Palacio de Lavalle

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Italian Branch Della Valle o De Lavalle

Date: 03 Jan 2005
Time: 16:04:31
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Thanks for your impressive site.I made an entry in December 2002 on my family origin from Lavalle(Agordo), Italy. Since then my research has progressed. I found out my family's coat of arms has a red lyon on green background, with a silver strip,surprisingly similar to the lyon of the French branch. Agordo(Far North of Italy)was funded by last Frank King Berengario II ( manuscript dated 923 still existing). The Lavalle castle was documented in year 1148 and its ruins still exist. Despite that territory was originally ruled by lombard and many of my ancestors had clear german names still in XIII century, my theory is that Lavalle was set up by Franks at the end of first millennium, and probably Frank Kings wanted one their vassals to rule out there, a strategic and resouceful site (mines of silver, iron and copper, similar to the mines in Cantabria!) on the Alpine crossroad with the German Empire.The ground for my theory is that Laval was set up in France by a spanish family , their first castle built in 818 ( they must have been well known to Charlemagne's court, he had died only one year before,if I am not wrong). I have no doubts the Della Valle o De Lavalle started from Spain, even if those who emigrated to South Italy and ended with cardinal Della Valle e Pietro Della Valle in Rome left Spain at the beginning of XIIth century (see one historian chronicle of XVIth century), or probably, as you say in your site, came from Rodrigo Della Valle, who went to Calabria in XVth century, whilst my family took probably, if my theory is correct, a far longer trip, left Laval (Maine, between Brittany and Normandy)and crossed the Alps with the Franks at the beginning of Xth century. My specific family sub-branch left Lavalle's castle probably after 1288 and moved into a nearby area, where they settled and staid until year 1894. I can trace my ancestors as back as the end of XVIith century through Church douments, father by father. My family was well known in Belluno(near Agordo) as one of the the most famous families already in XIII and XIV century (Historia Civitatis Bellunii, Piloni, XVith century), serving the ferocius Ezzelino da Romano, one of the best italian vassals of Emperor Frederick II in XIII century (mentioned by Dante Alighieri who obviously sent him to hell!). My Della Valle took part to many battles and seizes, being noted for their value and loyalty to the Emperor. Most of their descendants left those areas during XVth and XVIth century and migrated to Vicenza, Treviso and Padova , where the surname is still popular. I am just lucky that my family staid up there in the mountains until the end of XIXth century so far allowing my to trace the tree in the very well zealously kept registers of Church clericals. It is only a shame that births and deaths started being registered from 1564 (the famous Trent's council Church Reform), but I am confident that 1288 testament I found can prove the move of my family to the site where they were still registered until 1894. Today we are a reesonably wealthy family. I live in Tonbridge(Kent, UK) where I work as a psychiatrist.It would be nice that we could meet at some point, and perhaps exchange some documents (hopefully you are familiar with latin!). I would be particularly interested in reading about the connection between the French and the Spanish branch. I cannot help being proud of such a family history. It spans more then one thousand years history , and I am sure very few European nobles can claim such a long and shining tradition. Why don't we meet for a party? I can afford travelling everywhere. Puertorico? Dr Giovanni Michelle Dalla Valle

Last changed: January 03, 2005