Monday, 25 November 2013
Royal map of Italy
In my continued search for map postcards, I came across an unusual map of Italy with the faces of the last royal family superimposed on it. The card itself isn't in very good condition but nevertheless interesting. I've seen a similar one which has the lines"Avanti, Savoia! non anche Tutta désti la bandiera al vento", lines from a poem by Giosuè Carducci (1835-1907), printed on it. My attempts to translate these lines have not made any sense.
At the top is Victor Emmanuel II (Sua Maestà il Re) with the queen, Sua Maestà la Regina, born Elena of Montenegro. Following down the shape of Italy, first is their only son Umberto who was to reign for one month from May 1946 until June the same year. The May king.
Then we see his sisters, Iolanda, Mafalda (who died in Buchenwald concentration camp), Giovanna (who became Queen of Bulgaria) and finally Maria.
The cities/towns marked along the coast of what is now Croatia, are part of Istria which has been held by various countries. In 1919 after World War I, it was given to Italy until in 1947 it was given to the then Yugoslavia until it broke up in 1991.
My grandfather came from Italy and though I never knew him, I always feel a particular interest in anything Italian. This card has taught me a little Italian history - I hadn't known there was a royal family quite so recently.