Norman Golb

Oriental Institute, University of Chicago

If the voyager to southern Italy should forsake the usual tourist routes and make his way inland from Naples, he would eventually come to the rugged region known as the Basilicata; and if from the city of Potenza, which lies in its heartland, he should take a certain road to the northeast, through a region dotted with thew towers and castles of the Normannic conquerors of the 11th century, he would soon come to the ancient town of Oppido Lucano. There he might discover a narrow street with a sign at its head reading: Via Giovanni-Abdia il Normanno - Musicista Oppidano del Secolo Undicesimo (i.e., The Street of Johannes-Obadiah the Norman, Musician of Oppido of the Eleventh Century). A passerby might tell him that the name of the street is relatively recent, and that it was first dedicated at a special ceremony convened to honor this man in April of 1970.