This study illuminates the process of writing history in Renaissance Sicily. While Italian historians have offered revisionist histories of Sicily in the Medieval period, the same cannot be said for the Sicilian Renaissance. The existing gap in our understanding of Renaissance historiography with regard to Sicily is the result of a much more expansive tradition that can be traced from Dante and Petrarch to later Italian national histories such as those of Francesco DeSanctis and Benedetto Croce, not to mention Jacob Burckhardt. Anglophone historiography of the Renaissance also reflects this trend of overlooking Sicilian historians of this period. We are left with an incomplete understanding of Sicilian history and culture. I offer a different picture of culture in Sicily during this period by examining how humanists of the time wrote Sicilian history and, as a result, constructed Sicilianità, a term I have chosen to discuss the construction of a unique Sicilian national identity. The work of the Dominican friar Tommaso Fazello (1498–1570) is particularly helpful in teasing out the broader pattern in Sicilian intellectual thought of a selective use of history, philosophy, and literature in order to construct Sicilianità.

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