SS "Wilcannia" 1888
Fawcett coat of arms


Frederick Robert Diacono 1854—1898

When Frederick was born in 1854 it was a time when England had a unique relationship with Egypt, much of it dating back to the pre–construction of the Suez Canal which opened in 1869. This, combined with the British occupation of Malta, allowed the Diacono family to consider themselves Anglo/Maltese thus they Anglicised their Christian names , carried British Passports and their Births, Deaths and Marriages were recorded with the British Consulate of the time in the city where they lived. Diacono records start at 1852.Frederick in Alexandria 1879 Ferderico Roberto Diacono aka Frederick Robert Diacono was born in Alexandria, Egypt, on the 9th May 1854 the son of Giuseppe Lorenzo Diacono (Joseph) (ca 1827 — 1900) and Maltese born mother, Carmina (Carmela) Anna Rosa Manche (1834—1901). His father was probably born in Alexandria, but his roots were Italian/Maltese. They were a Catholic family. Frederick was one of 13 children of which only six survived. He had four brothers, William Frederick(1862—1920); Roberto (Robert) Octave (1863—1941),; Edgardo(Edgar) William (1868—1934) and Giorgio (George 1870—1935) . He had one sister, Corina (Corinne 1871—1959).Guiseppe's  Lorenzo's Family Italian was the in–home language. They also spoke English, Maltese and some Arabic (the latter passable for living in Egypt). About 1874, Frederick went to England. He described himself as a “Coal Merchant”, and it would be reasonable to assume he was on Coal business, probably in Cardiff, Wales. Welsh coal bunkered ships traveling the globe using the Suez Canal via bunker ports such as Alexandria, Suez, Cairo, and through the Canal and on to Ceylon and the Pacific.
It was in London where Frederick met Louisa Annie Philipine Wiss. They married on her 21st birthday in 1876. Their only child, Cora Louisa Carmela Diacono, was born on 1st January 1878. On the Journey from England to Alexandria in 1879, Louisa Annie died at sea. The original death report had “Diaconus“ but was archived as Diacono.Louisa Annie Philipine Wiss Frederick left Cora in Alexandria with her paternal grandparents while he pursued Virginnie Lapierre as a second wife and a mother for his daughter. They were married in the Terra Santa Church, Larnaca, Cyprus on 13th June 1880. For Church Records Frederick‘s name was Latinised to Fredericus Diaconus. During the Orabi Revolution in Egypt (1881), Cora and her Grandparents fled Alexandria for Malta. In 1882 Frederick went to Malta, picked up his daughter and took her to Cyprus where he and Virginnie lived. It was the Lapierre family mansion on the Lapierre Estate in Kontea.
Virginnie‘s family can be traced back to Constantinople to Agnesi Lapierre, born ca 1720 and it is thought that they are descended from French Knights and the Crusades. Her family were “Dragoman” which designates the official title of a person who would function as an interpreter, translator and official guide between Turkish, Arabic, and Persian–speaking countries and the politeness of the Middle East and European embassies, consulates, vice–consulates and trading posts. A dragoman had to have knowledge of Arabic, Turkish and European languages.Lapierre Mansion Kontea Cyprus Cora and her Stepmother never got along. Six weeks after Frederick‘s return from Malta, Virginnie gave birth to her first child, a daughter named Edmeé. With a new baby and a very busy and talkative four–year–old underfoot, Virginnie began to take things out on Cora. This erupted into an incident whereby Cora‘s ankle was broken. and failed to mend properly.
By 1884, the Cyprus Diaconos were again in Egypt. Frederick‘s first son, Louis, was born at Tanta, in the cooler high country south of Alexandria. From there, it is assumed that, in early 1885, Frederick took Cora to England to be reared by her Maternal Grandmother. In 1885, he was working as an import/export/customs agent in Suakin, on the Red Sea, in the British held area during the Sudan War. His address was on a letter written to Cora in 1885. Frederick‘s second son, Joseph, was born in 1887. Frederick never saw Cora Again. It is understood that he was supporting her financially and indeed, there is evidence that, once Cora had learnt to read and write (this time in English), they did correspond.
By 1890—91, Frederick and his father Giuseppe Lorenzo Diacono , now called by his English name, Joseph Laurence, were working together as Agents for the French owned Credit Lyonnaise Bank in their Suez office.Courst House at Alexandria Egypt In 1892 the Credit Lyonnaise Bank brought charges against Frederick and his father for Larceny. The Court Details indicate an explanation that father and son had paid a client twice, the same sum of money and requested that the bank help them to retrieve the sum.
It is obvious that the explanation was not acceptable and a committal proceeding took place in Alexandria British Consular Court on 10th May 1893. At this time, Frederick‘s sister, Corina (or as she was known, Corinne), put up a 400 English Pounds Bond, for the release on bail of her father and brother, pending a trial to be held on 17th May 1893. Corinne‘s bond was a considerable sum of money which the Diacono family did not have, least of all, Corinne...she was a Teacher. It is not known for sure but believed the sum may have come from her future husband‘s family, the Zachers. At that time, in England, a family could live comfortably for one year on 50 English Pounds. The Committal hearing and preliminaries of the Trial are detailed in documents held at The National Archives, in Kew, London. The Archives have no Trial records beyond 10th May 1893.
The Trial never took place. It has been considered that Corinne‘s bond money was reimbursement to the Credit Lyonnaise Bank, or perhaps acted as a “bribe” to allow freedom for Frederick and his father. There is no paper trail to verify this.Cora Louisa Carmela Diacono 18 years Frederick could have been spirited out of Egypt to Cyprus by the Diacono Family.Ramleh Station Alexandria It is known he lived on the Lapierre Estate until his death on 22nd October 1898 from a chest ailment with an allied infection ...Possibly pneumonia. His father died on 28th September 1900. His mother died on 21st June 1901. Both passed away at Ramleh, Alexandria. They would have been buried in a Catholic Cemetery, not far from Ramleh.Church Records are difficult to find. It is believed that during the many political upheavals in Egypt which have spanned some 110 years, the records would probably reside with the Coptic Church in Alexandria.


Cora Diacono b. 1st January 1878 d. 1 December 1937 married Walter Robert Deller Fawcett in 1905. Still in England, Cora had two sons – Harold Granville (1906 — 1975) and Walter Robert Jr. (1907 — 1968) In 1908 Cora, her husband and two sons, set out for Australia on the SS Wilcannia arriving in 1909.Frederick's six Fawcett Grandchildren Over time, Cora had three daughters, Eva Louise Sarah ( 1912 — 2007), Phyllis May (1914 — 2008), and Lily (1920 — still alive in 2010) and another son, Leslie William ( 1917 — 1996).
Edmeé Diacono b. 11th March 1882 d. ca 1945 married ca. 1901—2 Benigno Carletti b. 1862 d. 1912
There were no male children born...
Yolande Carletti b 1902 d. ca. 1983 married Rob Olni
Mafalda Carletti b. 1908 d. 1915 no descendants.
Federica Carletti (Ricca) b. 1906? m. Count Andrea Rossi.
Linda Carletti b. 1904? m. Theophile Bert –
Louisetta (Gigetta ) Carletti b. 1912 d. 2000– m. Georges F Vssiliades (b. ? d. 1984)
Louis Diacono b. 1884 Tanta, Egypt d. 24.2.1965 Larnaca, Cyprus m. Despo Vlandi b. 1891 d. 1975. Louis is buried in the family grave with his parents and brother, Joseph, at Kontea, Cyprus.
Some descendants of the Diacono branch now live in Nicosia. Frederick and Virginnie‘s Great Grand children, living in Nicosia are Louis and Minolos Diacono.

Louis Diacono and Despo Vlandi‘s Children:
Catherine Diacono b 1912 died 1912
Frederick Diacono b. 1913. d. 1983 m. Blanche Hollis no children
Harry Diacono b. 1914 d. 1980 m. Kitsa Tsiropina b. ? d. 2006
Mary Diacono b. 1918. Alive in 2008. m Charles Pugh b. 1914 d. 1996 descendants.
Adele Diacono (Ada) m. 1 Fred Scriven there were children, m. 2. James Jarmen no children.
Catherine Diacono (Kitty) b. 1922 d . 1956 m. Michael Timotheou
Louise Diacono (Gigetta) b. 1932 never married – no descendants.
Joseph Diacono b. 1887 d. 1905 no descendants.

Frederick died in his 44th year.Frederick's Grave at Kontea Cyprus It is understood that he was highly respected in Kontea and was probably responsible for many gardens in the area. Since the Turkish invasion of Northern Cyprus in 1974,which saw the destruction of the Lapierre Mansion and allied buildings in Kontea, much of the Kontea history has been preserved by the Kontea Heritage Foundation..Lapierre Mansion, Kontea cyprus 1926
Page last updated ~ February 9, 2013