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Latifundia was the religious name taken by the Italian woman Scintilla Sforza following her witness to a Fidgettine apparition (Saint Fidgeta and Other Parodies; 14).

Background

Sforza was was the daughter of a rich Florentine banker who owned an impressive 800-acre tract of land near Tormento, Italy. She was known for having a "checkered reputation" and attending and/or hosting celebrations, or levées[1], at the ruins of Emperor Nero's Golden House.

In 1272 Sforza was visited by an apparition of Fidgeta and constructed a shrine to Fidgeta. She later founded the Order of Faithful Fidgettines.

Inspiration

Scintilla: a small spark or flash; a small or trace amount[2].

Sforza was a ruling family of Renaissance Italy, based in Milan. They acquired the dukedom and Duchy of Milan in the mid-15th century and lost it about a century later. Giovanni Sforza (1466–1510) was the first husband of the legendary Lucrezia Borgia[3], herself the daughter of Rodrigo Borgia – better known as Pope Alexander VI.  John borrowed the surname but, as the context makes clear, this woman is fictional.

Latifundium: a great landed estate with absentee ownership and labor often in a state of partial servitude[4]. Popular in ancient Rome, the concept goes hand-in-hand with Marilyn Fitschen's depiction of the workers at Santa Fidgeta.

Assuming a new name is common in Catholic tradition. When a person is baptized or confirmed, he or she takes on a new name symbolizing the new life they have entered into.

Reference

  1. Wikipedia: Levée
  2. Wiktionary: Scintilla
  3. Wikipedia: Giovanni Sforza
  4. Wiktionary: Latifundium

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