Other Data about di Demetrio Family from Triest

For those who have read our previous post about the Institutions of di Demetrio family and our essay Old Things from the Past…. the connection between di Demetrio family and Triest is not new.

Dimitrij IX Vasilievich di Demetrio  was born in Triest and was active there during the most part of his life. His family, at least in the XIXth century had a strong, influent position there.

Vasilievich means his patronim, his father’s name : Vasilij or Basilio. Di Demetrio is the genitive form of Dimitrij or Demetrios; in Greek the genitive form would be Dimitriou. However, a noble family di Demetrio was well-known in Triest, belonging to the Greek community from that city, and being considered of noble origin.

The Demetrios were rich and benefactors, had some contacts with the Hellenic Resistance against the Ottomans, with Freemasonry , and are mentioned as a distinguished family in the Greek community. Here the article of Mme. Lucia Marcheselli Loukas is giving a short history of the Triestine Greek community, mentioning the  di Demetrios too: (Lucia Marcheselli Loukas I Greci Trieste).

With the noble family of barons Economo (Ekonomou) the di Demetrios were playing an important role in the  Trade and Industry Chamber from Triest, Giovanni Antonio di Demetrio being between 1905-1913 president of that corporation, assisted by Economo. They were trading cereals especially from Romania, Galatz, as records of the Trade Chamber are mentioning. See the work of Tabo, Grazia – Deputazioni di borsa poi Camera di Comercio e d’Industria di Trieste (1755-1921), Trieste, 2000, Archivio dello Stato, available even here: http://www.beniculturali.it/ASTS/Inventari/camcom.pdf, pp.20, 148, 207, 212, 217, 233, 240, 243, 244, 247, 250, 257, 344, 635, 658.  Not only Giovanni Antonio  di Demetrio was playing a role there, but also his brother , Basilio di Demetrio (the grandfather of Dimitrij X Dimitrievich), who, in 1905 was insisting that the Chamber has to acquire the  „Calepino Dictionary„, for seven languages, from the XVIIIth cent. (Tabo, Grazia -op.cit.,p. 244.)

His brother, Giovanni Antonio di Demetrio, in 1895 published something about financial laws : „Per istudio e riferta sul progetto di legge concernente le imposte personali dirette”, Trieste, 1895. About the Ekonomou (Economo) baronial family see Pietro Spirito Gli Economo di Trieste.

Being a wealthy and noble family, di Demetrios were able to finance a large mannoir for them in  1849 (see the cartographical file of Mme. Isabella Collavizza here (   Collavizza Isabella Palazzo di Demetrio Trieste)

Some pictures would be useful here:                            

This castle is situated on via Cesare Battisti 14, Triest, being now protected by the Superintendence of the historical buildings.   In the half of  the   XIXth c., the sister of Giovanni Antonio and of Basilio di Demetrio, Giuseppina, married with another nobleman of Greek origin: Anastasio Edler von Vardacca (see  Di Demetrio Lucinis Attems).

So di Demetrios were well inserted in the local Triestine establishment.

If Giovanni Antonio di Demetrio was trading with Romania since 1877, his son, Dr. Antonio di Demetrio was much more implicated in Romanian realities. Antonio di Demetrio was honorary Consul of the Romanian Kingdom between the World Wars (Corpo Consolare Trieste)     and after 1945 he had a crucial activity helping the Romanian refugees from the new communist paradise. The Romanians were escaping through Hungary (communist also) or through Yugoslavia ( the Titoist regime was communist too, but ‘unorthodox”) and much less through Bulgaria and Greece.

The Romanian Exile organized the CAROMAN (The Romanian Red Cross from Exile), patronised by H.M. the King, several National Councils from Exile, or former Royal Ministers who were able to escape before 1947 from Romania. The CAROMAN deputy for Triest was Antonio di Demetrio, who, together with his wife, took care personally about the Romanian refugees there.

In fact in  1949 he helped 581 refugees, in 1950: 105, in 1951: 101, in 1952: 234, in 1953: 198, in 1954: 100. He assisted them with money, food, vestments, papers and  documents,, juridical advises, news from and to Romania,  facilitating their emigration to other countries, he had to struggle against several diversions, and even a Romanian school was organized by him in Triest, in 1951!  He did several interventions at the A.M.G. (Allied Military Govt.) of Triest, and wrote a huge correspondence with the Romanian authorities in Exile. He was a true benefactor for those exiled Romanians, unfortunately fallen in oblivion today. And he even spoke Romanian!

Aurel Sergiu Marinescu (1922-2008) , a serious historian of the Romanian Exile, and a former political prisoner too, had warm terms to appreciate the help offered by Dr. Antonio di Demetrio ( Marinescu, Aurel Sergiu – „O contributie la istoria Exilului romanesc„, 10 vol., vol. VII, Bucharest, 2007, ed.Vremea, pp. 300, 386, 400-01, 410-11, 413-18, 422-23, 427-28, 440-448, 451-58, 472-80, 487-88, 491, is offering in the quoted pages a precise , documented, report about the activity of di  Demetrio). Antonio di Demetrio’s cousin, Demetrio IX Vasiljevich di Demetrio, had to do with the refugees in Italy, too.

Therefore, the Romanian Priory considers a duty of honour recording the memory of Dr. Antonio di Demetrio, benefactor of those Romanian who lost their country. And the heraldic allegiance to Habsburg Dynasty proves to be a very natural, normal, „canonical” one, once that the di Demetrios were Triestine, Austro-Hungarian nobles too.

Unfortunately we were not able yet to find other data about  di Demetrios from Triest, or about  the heirs of Antonio di Demetrio.

Sadly, the irregular life of Demetrio IX Vasilievich, and possible some troubles occured after the death of Dr. Antonio di Demetrio or his proximal parents, created deep problems to Dimitrij Maria di Demetrio, alias Dimitrij X Dimitrievich.


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