Artom

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ARTOM

ARTOM , Italian family originating from *Asti, Piedmont. The origin of the name is unknown but, like the rest of the Asti community, the family probably came from France. Various members of the family have achieved distinction, especially in politics, science, and literature. isaac (1829–1900) was a diplomat and writer. During the revolt against Austria in 1848, he fought in the students' battalion. On leaving the university, he joined the Foreign Office and in 1858 became private secretary to Count Cavour, who defended him against clerical opposition. After Cavour's death he was appointed minister plenipotentiary to Denmark (1862). He represented Italy during the 1866 peace negotiations with Austria and on the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian War was sent on a diplomatic mission to Vienna. Undersecretary of state for foreign affairs from 1870 to 1876, in 1877 he was elected to the senate of the kingdom, becoming the first Jewish member. He wrote several odes and poems and also published political, economic, and historical works. Isaac's grandson alessandro (1867–1927) was a physicist, specializing in radiotelegraphy. He invented the Artom system of telegraphy, and also made discoveries in dielectrics and meteorology. Alessandro was scientific advisor to the Italian navy, and was posthumously awarded the title of baron. A monument in his memory was erected in Asti. benjamin (1835–79), a rabbi, was born in Asti. After occupying rabbinical posts in Italy he became haham of the Sephardi community in London (1866), where he was especially active in education. An eloquent preacher in English, he published a collection of sermons (1873) and also wrote odes and prayers in Hebrew and poems in Italian. ernest (1869–1935), diplomat and historian, was the nephew of Isaac. As a member of parliament, he supported a national expansionist policy, founding the Italian Colonial Institute in 1909 and inspiring the Italian Libyan campaign of 1911–12. In 1919 he was made a senator. Ernest published many historical studies on the Risorgimento and a monograph on Isaac, L'opera politica del Senatore I. Artom (1906). camillo (b. 1886), a composer, was author of several musical works including the prize-winning Variazioni sinfoniche. His brother eugenio (b. 1896), attorney and author, rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel in World War i. In 1926 he was appointed attorney to the Supreme Court. An anti-Fascist liberal, he held important public positions (1943–46). In 1946 he became professor of history at Florence University and published several historical and political works. emanuele (1915–1944) was the author of an unfinished history of the Jews in Italy, published posthumously in Rassegna Mensile di Israel (vols. 15 and 16). He openly expressed anti-assimilationist views during the rise of the Fascists and later founded a resistance group (1943) but was captured and tortured by the Germans. His diary Diari, gennaio 1940–febbraio 1944 (1966) is of special interest. Other important members of this family were the biologist Cesare *Artom and the scholar Elia Samuele *Artom.

bibliography:

Milano, Bibliotheca, index; Milano, Italia, index; Roth, Italy, index; G. Bedarida, Ebrei d'Italia (1950); E. Artom, Tre vite dell'ultimo '800 alla metà del '900: studi e memorie di Emilio, Emanuele, Ennio Artom (1954), includes lists of works.