Massimo is the name of a Roman princely family of great age; which by long accepted tradition descends from the ancient Maximi of republican Rome and from Quintus Fabius Maximus (c. 275 BC-203 BC), called Cunctator (the Delayer). When asked by Napoleon (with whom he was negotiating the Treaty of Tolentino) whether the family descended from Fabius Maximus, the then Prince Massimo famously replied "I do not know that it is true, but it has been a tradition in the family for some thirteen or fourteen hundred years.". The family is generally recognised as one of the oldest noble families in Europe.
+ Fabius was a Roman politician and soldier, born in Rome around 275 BC. He was consul five times (233 BC, 228 BC, 215 BC, 214 BC and 208 BC) and was twice dictator, 221–219 BC, and 217 BC. His nickname Cunctator means "delayer" in Latin, and refers to his tactics in deploying the troops during the Second Punic War where he defeated Hannibal. Descended from an ancient patrician family, the Fabii, he was a grandson of Quintus Fabius Maximus Gurges and a great-grandson of Quintus Fabius Maximus Rullianus, both famous consuls. According to Plutarch, the first of the Fabii was born from the liaison of Hercules with a nymph, rendering the family's origins semi-divine..