May 142009

Alexander Rossolimo wrote: “In addition to my work in private equity, due diligence and security, I have been busy writing my memoirs. While researching my family genealogy, I discovered interesting information about my ancestors.
I previously knew that some of my forebears can be traced back to the island of Cephalonia, off the west coast of Greece, as far back as 13th century, where the Rossolimo clan owned and controlled vast tracks of land. The startling information I uncovered is that this clan are the descendants of Hughes de Sully, baron and “officer general” from Normandy, in the service of Charles d’Anjou, king of Naples. Hughes commanded the Neapolitan army, which King Charles sent to help the Nicephore empire against the Byzantine emperor Michel Paléologue. In 1281, Hughes was taken prisoner by the Byzantines and imprisoned in Constantinople. Because of his red hair, Hughes de Sully was generally called “the red de Sully”, which in Greek became “Ros Solimo”. From this, the Greeks named his descendants “Rossolimo”. (The source of this genealogical information is the three-volume “Livre d’or de la noblesse ionienne” by Eugène Rizo-Rangabé, Paris 1926).”

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