I am so shocked! I am reading a very interesting book which title is “L’ italiano e’ bello” (Italian is nice) by Mariangela Galatea Vaglio and throughout the lecture which explains a lot of Italian history, culture and of course language, I read this:
“La pizza, per esempio, molto probabilmente e’ un lascito dei Longobardi. L’etimologia e’ incerta e anche i linguisti non si sentono sicuri, ma potrebbe aver avuto origine da bizzo/a, pezzo di pane, morso (tedesco bissen). La parola, che indicava allora una focaccia bianca, si diffonde a partire dai domini longobardi del Sud, anche se e’ solo nell’Ottocento, con l’invenzione della pizza margherita, cosi’ chiamata per omaggiare la regina Margherita di Savoia consorte di Umberto I, che la pizza diverra’ famosa e mangiata in tutto il mondo. Non si puo’ escludere insomma che nel gran caos del Medioevo dei barbari tedeschi abbiano inventato il piu’ mediterraneo dei nostri piatti.”
Translation (as I didn’t find the original English one, I propose mine):
“For example it is very probable that the Pizza is a bequest from the Lombardic. The etimology is uncertain and also the linguists are unsure about it, but it could have had origin from bizzo/a, piece of bread, bite (german: bissen). The word, which indicated before a white focaccia, spreads with Lombardic supremacies of the South, even if it is just in 1800, with the invention of pizza margherita, so called to homage the Queen Margherita of Savoia wife of Umberto the First, that the pizza will be popular and eaten all over the world. We cannot exclude in few words that in the big caos of the Middle Ages the german barbarians could have invented the most mediterannean dish we have.”
I would like to underline the “it is very probable” and “the linguists are unsure about it” sentences to deny all this. I mean I hope it is not true! But I tried to search for the real pizza’s origin and here’s what I found:
On Wonderopolis page they talk about the ancient Greeks and Romans period and about an italian man from Napoli who baked the first pizza, please check: https://wonderopolis.org/wonder/who-invented-pizza
On Pizzafacts page they talk about several first users of pizza around the 1st century BC; they also talk about 3000 years old flattened breads in Sicily and about the Roman Empire, especially in the area of Naples and Pompei where they baked the white focaccia, but there is no name of the inventor/s, please check: http://www.pizzafacts.net/pizza-history/history-of-pizza/
The page indipendent.co.uk talks about the origins of pizza from Lazio in 997 AD, where they baked 12 pizzas for Christmas Eve, please check: https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/news/pizza-did-not-originate-in-naples-claims-food-historian-10036998.html
And there are many more links which more or less say the same…
So, who is right? Which source is true? What I think is that Italians appropriated pizza’s origins at the right moment and this amazing dish has been spread all over the world, was that simply luck? What do you think? Or from the very first years of the Roman Empire we could invent such flat bread, even if we know that in Spain (Valencia, Balears Isles) they have Coca or in Greece Pita, and so on… and if Mariangela is right?
Is Pizza Lombardic?