Book/Printed Material Image 4 of [Nicknames and their Sources--Italy]

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FORM C Text of Interview (Unedited)



ADDRESS 509 E. 79th St., Apt. 21, New York City

DATE October 17, 1938


This is really happen to an uncle of mine — Uncle Vincent, of which I am christened; he went from our little village (Sara Cena, Italy, 4,000 inhabitants) in the south of Italy, to America and stayed there five or six years, then he came back to Italy. This was some years ago; then when the people there living in the village welcomed back their neighbor who have been over in U.S., they were very friendly and curious and asking him about all that he had seen and done in his travels and in America. Naturally, in America they are very interested.

My Uncle had learned a slang of America: “Shut up!” And he said this word whenever he was talking of his experience, meaning you see, to impress with his new learning of the U.S. language, all his friends. He kept saying this word so much, and not ever what it meant, and his friends heard him, and soon they were calling him by that word, “Shut up.” That is the way is often done in Italy, a man called by not his name, but other name of which he reminds by his speech, or something he is doing, or such like that...see? So my Uncle Vincent become “Shut up” and went after that in his town by that name.


There was another man I am knowing in Italy; he they call “Golden Chain”. For why they call him that, “Golden Chain”? Because when coming from a big town in North, and after many years away, coming back to his village there, he have got wealthy and have brought a gold watch and chain hanging across his middle of his

About this Item

[Nicknames and their Sources--Italy]
Contributor Names
Swenson, May (Interviewer)
D' Atr, Vincent Violai (Interviewee)
Created / Published
New York City, New York
Subject Headings
-  Songs
-  Colloquial language
-  Italians
-  Poetry
-  Narratives
-  United States -- New York -- New York City
Call Number/Physical Location
series: Folklore Project, Life Histories, 1936-39
MSS55715: BOX A724
Source Collection
U.S. Work Projects Administration, Federal Writers' Project
Manuscript Division
Online Format
online text

Rights & Access

The Library of Congress is not aware of any copyright in the documents in this collection. As far as is known, the documents were written by U.S. Government employees. Generally speaking, works created by U.S. Government employees are not eligible for copyright protection in the United States, although they may be under copyright in some foreign countries. The persons interviewed or whose words were transcribed were generally not employees of the U.S. Government. Privacy and publicity rights may apply.

Suggested credit line: Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, WPA Federal Writers' Project Collection.

The introduction was written by Ann Banks © 1980 and produced by Joanne B. Freeman. The sound recordings were produced by Joan Murphy Stack and engineered by Rob Attinello. The actors who read the manuscripts were Clement Cottingham, Billie Durand, George A. Jackson, Jr., Margaret Root, Edward S. Stout, and Edna Jeweline White.

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For more on these and related topics, consult the following books:

Chernoff, George and Hershel Sarbin. Photography and the Law, NY: AMPHOTO, 1971. Library of Congress call number: KF2042.P45C44 1971.

Schultz, John and Barbara Schultz. Picture Research: A Practical Guide, NY: Van Nostrand, 1991. Library of Congress call number: TR147.S38 1991.

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Swenson, May, and Vincent Violai D' Atr. Nicknames and their Sources--Italy. New York City, New York, 1938. Pdf.

APA citation style:

Swenson, M. & D' Atr, V. V. (1938) Nicknames and their Sources--Italy. New York City, New York. [Pdf] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Swenson, May, and Vincent Violai D' Atr. Nicknames and their Sources--Italy. New York City, New York, 1938. Pdf. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.