Professor Paolo Laurana
Professor Paolo Laurana (pah-OH-loh lahew-RAH-nah), a middle-aged teacher of Italian literature and history. He is a resident of a small Sicilian village, unnamed in the story. When two prominent citizens of the town are murdered mysteriously, Laurana takes up the investigation on his own. A scholar and a longtime bachelor, he is attracted to Signora Roscio, the widow of one of the murdered men. He pursues clues that lead him to Palermo, where he learns that Dr. Roscio was about to reveal a scandal about a prominent citizen of the region. Laurana, a bit timid but curious, pursues the clues until he falls victim to the murderer of the two men.
Dean Rosello, the dean of the church of Sant’Anna in the town, a scrupulous churchman who is the uncle of the murdered Dr. Roscio’s widow, Luisa. Luisa was reared in Dean Rosello’s house, as was his nephew Rosello, who is now a lawyer. It is in the dean’s sacristy that Laurana sees the edition of the newspaper L’osservatore Romano containing the word Unicuique and confirms his suspicions that the death threat sent to the pharmacist, the murdered Manno, was cut from this paper. Rosello, a down-to-earth clergyman beloved by his parish, dislikes his nephew the lawyer, whom he considers unscrupulous.
Rosello, a lawyer, the...
(The entire section is 536 words.)