Its geo-political position has made the island of Sicily since ancient times a place of convergence and divergence for many different ethnic groups. Sicily is the largest island of the Mediterranean. Too small to be an independent power in the Mediterranean but large enough to become a gateway and crossroad of the region. Location and size have determined her history and have shaped the character of her inhabitants from prehistoric times to the present.
Many were its settlers and colonizers but all acted as conquerors. They brought to Sicily their lifestyles, traditions, customs and cultures and tried to impose them on the natives. In so doing, they tried to change the identity of the islanders. The conquerors left significant marks but failed to change the character of the Sicilian people.
British historians have made important contributions to our understanding of the Sicilians. In A History of Sicily, M. I. Finley provides an excellent chronological excursus of the history of