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Surnames and Their Origins – January 2023

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This issue’s surnames begin with the letter R.

RICCARDI – This surname derives from the ancient French first name Richard. It has numerous families with this surname. It is present in all 20 regions, mostly in Lombardia and least in Molise. Variations: Rizzardi, Ricciardelli, Ricciardella.

RIDOLFI – This surname derives from the first name Rodolfo of German origin, consisting of “hroth” = fame, glory and “wulfa” = wolf. It too is widespread and present in 18 regions, mostly in Lazio and least in Calabria. It does not appear in the vital statistic offices in Molise and Val d’Aosta. Variations: Ridolfo, Redolfi, Ridulfo, Rao, Raucci, Raho, Rodolfi.

RINALDI – This surname derives from the first name Rinaldo of German origin. Rinaldo. It like the two above is wide spread and present in all 20 regions, mostly in Lombardia and least in Val d’Aosta. Variations: Rinaldis, Rainaldo, Ranaldo, Renaldi, Rinaudo, Rinauro Reinaudi Reynaudi, Ranaudo, Ranauro, Ranaulo, Ranavolo, Rainoldi, Renoldi, Rinallo, Ranalli, Rinaldelli, Rinaldini, Rinaldin, Renaldini, Rinalduzzi, Rainalducci, Ranucci, Ranuzzi.

RIVA – This surname derives from the Italian word “riva” from the Latin “ripa” meaning shore or bank of a river. It indicates a family that lives near a shore or a bank or coming from a place with that name. The ancestors of these families probably live along the edge of a river. It is widespread and present in all 20 regions It is most present in Lombardia. Variations: Ripani, Ripa.

ROCCA – This surname is derived from names of places consisting of the word “rocca,” meaning rock or fortress. It is present in all 20 regions, mostly in Lombardia and least in Val d’Aosta. Variations: Rocco, Rocci.

ROCCHEGIAINI – This surname derives from the first name “Rocco,” or derived from the word “rocca” meaning rock or fortress, from names of places consisting of rock in Italy. It also is thought of as a possibly fusion of the two names Rocco and Giovanni. It is not very common and is present in only nine regions, mostly in Marche. Variations: Rocchelli, Rocchesani, Rocchesi Rocchetti, Rocchini, Roccuzzo Rocconi, Roccardi, Rocchesso, Roccato.

ROMAGNOLI – This surname derives from the name of the region of Emilia Romagna, to indicate someone coming from there. For obvious reason, It is present in all 20 regions and for obvious reasons is most prevalent in Emilia-Romagna and least in Basilicata. Variations: Romagna, Romagnoni, Romagnino.

ROMANO – This surname derives from the adjective “romano,” meaning citizen of Rome. It presence is large and present in all 20 regions, but the largest number is not in Lazio as one might think. It largest presence is in neighboring Campania. Val d’Aosta has the smallest number of familes with the surname Romano. Variations: Romani, Romanelli, Romanetti, Romanini, Romanazzi, Romanati, Romanatti.

ROSELLI – This surname derives from the Italian name of the flower, “rosa” meaning rose. It is present in all 20 regions and the ancestors of the present-day families with the surname were probably florists or had large flower gardens. It is most present in Toscana and least found in Val d’Aosta. Variations: Rosa, Rosello, Rosati, Rosellini, Rosiello, Rosetti, Rosini, Rosoni, Rosatto.

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