Associate Professor Cornelia (Nelia) Saxby of Italian Studies has been awarded the Cavaliere nell'Ordine della Stella Solidarieta Italiana, the Order of the Star of Italian Solidarity. The star is awarded to Italians and non-Italians for their support and contribution to Italian culture. The Italian embassy in South Africa made the nomination. Saxby's mother was Greek and her father Italian, but she grew up in Kenya and Zimbabwe. Her eclectic origins may explain her passion for philology, which is the study of the grammar, rhetoric, history, literary interpretation and critical traditions of a given language. Saxby is the author of three books, including her crowning glory, the 1997 Rime di Francesco Palmario di Ancona, the richest collection of verse to have been composed in honour of Sigismond Malatesta and his mistress. "But my greatest achievement was keeping Italian going at UCT, due to the consistent funding by the Italian government," she says.
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