That most ancient family of Latini from Collalto, which can trace its origins to the likes of the Counts of Rieti and the Mareri of Abruzzo, from the Counts of Marsi. Around the turn of the first millennium the territory of Collalto ... read
That most ancient family of Latini from Collalto, which can trace its origins to the likes of the Counts of Rieti and the Mareri of Abruzzo, from the Counts of Marsi. Around the turn of the first millennium the territory of Collalto was the property of the Abbey of Farfa that had leased it to one of the branches of the Counts of Marsi. Towards the end of the 11th century the Counts of Marsi asked Richard the Norman for help in order to settle the problem of the succession amongst the Marsi heirs. After alternating events, the Normans settled down in the region between 1146 and 1155 for good. They reorganized the whole territory of the County of Marsi by creating smaller feuds, governed by nobles they could trust. The birth of Collalto can be traced back to this time and so can the dynasty of the feudal family of the Collaltos. This was a strategic territory at the borders between the reign of Sicily and the Papal States, an island under the direct jurisdiction and eminent sovereignty of the Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, the only authority it had to be loyal to. It was this way that, when fighting against the Pope over the control of Northern Italy, Frederick II of Swabia, 1194 -1250, could guarantee the communication between his Reign and Northern Italy and Europe without passing through Rome. From the 13th to the 15th century, the sirs of Collalto, Pandolfo, Rainaldo, Roberto, Oddone, Giovanni, Ludovico, exercised feudal rights over many villages lying between the Turano Valley and the Salto Valley. Between 1266 and 1268 the militiamen of Collalto fought in Tagliacozzo and Benevento, changing sides and supporting either the Swabians or the Angevins and yet always at the front directly commanded either by Conradin and Frederick I of Baden or by Charles of Anjou and Erardo of Vallery.
In 1297, King Charles II of Anjou ordered the leader of Abruzzi ”to give back to the Church the lands and castles previously owned by Pietro Colonna of Rome, the brothers Francesco, Filippo, Corrado, Federico, Mareri, Roberto and Oddone of Collalto” because they had particularly favoured the House of Swabia. After becoming part of the Pope's State and the ensuing feuds from 1300 to 1400, until the breaking up of the district in two main areas, the Contado of Mareri, part of the Reign of Naples and the Barony of Collalto, part of the Pope's State, the House progressively lost its judicial rights that definitely disappeared in 1500 with Latino.
Starting from the 16th century, the Pope's State consolidated its borders east of Rome. The Savelli family seized Collalto, broke up the feud and started building and fortifying the Castle, an enterprise carried on by the Soderini and Barberini families.
Against the all powerful Savellis, (15th and 16th century) and together with 73 other families, Latino of Collalto organized the Magnificent Community of Collalto. With Leonardo of Collalto (16th century, who married Giovanna Costantina Orsini of Vivaro), son of Latino, the feudal family took the name of Latini and also the following generations were landowners and produced eminent members of the Sabina community: Alfonso (1678-1759), Magnificent Prior of Collalto; Carlo (1713-1786), Professor of Philosophy and Theology, Knight of the Golden Spur and Count Palatine; Alfonso (1761-1840), Doctor in Physics and Medicine, Governor of Collalto; Charles (1797-1841), Theologian and Professor of Law, Canon and Vicar General of Rieti, buried in the Cathedral of that town; Vincenzo (1802-1882), Chemist, Professor at Rome University and member of the Lincean Academy, buried in Rome in S. Lorenzo in Miranda; Bartolomeo (1816-1861), Surgeon, Capitan of the National Guard, who died defending Collalto in 1861*; Giuseppe (1857-1938), His Sanctity's private prelate, Count Monteromano, Baron of the Manziana, Promoter of Justice of the Holy Office, Professor of Penal Law.
*On February 13th 1861, Collalto, then a village supporting the Liberals, was put under siege by some Bourbon soldiers; despite strenuously fighting back, the village was overwhelmed and put to fire and sword.