A Brief History of How Pizza Got Its Name

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Which pizza do you like the most? Styled after New York? Deep-dish pizza in Chicago? Do you prefer a dense crust or one that’s been thrown by hand? If you have any cheese left over? Maybe you’re a fan of wood-fired pizza as much as I am. Regardless of the type of pizza you want, we can all agree that pizza is delicious. Indeed, it is so well-liked in the world that many countries claim to have invented the first true pizza.

What is the origin of the word pizza?

Pizza may be derived from the Greek word “pitta,” which means “pie,” or from the Langobardic word “bizzo,” which means “bite.” It was first mentioned in a Latin text from 997 in Italy, and it was described as “a small cake or wafer” in an Italian-English dictionary in 1598.

We’ll go over some interesting stuff about pizza’s roots. But first, let’s talk about the history of this Italian food.

A Brief History of How Pizza Got Its Name

Pizza’s Origins

English speakers first began to use the term pizza in the early 1800s. However, John Florio, an early English lexicographer, added the word pizza to the Italian-English dictionary in 1598. “A small cake or wafer,” according to the description at the time.

Some claim pizza is derived from the Greek word pitta, which means “pie.” Others say it’s derived from the Langobardic language, an ancient Germanic language spoken in northern Italy. In Langobardic, the term bizzo refers to a bite.

This food is described as a flat bread baked in an oven, then the Babylonians, Israelites, and Egyptians who came from the Middle East should be credited with the invention of pizza because they ate flatbread baked in mud ovens.

If you describe pizza as bread with toppings, the Romans and Greeks are the ones who invented it. Bread with olive oil and spices was eaten by the Romans and Greeks. This type of bread is now known as Focaccia.

Who Invented Pizza and When Was It Invented?

The invention of modern-day pizzas is generally attributed to the Italians. Baked bread with additional toppings, on the other hand, can be found in many other cuisines’ forefathers.

Most people are familiar with the Italian version, especially those in Naples. However, pissaladiere from Provence, coca from Catalonia, and lahmacun from the Middle East are all quite close to pizza.

According to legend, Raffaele Esposito, a baker from Naples, introduced us to modern-day pizzas. In 1889, he prepared it for King Umberto and Queen Margherita, who were visiting Naples. He used mozzarella, onions, and basil as toppings for his food. He was attempting to mimic the Italian flag’s colours. The food was reportedly enjoyed by Queen Margherita. As a result, it was given the name Margherita pizza.

In the United States, Italian immigrants began selling pizza. Lombardi’s, New York City’s first pizzeria, opened in 1905. Following World War II, Americans started to go crazy for this Italian food. When stationed in Italy, American troops had the opportunity to try it. When they returned home, they carried their appetite for it with them.

Pizzas from various parts of the globe

It’s possible that people would argue about which country deserves credit for inventing pizza. However, there is one point that is unmistakable. People from all over the world love them! Pizza can be found in almost every country on the planet, believe it or not. different style dishes have been served in a variety of countries since the Neolithic period.

Ajeen Lahma

The Lebanese invented this delectable pizza variation. (In other parts of the Middle East, it’s known by various names.) “Meat with dough” is what Lahma Bi Ajeen means. Lamb, minced onions, cumin, and yogurt are usually used in this dish. This is one you should definitely pursue. It’s heavenly!


Calzones are an Italian-style pizza. Calzone translates to “stocking” in Italian. A semicircle turnover is the shape of the dish. It’s made of dough that’s folded over and filled with pizza toppings.


Calzones and strombolis are often confused by people. However, despite their identical rolled-up appearance, they’re two distinct dishes. The sources of stromboli are a point of contention among historians. Romano’s Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria, according to some sources, invented it in 1950 outside of Philadelphia.


Marinara is a pizza made with simple flatbread, tomato, garlic, olive oil, and oregano. This dish originates in Italy’s port of Naples. It’s possible that the name comes from Italians who kept Marinara on ships or from wives who made pizza for the sailors when they returned.


In the 1600s, Neapolitan bakeries in Naples were selling pizza. It was mostly considered a street food by poor Neapolitans at the time. Poor people used to spend a lot of time outside of their one-room homes. They’d also get a slice of pizza and eat it while walking down the street. Originally, these pies were not eaten with cheese. This is why modern Italian writers find their eating habits revolting.

The Neapolitan-style is a type of pizza that originated in Naples, Italy, and is the basis for modern-day pizza in the United States. But it all changed in 1889, when the Royal Palace commissioned Raffaele Esposito, a Neapolitan pizza master, to produce a pizza in Queen Margherita’s honor. The Margherita evolved from the Neapolitan in this way.


Italian-Americans in New Jersey, Manhattan, and Boston had opened a slew of pizzerias by the 1930s. Uno’s opened in Chicago in 1943, thanks to a man called Ike Sewell. Chicago-style pizza was born as a result of this. Despite the fact that pizza’s popularity grew, it remained a poor man’s food.

Deep Dish

Most pizzas are eaten with your mouth, but deep-dish pizza is traditionally served with a knife and fork. It is a Chicago-based band. A fascinating article about deep-dish pizza appears in the Chicago Tribune. It’s possible it came from a bad enchilada, according to reports.

Sewell expressed his dissatisfaction with the pizza’s quality. He considered it to be merely a starter. So, after some experimentation, the partners came up with a dish that was loaded with cheese and had a very thick crust.

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