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Source: Heritage Italian-American Style by Leon J. Radomile

Take the quiz in English or Italian

1) (Science) The most famous mathematical equation on earth, E = MC2, was

actually formulated and published by an Italian from Vicenza two years before Albert

Einstein’s major paper in 1905. This Italian did not discover the theory of relativity, but

there is no doubt that he was the first to use the equation while speculating about ether

in the life of the universe. *Identify this forgotten Italian.


a) Olinto De Pretto  b) Umberto Bartocci  c)  Michele Besso d)  Francesco Redi

La formula matematica più famosa del mondo, E=MC2, fu postulata e pubblicata

da un vicentino due anni prima quella di Einstein nel 1905. Questo italiano non

scoprì la teoria della relatività ma è fuori di dubbio che fosse stato il primo ad

usare questa equazione nelle sue speculazioni sull’etere nella vita dell’universo.

*Identificate questo scienziato dimenticato.

a) Olinto De Pretto b) Umberto Bartocci c) Michele Besso d) Francesco Redi

2) (U.S. History) His parents emigrated in the 1730’s from the Italian city of Siena to

Maryland, where he was born on October 30, 1740. In July 1776, he was one of four

Maryland representatives who signed the Declaration of Independence. In 1789,

President Washington appointed him a federal judge for the state of Maryland, a position he held until his death in 1799. *Identify this Italian-American signer of the Declaration of Independence.


a) Philip Mazzei  b) William Paca  c) Henry Tonti  d) Francis Vigo


I genitori di questo illustre italiano emigrarono nel 1730 dalla città di Siena nello

stato del Maryland, dove egli nacque il 30 ottobre 1740. Nel luglio del 1776 egli fu

uno dei quattro rappresentanti del Maryland che firmarono la dichiarazione

d’indipendenza. Nel 1789 il presidente Washington lo nominò giudice federale per

lo stato del Maryland, posizione che mantenne fino alla morte avvenuta nel 1799.

*Identificate questo italiano firmatario della dichiarazione d’indipendenza.

a) Philip Mazzei  b) William Paca  c) Henry Tonti   d) Francis Vigo

lvetica Light is an easy to read font, with tall and narrow letters, that wo

3) (Cuisine) With Julia Child, this man founded the prestigious American Institute of

Wine and Food. His California winery, established in 1966, is still one of California’s

largest wine producers, exporting wines all over the world. *Who was this respected

entrepreneur whose family is from the Marche region of Italy?

a) Paolo Rossi  b) Ernest Gallo  c) Robert Mondavi  d) August Sebastiani


Insieme a Julia Child, quest’uomo ha fondato il prestigioso American Institute of

Wine and Food. La sua azienda vinicola della California, fondata nel 1966, è

ancora una delle maggiori dello stato, ed esporta vini in tutto il mondo. *Chi è

questo celebre imprenditore la cui famiglia è originaria delle Marche?

a) Paolo Rossi  b) Ernest Gallo  c) Robert Mondavi  d) August Sebastiani

4) (Entertainment/singer) He was nominated for an Oscar for his portrayal of a shell-shocked G.I. in the 1964 movie, Captain Newman, M.D. *Who was this 1960 Grammy winner?

a) Fabian  b) Frankie Valli  c) Bobby Darin  d) Frankie Avalon

Fu candidato a un Oscar nel 1964 per la sua interpretazione dell'ispettore reduce di guerra nel film Captain Newman, M.D. *Chi è questo attore vincitore di un Grammy nel 1960?


a) Fabian  b) Frankie Valli  c) Bobby Darin  d) Frankie Avalon

5) (Business) They are the first family of pyrotechnics. Over the past decade, they

have produced all the major firework programs in the United States including six

consecutive US Presidential Inaugurations to the spectacular grand openings of the

Bellagio and Atlantis hotels in Las Vegas. *Who is this family that has redefined the art

of pyrotechnics?


a) Rozzi Family  b) Polo Family  c) Grucci Family  d) Zambelli Family


Questa è la prima famiglia di pirotecnci. Nello scorso decennio, sono stati loro a

produrre i maggiori programmi di fuochi d’artificio negli Stati Uniti, compresi le

inaugurazioni presidenziali e le inaugurazioni degli hotel Bellagio e Atlantis a Las

Vegas. *Qual’è questa famiglia che ha ridefinito la pirotecnia?


a)  Famiglia di Rozzi  b) Famiglia di Polo  c) Famiglia di Grucci  d)  Famiglia di Zambelli

6) (Romans) Vesta was the virgin goddess and the center of Roman mythology. She

was the custodian of the sacred fire, which was never allowed to be extinguished, least a national calamity should follow. *The sacred fire was brought by Aeneas from what city, claimed to be the origin of Rome and its people?


a) Athens  b) Troy  c) Sparta  d) Olympia


Vesta era la dea vergine di Roma e figura centrale della mitologia romanica. Era

lei a custodire il fuoco sacro che non si doveva mai lasciar spegnere per non

scatenare calamità nazionali. *Il sacro fuoco fu portato a Roma da Enea da quale



a) Athens  b) Troy  c) Sparta   d) Olympia

7) (Sports) In 1920, New York Yankees center fielder, Francesco Stephano

Pezzolo, nicknamed his friend and teammate George Herman Ruth, The

Bambino, which thousands of Ruth fans immediately adopted. Pezzolo, a

Genoese Italian American from San Francisco as ironically forced to change

his Italian name and was known to baseball fans by what other name?


a) Lefty O’Mally  b) Frank “Ping” Bodie  c) Kam MacLeod   d) Bob “The Moose” Meusel


Nel 1920 il centrocampista degli Yankees di New York, Francesco Pezzolo,

diede al suo compagno di squadra George Herman Ruth il soprannome il

bambino, che i fan di Ruth adottarono subito con simpatia. Pezzolo, italo

Americano genovese di San Francisco, fu invece ironicamente costretto a

cambiare il proprio nome. *Con quale nome lo conoscevano i suoi fan?

a) Lefty O’Mally  b) Frank “Ping” Bodie  c) Kam MacLeod   d) Bob “The Moose” Meusel


8) (Entertainment/actor) Who was the wrestler and actor vividly remembered as the

thug, Luca Brazzi, in the movie, The Godfather?


Pasquale Tarantino b) Vito Antonelli c) Lenny Montana d) Joe Ciampi


Chi era il lottatore e l’attore che impersonava il malvivente Luca Brazzi nel film Il padrino?


a) Pasquale Tarantino b) Vito Antonelli c) Lenny Montana d) Joe Ciampi

9) (History) Who said the following: “Since love and fear can hardly exist together if we must choose between them, it is far safer to be feared than loved.”


a) Julius Caesar  b) Niccolò Machiavelli   c) Benito Mussolini   d) Vince Lombardi


Chi pronunciò la seguente frase: “Siccome amore e paura non possono

coesistere, se proprio dobbiamo scegliere, è meglio essere temuti che amati”.


a)  Julius Caesar  b) Niccolò Machiavelli   c) Benito Mussolini   d) Vince Lombardi

10) (Literature) Italian professor Martino Iuvara claims that his exhaustive research indicates that this world renowned playwright’s real name was Michelangelo Crollalanza and furthermore, that he was born in the Sicilian port city of Messina. *Identify the playwright.


a) Christopher Marlowe  b) Ben Jonson  c) William Shakespeare

d) John Webster


Il professore italiano Martino Iuvara sostiene che il vero nome di questo scrittore

teatrale famoso nel mondo sia Michelangelo Crollalanza e che, inoltre, egli sia

nato a Messina. *A quale scrittore si riferisce Iuvara?


a)  Christopher Marlowe  b) Ben Jonson   c) William Shakespeare   d) John Webster

1)  a)  Olinto De Pretto (1857-1921) was an Italian industrialist and physicist from Schio,

Vicenza, Italy.


2)  b)  William Paca (October 31, 1740 – October 13, 1799) Elected to the Maryland

legislature in 1771 and appointed to the Continental Congress 1774. He was reelected,

serving until 1779, when he became chief justice of the state of Maryland. In 1782 he was

elected governor of Maryland and in 1789, became federal district judge for the state of

Maryland until his death in 1799.


3)  c)  Robert Gerald Mondavi (June 18, 1913 – May 16, 2008) graduated Phi Sigma Kappa

from Stanford University in 1937 with a degree in economics and business administration.


4)  c)  Bobby Darin (May 14, 1936 – December 20, 1973) born Walden Robert Cassotto, very

popular during the 50s and 60s as a night club, big band and rock and roll performer.


5)  c)  Grucci family – pyrotechnic tradition began in 1850 in Bari, Puglia, Italy. Was the first

American company to win the prestigious Monte Carlo fireworks competition in 1979.

Family immigrated to United States and began Fireworks by Grucci on Long Island in



6)  b)  Troy – Aeneas was a Trojan hero and son of the goddess Venus. With the fall of Troy

to the Greeks, Aeneas escaped to Italy with his followers and became the progenitors of

the Romans.


7)  b)  Frank “Ping” Bodie (Oct. 8, 1887 – Dec. 17, 1961) Francesco Stephano Pezzolo was

born in San Francisco. One of the most feared sluggers in the 1910s, Bodie was

nicknamed "Ping" for the sound made when his fifty-two-ounce bat crashed into the

"dead" ball of his era.


8)  c)  Lenny Montana (March 13, 1926 – May 12, 1992) born Leonardo Passofaro in

Brooklyn, N.Y. American actor/professional wrestler was best known for his role of feared

assassin Luca Brasi in The Godfather.


9)  b)  Niccolò Machiavelli (3 May 1469 – 21 June 1527) was a philosopher, writer, and

politician and is considered one of the main founders of modern political science. A prime

example of the Renaissance Man, he was also a poet, musician, playwright, diplomat and

political philosopher.


10)  c)  William Shakespeare – True or not, you must admit that Shakespeare loved to write

about Italians, as many of works were Italian themed.


                       100%  -- 10 Correct --  Ph.D. - You are an Italian Cultural Genius

                         90%  --   9 Correct --  MA degree - Honorable

                         80%  --   8 Correct --  BA  degree - Respectable

                         70%  --   7 or less  --  Further study is recommended 

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Reading this book will make you an Italian Cultural Genius.  The book for Italian Americans and those who wish they were!



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