The Montalto Family

The Montalto family are of Norman descent. The family archives date back to ancient Rome. Today the Montalto family holds the titles of Duke of Fragnito, Duke of Tocco, Prince of Lequile, Marquis of Pontelatrone, and Patrician of Naples. (See

Duke Massimo Montalto di Fragnito was Chamberlain to the Royal Court. Another Montalto ancestor was Governor of Sicily and the original Norman Palace, Palazzo Montalto, can still be seen in Siracusa.

Sant Andrea della Valle, Rome’s most theatrical basilica, which inspired the first act of the opera Tosca, was completed largely at the expense of Cardinal Montalto, nephew of Pope Sixtus (1520-1590), a family ancestor.

David Maude-Roxby-Montalto di Fragnito, the 13th Duke of Fragnito, is a world renowned artist craftsman. His work is held in some of the world’s most prestigious private collections and museums, including the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Please visit and Wikipedia for more information.

Patricia Montalto, Duchess of Fragnito, comes from a musical and artistic background, and studied piano under the world-famous Fanny Waterman.

Following a career in journalism, she now spends much of her time in India, working on social projects. She is actively involved in the Development Research & Action Group.

For over forty years, she has organised the many prestigious cultural and artistic events at the Palazzo, which has hosted collaborations with the Georg Solti Accademia, performances by acclaimed soloists such as Roderick Williams, literary events with the National Italian American Foundation (NIAF), and writers including Gore Vidal, Gay and Nan Talese, and Jay Parini, amongst many others.

The family continues into subsequent generations, and the grandchildren enjoy coming to Fragnito to explore the castle and all the fascinating historical sites in the area.