I am Sicilian-American, and surname is "Palazzolo." Anyway, I have always since childhood been attracted to subjects like knighthood, chivalry, crusading orders, idealistic spiritual warfare, military castes (e.g. the Aryo-Vedic Kshatriya
, originally of higher rank than the priests), etc.
Well, inevitably I discovered my own name is linked deeply intimately to the subject consuming my passion most. Eerie.
Palazzolo derives, in deep-deep-deep etymology, from "noble patrician manor", literally "palace" (in Latin "palatium" from the Palatin Hill, one of the famed 12 cities of Rome, sacred to Mars and mannerbund-type wolf-societies, where Augustus built his super-mansion). The basic idea is "palatial soldier."
The history of how Palatium gave birth to "Paladin", the Carolingian heroic Christian knight of right, is fascinating.
Firstly, I believe the history started with the late Roman army and its nobiliary elite shock troops of the Emperor. House-carls is similar in meaning. I mean hardcore bodyguard Praetorian types. Please correct me if I am wrong. These "shock troop royal-guards" were first in Rome, the Praetorian Guard of course, but Constantine, in his wars, dissolved the old system, re-formed his own personal elite imperial guard, and called them "Scholae Palatinae". I believe they constituted the most elite cross-trained soldiers and "special forces" of the time--again, correct me if I am wrong.
Later in history, the late Roman army developed units of high-status "Auxilia Palatini" shock troops, expanded units of forces not immediately enmeshed in the Emperor's service. Historians are unsure of the exact honorific-noble status of the Auxilia Palatini, and whether they resembled sort of irregular guerrillas or the finest units. Unresolved, except these Palatini definitely yet carried high military and hierarchical social rank.
(I imagine King Arthur, if historic, if he was "Dux Bellorum" or tribune or whatever, commanded such a unit of "irregular", "special forces" palatini "rangers"--probably Scythian-Sarmatian-Alanic mounted troops, hypothetically, see "From Scythia to Camelot
", I can recommend.)
Comes means in Roman history, military governor of exceptional commanding power, or special imperial representative, "companion".
Thus, in the late Roman military hierarchy, practically identical to nobiliary patricianship, a "Comes Palatinus" (Count of the Palace) rank developed, not so dissimilar from the Magister Militum ambiance, this rank developing bit by bit and eventually, as the special "viceroy" of the Caesar in governance, carrying high prestige and dignity. Not many held higher realistic authority than the Comes Palatinus in crepuscular Rome and Byzantium.
As time evolved, there was the Merovingian "comes palatii", high-order royal noble executioners of the dynastic kingly will, and then into the Carolingian era, Charlemagne the Catholic spearhead war-king, designated several of his highest functionaries and administrative officers as "Comes Palatini", regenerating the Roman meaning fully and definitively. No doubts as to the term's honorable signification could now be possible.
Thence, thrown around in different languages, from Latin to Germanic to French to English to French, etc., the word and concept "Paladin" connoting "noble Christian heroic knight of knights, champion of the right" arose. The epic saga of Roland, etc., so heavy in Christianized Germanic warrior-hierarchical values...
Later, in Germany, Hungary, Eastern Europe, etc., "Count-Palatinates" developed as semi-autonomous units basically controlled by feudal-type warlords. The equivalent name in Eastern European history is "voivode", the Slavic nobiliary station of the historical Vlad Tepes--Dracula the inspiration of Stoker, of the stock of the Draculae--brutal warlords of warlords, nominally under imperial oversight, but freely self-acting as Christendom's Eastern shield, thus given exceptional freedom to act--a situation ripe for misuse and tyrannical potentialities, as we learned with Dracula the Impaler and the "despotates".
Thus, the above is the summation of what I have learned so far about the personally totally interesting and mysterious and eerie, due to my own self-identity as a counter-modern "white knight" personality of ultraconservative-restorationist tendencies, discovering the meaning of my own name thus wise... My life-long identification with "Galahadean"-type holy Christian chivalry--combating modern degeneracy and Mafia oligarcho-cryptocracy, so much of me is inscrutably interlinked...
My name means late Roman or Byzantine "palatial-royal storm trooper/commando" in exotic terms. And I have always identified passionately in this way without even knowing these things...isn't that strange? Maybe "spiritual karma" exists, who knows, or traces in the blood-memory...
I know the Italian nobility was destroyed officially by the Socialist-Communist influence in Europe, except for the morally-ambiguous "Black (pontifical) Nobility", but I wonder now if I have some distant noble blood in me, whether Sauromatian, Ghibelline or native Roman-Sicilian or whatever... (Most every human being does, as tragic Darwinist law rules here on earth, and the existing population are merely offspring of warrior-despots of all types, no doubt...)
My genographic haplogroup paternally is G2a, and some genetic researchers link G2 in Europe to these very Arthurian legionary palatini-type proto-knights, possible Sauromatian transplanted shock-cavalry or Roman pre-chivalry.
The assassinated French King Louis (of the French Revolution) interesting carries my same exact haplogroup. Elsevier
I have NO idea what this could mean... Deep-deep shared Alan-type blood...? (Historians underestimate the penetration of medieval leadership strata by a micro-society of Alan-blooded military governors, who became genetically dominant in many noble European houses)... Who knows...?
(I am not having an egomaniac episode :P
-- I am only super-interested in history, and personal history moreover...)
I know Palazzolo is a relatively common name, and also a topographic name too, and could also mean, rather ignobly, medieval manorial servant possibly, as house-servant or butler or serf...? But I doubt it in my case -- my gut-instinct says no...
Interestingly, I do know my Sicilian great-grandfather was promoted to, uh...the American equivalent is "Captain" I believe (the highest field-position, where you actually can get shot easily, ha)...from "corporal"...on the field, in some Italian war--apparently such a thing was very, very rare; and I do have papers so moldy and ready to dissolve, I am afraid to touch, but seem like "certificates" granting him some sort of honor or recognition for this fact... I know this "proves" nothing, but is meaningful in my eyes, as soldierly nature is linked to patrician status historically and anthropologically...
Is there a shield of arms or crest for Palazzolo, in heraldry, I wonder...? The manifold linguistic and historical significance of the root word in history is quite real.
From the Palatine Hill mysteriously sacred to wolf mannerbunden of ancient Roman warriors of Mars (already at the deepest origins the warrior element is interestingly central), to ducal Palatines, the German medieval, semi-royally independent Pfalzgraf
(still some survive today), etc., to me, is just such an interesting, rich archeo-historic journey...
Lastly, I want to say, I am not normally so self-focused AT ALL -- the subject necessitates it this time -- and lastly, *I am no militarist* -- I am a passionate spiritually-educated "Galahadic" personality only, really. The less carnage in protecting justice, the better.