males.” (sic.)
Footnote#3: Mario Testaferrata was one of the very first recipients of the right to Illustrissimo e Nobile. Owing to a great abuse which had crept in, of notaries and lawyers giving the style of Nobile and Illustrissimo to many persons indiscriminately in public documents, the Grand Master de Vilhena issued a Pragmatic in the year 1725 in which he criminalized such unauthorized use. A copy verbatim of the Pragmatic dated 30th April 1725 is found in the sub-Enclosure in Enclosure No. 3 in the letter from Governor Simmons to The Earl of Derby dated 28 October 1884 which is published in Copies or Extracts of Correspondence with reference to the Maltese Nobility (In Continuation of C-3812) presented to the House of Lords by Command of Her Majesty, May 1886. In the said copy verbatim, there is what appears to be an exhaustive list of the persons who at different times received from the said Grandmaster and his successors, an exception from the aforesaid pragmatic, thereby allowing them the right to use the styles of Most Illustrious and Noble, namely: (1) Milite Barone Marc' Antonio Inguanez (See Djar il-Bniet) and his wife Baronessa Inguanez (See Gomerino) (30 April 1725); (2)Barone di Cicciano Fabritio Testaferrata (See:Castel Cicciano) and his mother the Baronessa di Gomerino Beatrice Cassia Testaferrata (See Gomerino), (11 May 1725), (3) Marchese di San Vincenzo Ferreri Mario Testaferrata (See: San Vincenzo Ferreri) (9 July 1725), (4) Carlo Falson (See Falson), and Eleanora Testaferrata (See: Capo di Ferro) (13 June 1726), (5) Barone di San Marciano Diego Galea Feriolo (See: San Marciano), (2 September 1726), (6) Barone Gio Pio De Piro (See De Piro) (19 March 1727), (7) Canon Giuseppe di Costanzo (See Paganica), and Donna Rosa (See De Noto),widow of Gio Battista di Costanzo (24 May 1729), (8) Barone Isidoro Viani (See: Tabria), (27 June 1730), (9) D. Vincenzo Platamone (See Platamone),and Antonio Bonnici (??), (10) Baldassare Bonnici (13 January 1732), (11) Calcerano Mompalao (See: Mompalao)), Giuseppe and Caterina Cuschieri (See: Frigenuini) (6 March 1732), (12) Barone Saverio Gatt (See: Benwarrad) (23 August 1737), (13) Signor Ludovico Bianchi (See: Bianchi) (25 October 1741), (14) Dr.Ugolino Bonnici (5 September 1794), (15) Dr. Saverio Crispo (See:Crispo) (??)
Footnote#4: The title of Marchese di San Vincenzo Ferreri, in the Kingdom of Naples, was by Philip V, King of Spain and of the Two Sicilies, conferred upon Mario Testaferrata, by a patent dated the 10th November 1716, registered in a book called Privilegm Neap. X. fol. CCLVIII. Some published sources show the title of Marchese di San Vincenzo Ferreri as being Spanish in origin (as different to a Neapolitan title being granted by the King of Spain in his capacity as King of Naples). This it is not. The grant clearly purports the title to be based in Naples. Moreover, as has been discussed elsewhere under the title of Marchese De Piro is to be recalled that according to the rules set by Philip V’s predecessor (Philip IV) a Spanish Marquisate could only be granted if the grantee is already in possession of a title of Count or Viscount. In the grant to Testaferrata, there is no indication that he was ever in possession of either criterion.
Footnote#5: The following is an extract from that patent: Tenore igitur praesentium ex certa scientia, regiaque auctoritate nostra, deliberato et consulto, ac ex gratia speciali maturaque sacri nostril Supremi Consilii accedente deliberatione, praefatum Don Marium Testaferrata, Sacri Romani Imperii equitem Tornearium, et cujus patria est insula Melitana, Illustrem Marchionem, in dicto Regno Neapolis Sancti Vincentii Ferreri ejusque haeredes et successores ex suo corpore legitime descendentes, praedicto ordine successivo servato, dicimus creamus et nominamus, ab aliisque in omnibus et quibuscumque actis et scriptures dici et nominari olumus et perpetuo reputari jubemus
Footnote #6: This title did not originate in Malta but in Naples. At Maltese Law it is only a foreign title and, as such, it can be considered for the purposes of precedence only if registration or Magistral recognition has been achieved in accordance with the rules of 1739 and 1795 as enacted by Grand Masters Despuig and Rohan. In this case, the 1716 patent was never registered in Malta, and technically the title is not entitled to any precedence whatsoever. However, the 1878 Commissioners held that the default of its registration is amply supplied by the direct recognition of it on the 9th July 1725, in the person of the original grantee, Mario Testaferrata, by Grand Master Manoel when said Mario Testaferrata received the right to be styled “Most Illustrious and Noble”.
Footnote #7:On the basis of the fact that since the conclusion of the 1878 report, it results only now that in fact the grantor was not acting in his correct capacity, one may not attempt to supplement the conclusions of the 1878 Commissioners. One cannot argue that had the Commissioners been aware of the defect, they would have regarded the 1716 ‘legitimated’ by the act of 1725.
Footnote #8: The claim that the 1725 act of recognition was tantamount to rendering the title subject to Maltese rules of succession is not supported by the text.
PAGES RELATED TO THE ABOVE GENEALOGY:-
* Key to Genealogies of titles of nobility;
Corrections and updating.