June 2022 Notiziario

Dante Alighieri of Denver header


On Friday, June10, Professor Steven Hughes returns to talk to us about Why Italian Switzerland?   And why it’s important in Italy’s history.  We will meet as usual at 7:30 p.m. in the Parish Hall of Mt. Carmel Church at 3549 Navajo Street, Denver.

By most metrics of national identity Italian Switzerland (specifically the canton of Ticino) should be part of Italy. Surrounded on three sides by Lombardy and Piedmont, it appears on a map as an odd Swiss appendage thrusting down into the Bel Paese almost to Milan.  Its language, culture, cuisine, and economics have long Italian roots, and during the unification movement of the nineteenth century it was a refuge for Italian nationalists, like Giuseppe Mazzini, and a font of subversive patriotic propaganda. Volunteers from Ticino even went South to fight for Italian freedom during the revolutions of 1848. Yet, when Italy finally became a country in 1861 and some patriots called for the Italian Swiss to join the new union, the Ticinesi steadfastly refused to leave the Swiss Confederation.  As this talk will demonstrate, understanding this apparent paradox is important not only for Swiss history but also for understanding the making of modern Italy.


Friends and family abounded on May 1 at the Mt. Vernon Canyon Club as the Dante Alighieri Society honored its Donne di Merito recipient, Alisa DiGiacomo, and its three scholarship winners.

Alisa with Susan

Alisa with Susan

Alisa DiGiacomo was recognized for her many significant and enduring contributions, not only in her profession but also in the promotion and continued support of the Italian culture in our community.

Scholarships 2022

Veronica, Pamela, Marjorie, John, Roberta, Brinna, and Ireland

The Giulio Marcantonio Memorial Scholarship was awarded to Ireland Rose Dunlap, who will be studying at the Lorenzo de Medici in Florence, Italy. The Dr. Frank J. & Mary J. Giardino Memorial Scholarship was awarded to Marjorie Moessbauer, who will study at ISA at Universita’ Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in Milan, Italy. The third scholarship was presented to Brianna Faughnan, who will also study at the Lorenzo de Medici in Florence, Italy. All three winners are students at the University of Denver.

Since its inception the Dante Alighieri Society of Denver has awarded over $300,000 in scholarships to worthy college students, who will study some aspect of Italian culture in Italy.



With the Awards Luncheon at the beginning and the Angela Papale recital in the middle, May was a busy month to say the least. We’re looking at a somewhat slower pace in the upcoming months, which is not to say there’s not much going on. Plans are well underway for Italian Heritage Month in October, a summer picnic in July, cultural programs in June, August, and September, a soup exchange in November and the Christmas party in December. In addition to all that activity, election of officers will be held at the November general meeting. Positions up for election are president, vice-president, secretary, and treasurer. A Nominating Committee has been identified and notice will be going out soon seeking nominations for these positions. If you have interest in running for any of these positions, please let the Committee know so your name can be put in nomination. Again, I’m always available for your questions or concerns so don’t hesitate to contact me. Grazie. John Giardino


The Dante Alighieri Society is currently offering the 10-week Spring session of Italian language classes, which began the week of March 28.  The Summer 2022 session of Italian language classes, beginning in June 2022, will be in-person language classes at 3549 Navajo Street, Denver 80211 in the parish office of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church.  Each class meets for 90 minutes, once a week, for 10 weeks.  Beginner and Intermediate classes will be offered.  The class schedule will be posted on the Society website in mid-May.  Classes are taught by talented bi-lingual instructors who have significant experience teaching Italian.  Cost is $115 for members and $145 for non-members.  New members are welcome to join the Dante Alighieri Society when they register for classes.  Please register early because classes do fill up.  For more information, please contact the Education Chair Suzanne Fasing at suzannefasing@yahoo.com  Information about the classes is also available on the web site:  https://dantealighieriofdenver.com/classes/language-classes/

The registration and payment deadline for the Summer session is June 13, 2022.


Beginner 1. Beginner 1 at this time is full. To be put on a wait list, email suzannefasing@yahoo.com. Mondays, 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm, beginning September 19, 2022 through November 28, 2022 (no class Nov. 21 of Thanksgiving week) (Brunetti).  In this class students with little or no knowledge of Italian will learn to communicate in simple everyday situations. Students will study the basic building blocks of the Italian language, including the alphabet, rules of pronunciation, basic syntax, and grammatical structures. Topics include subject pronouns, definite and indefinite articles, regular verbs in the present tense, and noun-adjective agreement.     Required Text: The New Italian Project 1a 


Beginner 2.  Thursdays, 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm, beginning September 22, 2022 through December 1, 2022 (no class on Thanksgiving, Nov. 24) (Brunetti).   In this class students will build upon their existing knowledge while incorporating new vocabulary and grammatical structures through conversation, listening, reading and writing activities. Topics include irregular and modal verbs in the present tense, articulated prepositions, and possessive adjectives.  Required Text: The New Italian Project 1a

Beginner 3. Beginner 3 at this time is full. Wednesdays, 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm, beginning September 21, 2022 through November 30, 2022 (no class on Nov. 23, Thanksgiving eve) (Brunetti).  In this class, students will build upon their prior studies through listening, reading and writing activities. Topics include past and future verb tenses.  Emphasis will be placed on everyday conversational situations using grammar and vocabulary from the textbook.   Required Text: The New Italian Project 1a


Intermediate 1.  Wednesdays, 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm, beginning September 21, 2022 through November 30, 2022 (no class on Nov. 23, Thanksgiving eve) (Brunetti).  In this class students will build upon their prior studies through listening, reading and writing activities. Topics include past verb tenses and possessive pronouns.

Required Texts: The New Italian Project 1a And  Required Text: The New Italian Project 1b


Advanced 1.  Thursdays, 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm, beginning September 22, 2022 through December 1, 2022 (no class on Nov. 24, Thanksgiving) (Brunetti).  In this class students will continue to expand their vocabulary and understanding of more advanced grammatical concepts through listening activities, readings, videos, and conversation.  The class will be conducted primarily in Italian and topics will include double object pronouns, relative pronouns and the gerund.
Required Text:  The Italian Project 2a

AUGURI DI BUON COMPLEANNO   We wish our members a Buon Compleanno during their birthday month.


Codey Fredenhagen         June 3
Antigone Vigil                   June 3
Tammy Sneed                   June 6
Joanne Valvano                June 6
John Giardino                  June 11
Marie Vine                       June 12
Leah Becton                     June 13
Debra D’Adamio              June 19
Molly Grasso                    June 21
Mark Tylutki                     June 23
Laura Horesh                   June 27


We want to include more members in this column, so please send a quick email, with your birthday month and day, to Dante Society board member Suzanne Fasing, at suzannefasing@yahoo.com      Grazie!


Mese del cuore                                      Month of the heart

Mese del cuore                                                 Month of the heart
Sono Giugno, a tutti quanti                              I am June, to everyone
porto doni consolanti,                                      I bring comforting gifts,
promozioni agli studenti                                  advancements to students
anche a quelli inconcludenti,                           even to unsuccessful ones.
Porto frutti profumati                                       I bring scented fruits
con i prezzi maggiorati                                    with increased prices.


Hospitality Chairperson seeking volunteers:

Camilla Marcantonio has agreed to serve as Hospitality Chairperson for our Society and will be recruiting members to help with refreshments at our monthly cultural meetings.  If you are willing to contribute to our social hour following the cultural program by bringing a dessert to share, please email Camilla at:  giulio1937@msn.com


On Sunday, May 15, Italian Soprano Angela Papale and Maestro Fabio Marra performed for members and guests of the Denver and Pueblo Dante Alighieri Societies in an operatic tribute to Renata Tebaldi, celebrating the life of one of the great protagonists of Italian melodrama.  The Colorado recital is part of their international tour with performances in Paris, Hamburg, Madrid, Detroit and Boston and will continue throughout 2022 in other world capitals.



Sunday, July 24 – Annual picnic

Wednesday, August 10 – Rockies Baseball Game.  The Dante Alighieri Society is participating in Italian-American Baseball Foundation Heritage Night at Coors Field. There are special ticket prices so please see details below and in  attached flyer.

Important Notice about the Italian American Night at the Rockies

The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver is co-sponsoring an Italian American Night at the Rockies with five other organizations. It is a group effort and a fundraiser for our respective organizations. Tickets can only be purchased through the Rockies; however, the DAS needs to track the number of tickets it sells. We want to be sure to have an accurate count of number tickets sold when the game is over. When you buy your tickets, please phone, text or email Susan Gurule with your name and the number of tickets you purchased. Susan's phone number is:   720-484-1014 and her email is susangurule@msn.com.



Si osservano senza guardarli.  Cosa sono?  We observe them without looking at them.  What are they?

La risposta a pagina quattro - (answer on page  four)


TIPS ON ITALY   By Tonya Clement.

One of the best methods I have found for learning the Italian language is to correspond with friends in Italy.  The rule is they must write me in Italian and I write them in English.  This forces us both to practice our language skills. Over the years I am noticing my friends are utilizing many different ways to say “Thank You” in Italian.  This got me thinking that this would make a good topic for our Notiziario.

I figured with Summer fast approaching, many Dante Alighieri Society members may be going to Italy to visit.  There will certainly also be ample opportunity to practice the many ways to say thank you.  Here is my short list.

Grazie = This covers almost every situation and is easy to remember.  You do not need to worry about being formal or informal.

Grazie Mille = Many people mistakenly think they are saying thanks a million…..but “mille” means a thousand.  You are really just saying a thousand thanks.


Molte Grazie = many thanks!

Grazie di Cuore = This is my favorite and it really express genuine gratitude with all of one’s heart.

Grazie Ancora = Ideal for when you are thanking someone for the second time as it means thank you again.

Grazie Infinite = Is an expression to show infinite thanks.

Grazie di Tutto = When you want to thank someone for doing multiple good deeds.  You are in essence saying thank you for everything.

Grazie Tanto = You may want to be careful with this one as it is often used to express sarcasm as in thanks a lot.  It is easy to determine the meaning if you listen carefully to the tone.

La (ti) Ringrazio Tanto = The more proper way to say thank you so much. Formal (familiar).

Italians are not only very expressive but they are very grateful people.  It will delight them to hear you express your gratitude with a little more than just grazie.  These are phrases that you can practice multiple times each day.



Why is Italy called Italy.  Readers who know their history will be aware that modern-  day Italy only came into  being in the 19th century with the country’s gradual unification (known in Italy as the Risorgimento) between 1848 and 1871, thanks to a series of successful military campaigns led by General Giuseppe Garibaldi.

But the name Italia – referring to different parts of the peninsula at different points in history – has been in use for several thousand years.

In his text ‘On Italy’ the Greek historian Antiochus of Syracuse, writing in around 420 BC, reportedly identified Italia as the southern part of modern-day Calabria – the toe of Italy’s boot.

Most of Antiochus’ works are lost to us today, but the Greek historian Dionysius of Halicarnassus, writing several hundred years later in the early first century AD, quotes parts of them in his text ‘Roman Antiquities‘.

Here Antiochus recounts the legend that sixteen generations before the Trojan war, the region we now know as Calabria was inhabited by the Enotri or the Oenotrians. The Enotri had a king named Italus, and subsequently changed their name to the Itali.

2022 Calendar


November 11



October – Italian Heritage Month
See flier for many events.



Fall term began – September 19                           

Answer to Indovinello” – I dieci comandamenti - (The ten commandments)


May Events