Giuseppe Pitrè

Giuseppe Pitrè was an Italian physician, writer, ethnologist and collector of fairy tales. He lived in Palermo from 1841 to 1916. After completing his medical studies in 1865, in addition to his profession he invested time into literary pursuits. While a traveling doctor, after visiting patients, he would write down the stories that they told him. He was particularly interested in Sicilian folklore and the Sicilian dialect. From 1871 to 1913 he wrote his most significant work, consisting of 25 volumes: the Library of Sicilian Folk Traditions (Biblioteca delle tradizioni popolari siciliane). In Palermo the scholar founded the Museo Etnografico Siciliano Giuseppe Pitrè in 1909. Today one of the world’s most important awards for ethnologists is the “Premio Pitrè”, named after him.