Title in succession: 9th
Date created: 1716
Grant by: Grandmaster Jean Paul Lascaris de
Granted To: Dr. Gio Pio De Piro
Rep: De Piro D'Amico Inguanez
Remainder to: his descendants in perpetuity each
the right to nominate a successor; in default of nomination
to the first
born son and in the absence of male issue, to the first born
Present Holder: Nicholas de Piro
Extinct Magisterial Titles: Baron of
Other related titles: De Piro
Antonio Felicissimo de Piro,(1806)
1st Baroncino di Budaq and Marchesino de Piro.
The fief of Budaq (originally Budacco) had been granted or
sold numerous times in its interesting history as a fief.
The Barba family were granted this fief in 1397, following the
Gatto family in 1398, Aulesa also in 1398, following the
Inguanez in 1408, the Cilia family in 1644, the Fiteni’s in
1646, following the Passalaqua in 1646.
Francesco Cilia had purchased the fief of Budaq from Baron
Antonio Inguanez on 16th May 1590. For some reason neither
father or son ever paid homage to the Grand Master as an
acknowledgement of Fealty and were consequently never styled
Baron. Niccolo was in danger of having his fief confiscated by
the order. However he successfully petitioned the Grand Master
to be formally recognised as the Baron di Budaq. Cilia died in
1646, leaving no successor, where upon the fief devolved to
the Order to be regranted a few months later.
The first Protomedico to be ennobled was Niccolo Cilia, who in
1633 had been appointed to this office. He probably also
awarded the 'Croce d'Oro' on his appointment. Cilia, however
had been aware that he possessed the fief of Budach. His
father , Francesco, had bought the lands from Baron Antonio
Inguanez for the sum of 2280 onze. The sale had been made on
the 16 May 1590, and was registered in the acts of Notary
Enrico Zarb. When the Protomedico realised that he held feudal
territory he wanted to be invested in order to acquire the
title and hold a legitimate claim for his fief. Grand Master
Lascaris acceded to Cilia's request and concluded a
transaction with his protomedico, but only over a part of the
fief. On the 18 February 1644, the council of the Order had
given the Grand Master permission of the said transaction.
After eight days, Cilia was created Baron di Budaq, only two
years before his death in 1646. There is no evidence that
Cilia had been ennobled because of service to the Order, but
his appointment as Protomedico probably had considerable
influence in his investiture as Baron, since Lascaris could
have claimed this fief in virtue of Cilia's omission to pay
This time the fief, went to Cesare Passalacqua , to his
daughter and her husband Silvestro Fiteni.
Silvestro Fiteni was Capitano della Verga 1644-52, and created
a Knight of the Order of St John in 1656.
Fiteni left no legitimate heir and so the title became extinct
with his death.
The Barony was regranted to Gio Pio de Piro and his wife Anna
Gourgion by the Grand Master Perollos on 23rd of April 1716,
with the required tribute of two muskets on St. Barbara.
The Barony de Budaq was given to the de Piro's and his
legitimate heirs, males and females, procreatis vel
The Baron de Piro could not attend his first Investiture since
he was in Sicily and his father paid homage instead. Only
three years after de Piro was ennobled he neglected to
present his two muskets-to grave concern of his father.
Not only Gio Pio's successors was ever invested, but their
rights to the Barony was never queried. It may be argued
that when a nobleman did not pay homage and present tribute
he was in breach of the original oath, which was similar to
that taken, in 1644, by the feudatory of Budach, who
" I Niccolo Cilia swear and promise fidelity, reverence and
observance to your Highness and to Your Holy Religion,
recognising you as the true and rightful Lords of the fief of
Budach which you and your Holy Convent have honoured me with
and to present every year at Easter of the Resurrection a
bunch of Roses as rightful recognition in the said fief "
(Reference: John Monalto., "The Nobles of Malta 1530-1800"
Midsea Books Ltd, Malta 1979.,pp35)
The de Piro family hold this fief to this day.
Note of Interest -
The remainder of the Barony to the de Piro family, stated “
His descendants in perpetuity , each holder of the title
having the right to nominate a successor, in default of
nomination to the first born male descendant and in absence of
male issue, to the first born female descendant. Members of
the clergy are precluded from succession by primogeniture”.
Wealth therefore becomes an influencing factor in the choice
of a prospective 'Secreto'. The fourteen thousand scudi which
Baron Gio Pio de Piro paid out during 1720-21 in his official
capacity as Zondadari's administration was less than the
private income for the same period of the de Piro-Gourgion
The only two sons of Marquis Vincenzo de Piro to marry,
disregarded the wish of their parents and married partners of
their own choosing. The eldest Antonio, married Teresa de Re,
a person of his own 'nationality but not of equal rank', from
whom-it was rumoured, had an illegitmate child. This enraged
his father who not only disinherited him, but also his
innocent descendants. Five years later, in 1795 Antonio left
with his family to live in Rome. The second son, Giuseppe, was
nominated , within the space of three years, the future heir
to the lucrative Gourgion and the de Piro entails. Rather
surprisingly he was not disinherited in spite of the fact that
he married Generosa Borg, below his rank.
The title passed from father to son, until the 4th holder,
where it was succeeded by his sister, who died in 1877, and
nominated her cousin Mgr. Don Salvatore Grech-Delicata to
succeed her. But the Court of Appeal overruled this decision
in favour of Guiseppe de Piro-Gourgion, the holder of the
Though , the senior branch of the de Piro’s were excluded from
succession due to Vincenzo de Piro being born outside of
wedlock to the 3rd Baron and his wife Teresa della Re.
On 5th December 1807, in a lengthy judgment, the Courts of
Malta upheld the primogenital and fede-commessary right due to
Vincenzo and his descendants as members of the de Piro family.
Just recently, a descendant of Vincenzo de Piro, claimed the
Spanish Title of Marquisate di San Vincente en Castilla, (
Marquis Anthony Buttiegieg de Piro ).
Today, the Junior branch still carried the titles of Baron di
Budaq and Marquis de Piro (Maltese recognised title), with
Nicholas de Piro D’Amico-Inguanez, as the 8th Marquis de Piro,
and 9th Baron di Budaq, (See de Piro for history).
Short version of the family tree of the Barons de Budaq
Jerome de Piro D'Amico Inguanez, (1914-96) 8th Baron di Budaq,
7th Marquis de Piro, married 1938 to Phyllis Cassar
1. Nicholas de Piro D'Amico Inguanez (1941- , 9th Baron di
Budaq, 8th Marquis de Piro, married 1970 to Frances Wilson
1.1 Cosmo de Piro D'Amico Inguanez (1971-, Marchesino de Piro,
married with issue
1.2. Clement de Piro D'Amico Inguanez (1972- , Baroncino di
1.3. Anton de Piro D'Amico Inguanez (1985-
1.4. Mary Louisa de Piro D'Amico Inguanez (1974-
2. Rosemary de Piro D'Amico Inguanez (1943-, married Dr John
O'Connell M.R.C.P, with issue
3. Mary Theresa de Piro D'Amico Inguanez (1946-, married Simon
Bailey, with issue
4. Mary Elisabeth de Piro D'Amico Inguanez (1950-, married
Ralph Bianchi, with issue
5. Mary Margaret de Piro D'Amico Inguanez (1951-, married
Architect Paul Bianchi B.E., A.&C.E. with issue.
A full account of genealogy is herewith:
A genealogical account of the Marquis's de Piro
Vincenzo de Piro, 2nd Baron di Budaq, 2nd Marquis di Castilla
(de Piro), died 1799., married 1757 to Maria Teresa dei Baroni
1. Antonio de Piro, 3rd Baron di Budaq, 3rd Marquis di
Castilla (1758-1806), married 1790 to Teresa della Re.
1.1. Vincenzo de Piro (1785-1840), married 1810 to Loreta
1.1.1. Guiseppe de Piro, married 1845 to Maria Antonia Mizzi
22.214.171.124. Antonio de Piro, married firstly to Louisa Borg, with
issue, Married secondy to Florence Cowley, with further issue.
126.96.36.199. Fortunato de Piro, married 1893 to Ersilea Leone
188.8.131.52.1. Joseph de Piro, married 1930 to Antonia Caruana
Dingli dei Marchesi del Fiddien, and dsp.
184.108.40.206.2. Jane de Piro, married 1928 to Joseph Buttigieg
220.127.116.11.2.1. Anthony Buttigieg de Piro, Marquis Buttigieg de
Piro, "Marquis di Castillo" (1932- , married 1959 to Alice
18.104.22.168.2.2. Capt Joseph dei Marchese Buttigieg de Piro (1934-
, married 1969 to Corinne Eminyan
22.214.171.124.2.2.1. David dei Marchese Buttigieg de Piro (1974-
126.96.36.199.2.2.2. Victoria dei Marchese Buttigieg de Piro (1971-
188.8.131.52.2.3. Cecil dei Marchese Buttigieg de Piro (1936-
184.108.40.206.3. Victoria de Piro, married Paul Fenech Gasan, with
220.127.116.11. Loreto de Piro, married Annette Mizzi, with issue.
1.1.2. Antonia de Piro, married to Gio Batta Mamo Mompalao,
1.2. Sir Giuseppe Maria de Piro C.M.G., (1794-1870), 4th Baron
di Budaq, married Antonia Moscati Gatto, 3rd Baroness di
Benwarrad, and dsp.
1.3. Francesca de Piro (died 1877), 5th Baroness di Budaq
2. Giuseppe de Piro Gourgion, C.M.G (died 1852), married 1810
to Gaetana Borg Madiona
2.1. Adriano de Piro Gourgion (1817-66) Styled Marquis de
2.2. Dr Carmelo dei Marchese de Piro-Gourgion, married 1844 to
Gerolama dei Baroni Sceberras d'Amico-Inguanez
2.2.1. Guiseppe de Piro-Gourgion (c 1845-1916), 6th Barone di
2.2.2. Alessandro de Piro-Gourgion (c 1849-98), married 1868
to Ursola Aguis-Caruana
18.104.22.168. Dr Carmelo de Piro, MD. (c 1871-1912), married 1908
to Dolores Dyer-Lister
22.214.171.124.1. Maria Pilar de Piro (c 1911-44), married Alexander
Apap-Bologna dei Marchese di Gnien is Sultan, with issue
126.96.36.199. Maria Teresa de Piro (c 1869-1920), married 1899 to
Paolo Apap Bologna, 5th Marchese di Gnien is Sultan
188.8.131.52. Rev Santo de Piro (c 1873-1929) dunm.
184.108.40.206. Igino de Piro d'Amico Inguanez (c 1874-1942), 7th
Baron di Budaq, married Nicolina Apap Bologna
220.127.116.11.1. Jerome de Piro d'Amcio Inguanez (c 1914-9?), 8th
Baron di Budaq, 7th Marquis de Piro , married 1938 to
18.104.22.168.1.1. Nicholas de Piro d'Amico Inguanez (c 1941- , 9th
Baron di Budaq, 8th Marquia de Piro , married 1970 to Frances
22.214.171.124.1.1.1. Cosimo de Piro d'Amico Inguanez (c 1971-,
Marchesino de Piro
126.96.36.199.1.1.2. Clement de Piro d'Amcio Inguanez (c 1972-,
Baroncino di Budaq
188.8.131.52.1.1.3. Anton de Piro (c 1985-
184.108.40.206.1.1.4. Mary Louise de Piro (c 1974-
220.127.116.11.1.2. Madeleine de Piro (c 1943-., married 1974 to Dr
18.104.22.168.1.2.1. Thomas O'Connell (c 1975-
22.214.171.124.1.2.2. James O'Connell (c 1976-
126.96.36.199.1.2.3. Victoria O'Conell (c1978-
188.8.131.52.1.3. Mary Therese de Piro (c 1946-, married 1974 Simon
184.108.40.206.1.3.1. Sebastian Bailey (c 1977-
220.127.116.11.1.3.2. Paul Bailey (c 1977-
18.104.22.168.1.4. Mary Elizabeth de Piro (c 1950-, married 1977 to
22.214.171.124.1.4.1. Mark Bianchi (c 1980-
126.96.36.199.1.4.2. Guilia Bianchi (c 1978-
188.8.131.52.1.4.3. Philippa Bianchi (c 1982-
184.108.40.206.1.5. Mary Margaret de Piro (c 1951-, married Paul
220.127.116.11.1.5.1. Alexandra Bianchi (c 1982-
18.104.22.168.1.5.2. Catherine Bianchi (c 1979-
22.214.171.124.2. Marie de Piro (c 1902-., married Niclino Trapani
Galea Feriol, 9th Baron di San Marciano
126.96.36.199.3. Cecilia de Piro (c 1904-, married firstly 1924 to
Count Nazzareno Zimmermann Barbaro, 5th Count von Zimmermann,
married secondly to Professor John Pick.
188.8.131.52.4. Monica de Piro (c 1909- ), married Col.John Toole
184.108.40.206. Alberto de Piro (c 1877-99) dunm
220.127.116.11. Mgr Alberto de Piro (c 1877-1933) dunm.
18.104.22.168. Maria de Piro (c 1872-1907), married Dr Alfredo
22.214.171.124. Dr Guido de Piro (c 1879-., married Betta Capone....
126.96.36.199. Gio Pio de Piro (c 1881-..., married Emma
188.8.131.52.1. Dr Alessandro de Piro Gourgion LLD (C 1917-
2.3. Francesco Saverio de Piro, C.M.G (1824-94), 4th Marquis
di Castillo, married 1856 to Adelaide dei Marchese Cassar
2.3.1. Guiseppe Lorenzo de Piro, C.M.G, (1858-1911), 5th
Marquis di Castillo, married 1891 to Georgina Galea-Naudi
184.108.40.206. Adelina de Piro (1892-1962), 6th Marchioness di
Castillo, married to Kenneth MacPherson, dsp.
(IF THERE ARE ANY UPDATES TO ANY TREES, PLEASE SEND AN EMAIL
TO 'firstname.lastname@example.org' stating site you seen the
genealogical tree and updates.)
References: 1) Gauci,C.A.," The Genealogy and Heraldry of the
Noble Families of Malta", Gulf Publishing Ltd, Malta, 1981.
2) Gauci,C.A.," The Genealogy and Heraldry of the Noble
Families of Malta, Volume Two", Publishers Enterprises Group
(PEG) Ltd, 1992.
3) Gauci,C.A and Mallet, P.,"The Palaeologos Family- A
Genealogical Review" ,Publishers Enterprises Group (PEG) Ltd,
4) Gauci, C.A.," A Guide to the Maltese Nobility", Publishers
Enterprise Group (PEG) Ltd, Malta, 1986.
5) Montalto, J., "The Nobles of Malta-1530-1800", Midsea Books
Ltd, Malta, 1980.
6) De Piro, N., "Casa Rocco Piccola", The Conde' Nast
Publications 1999.' Http://www.vol.net.mt/casarocca '
7) Giles Ash, S., "The Nobility of Malta", Publishers
Enterprises Group (PEG) Ltd, 1988.
8) Said Vassallo, C.M., Unpublished research papers.
9) Said Vassallo, C.M., Maltagenealogy.com Research site a
member of the 'Triple Alliance Site- Maltese Nobiliy'.