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Serenissima Ducale e Comitale Casa d'Este Orioles

Historic data confirms that a branch of the Ducal House of Este lived in Sicily. This collateral branch of the Este family of Modena emigrated in the second half of the sixteenth century to Tortorici (Messina-Sicily). The causes of this migration are uncertain, even though some documents suggest that was due to Duchy court intrigues and a conflicting relationship with the main Este Ducal branch. This hypothesis may explain the choice of a place as Tortorici (Sicily) which is so far from Modena, located in the north of the Italian peninsula. When they arrived to Tortorici, this small unit of the Estense family immediately became part of the city's "Noble Class". For over three centuries many of the Este family held important public offices and held high-ranking positions, both in the Judiciary and in the clergy.

Documents and deeds ranging from 1586 to 1733 showed that the brothers from the emigrated Estense family, namely Domenico, Antonino, Cesare, and Giacomo, were all referred to as “Magnificus” to signify their nobility status. The Duke of Sermoneta and Viceré (Viceroy) of Sicily Francesco Maria Caetani, in the second part of his book “Della Sicilia Nobile” -which focuses on Ceremonial, Precedences, Appellations and Noble Titles- writes that the title of Magnificus was given to noble people. The Magnificus title was suppressed in 1812 with the promulgation of the Constitution.

From Antonino d’ Este born Vincenzo d’ Este who later originated the “Desti” (and “Desti-Baratta”) branch; while Francesco d’ Este (+ 1637) instead became the progenitor of the branch d’ Este Orioles.

Serenissima Ducale e Comitale Casa d'Este Orioles: About Me

The d' Este family of Tortorici in particular the Magnificus Don Domenico d’ Este Junior, founded the Rabico in 1603 (also known as the "Poors Patrimony) and finally as Monte Frumentario. The first Monte Frumentario originated to lend the grain and barley seeds to the poorest peasants for them to sow, and they had a notable diffusion during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Monte Frumentario’s function was to support the agricultural cycle. To this end, the farmers participated offering days of unpaid work (roadies) to sow and crop and the seeds harvested were stored to be distributed to the peasants who did not have any. When there were large surpluses in the warehouses, one part was sold and the money obtained was used for the creation of” Monti Pecuniari” aimed to lend to the farmers money for the costs of the harvest at a rate of 5%.

The book "Tortorici, Le Chiese-Le Contese, Le Opere Pie" (1990) written by the Historian Professor Sebastiano Franchina focuses in detail on the Monte Frumentario d'Este, which was the oldest charitable institution of this kind in Tortorici .

Serenissima Ducale e Comitale Casa d'Este Orioles: Intro

The Orioles Family

The origin of the Orioles family (which later formed the d' Este Orioles House) can be traced to Berengario III Orioles, Baron of Sampiero Sopra Patti and Raccuja (Sicily); his direct descendant Melchiorre was the father of Don Francesco Orioles, who in the year 1637 was the General Mayor of the Sicilian city of Tortorici. Don Francesco Orioles was the nephew of Donna Felicita Orioles of the Barons of Sampiero sopra Patti. In 1663, Don Antonino d’ Este (firstborn of the d' Este family of Tortorici) married the noble woman Ioanna Orioles.

The union of D'Este and Orioles families created a new casata ( noble family) the "d’ Este Orioles". As a marriage gift, the Duke of Sermoneta Don Francesco Maria Caetani ( Viceré (Viceroy) of Sicily -which at that time was under the dominion of Philip III of Spain and IV of Sicily)  granted the County and Lordship of San Giuliano (Messina) to Don Antonino D'Este Orioles by Letter Patent.

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Comital Coat of Arms D'Este Orioles
Letter Patent Vicere’ Caetani (1663)
Transcription Letter Pattent Vicere’ Cae
Serenissima Ducale e Comitale Casa d'Este Orioles: About My Project

The D'Este Orioles of Tortorici and S.A.S.Ercole III d'Este

Duke Antonino I d'Este Orioles

The 30th of October 1798, the legitimate descendant of the Family d' Este Orioles, Antonino d’ Este Orioles, received a Provvedimento di Giustizia (countersigned by the Marquis Gherardo Rangone -the Interior Minister of the House d’ Este) from the Duke of Modena and Reggio Ercole III d’ Este , who was in exile in Venice. Ercole III granted him and the House d’ Este Orioles the Ducal Title and all its prerogatives. 

In 1912 and 1922 , the notarised Heraldry and Genealogy examination report of the Family d’ Este Orioles done by the Archivio Araldico Cimino located in Palermo Sicily confirms the legitimacy of the House d’ Este Orioles genealogy. This important notarised document was written during the Kingdom of Italy ruled by the Royal House of Savoy; during this period the Consulta Araldica (College of Arms instituted by royal decree on 10 October 1869) was functioning and advised the Italian government on noble titles, coats of arms and related matters. It was an important department of the Ministry of the Interior, combining the roles of the various heraldic colleges which had existed in pre-unification Italy.

Serenissima Ducale e Comitale Casa d'Este Orioles: About My Project

Fons Honorum

Since 1798, the Serenissima Ducale e Comitale Casa d’Este Orioles has legitimately - by right of Birth and Succession- exercised the Fons Honorum  and the titles granted by Ercole III d’ Este -Ducato di Reggio e Modena - to Antonino d 'Este Orioles as explained in the Provvedimento di Giustizia. 

The current head of the House d’ Este Orioles is S.A.S Duke Antonino V ; Ercole III “Provvedimento di Giustizia” is kept in the Heraldic Heritage archive of the Serenissima Ducale e Comitale Casa d’Este Orioles. 

Provvedimento di Giustizia
Provvedimento di Giustizia
First Coat of Arms of Duke D'Este Orioles (1800 circa)
House d' Este Orioles Genealogical Tree (Savoy Monarchy period, 1922)
Duke Antonino V D' Este Orioles
Serenissima Ducale e Comitale Casa d'Este Orioles: Intro
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