When in Rome…see La Fontana Nuova on Via dei Gigli d’Oro

Towards the end of July, while wandering around the historic centre, I found myself on Via dei Gigli d’Oro. Before me were these reflections in a puddle covering part of the sampietrini.

And this video will show that in the absence of rain, the pool of water had in fact been created by what we’ve called La Fontaa Nuova.

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When in Rome…see the fountain in Piazza Venezia

Outside San Marco, on Piazza Venezia, is this fountain. It overlooks the Vittorio Emanuele. Alas, given the works going on on the piazza at the moment it wasn’t possible to photograph it in any other way than what you see below.

As for the fountain’s story, here’s what Turismo Roma has to say:

In 1927 the Municipality of Rome commissioned a fountain to Pietro Lombardi, to be placed in front of the Church of San Marco, inspired by the bronze pine cone that was located here and from which the name of the district derives. In the twelfth century the artifact was transferred to the Vatican, first it was used to decorate the center of the quadriporticus of the ancient basilica of San Pietro, and later placed in the homonymous courtyard and used as a fountain.

And here’s how one day I hope to photograph it.

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When in Rome…wander again 2/4

Let’s continue that wander we started last Tuesday with this: some neglect and decay, but beautiful nonetheless.

Quite a lot going on.

Windows and shutters.

And details.

Another street, another archway.

And some street art.

With another arch.

And more shutters.

And something to tease us through a closed door.

One of our favourite street shrines.

Some detail on high.

And some colours – with shutters.

And windows without shutters.

And something leaving you with a choice: which road to take.

Something indelibly Roman.

And some light and shade.

Some detail.

And something captured under cloudy conditions.

And something else a little less blue with which to conclude.

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When in Umbria…revisit Orvieto 1/3

As you may recall, last year we went to La Badia, just outside Orvieto, thanks to my late grandmother. We had planned to go back this year, but in a sign of the times I received an email to say that the hotel was not opening this year at all so my reservation was cancelled. In another sign of the times, it wasn’t too difficult to find somewhere else to stay, this year it being Poggio di Orvieto.

Arriving in Orvieto early afternoon, we parked just outside San Domenico. 

A quick visit done, we headed into the historic centre for lunch. That will feature in a future despatch. For now, this is something I saw on the way.

Lunch over, I headed off for an exploration of this historic centre. What follows are some highlights. Everything I recorded is accessible here, starting with something underneath the arches.

Some realia – the joy that never fades.

Something tantalising.

Which became even more tantalising once the other side of the partially open door.

From all angles.

Something under an Umbrian sky.

Something combining old and new.

Another street, another arch.

And something of the countryside by which Orvieto is surrounded.  

Did I mention arches?

And the Umbrian sky?

Back at the Poggio, this was the view when I open the door of my room.

And this is the Poggio proper.

Back in Orvieto for dinner, this was an early evening view.

With the sun going down on the town.

And the glow of sunset lingering a while.

With the moon, seemingly blurry.

And finally what everyone in Orvieto on a night really wants to see: the facade lit up.

With a short video for you too. Enjoy!

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When in Rome…visit Santa Sabina in the time of COVID-19

A couple of weekends ago, my wanderings took me to the Aventine Hill, it being one of the places I wanted to see in this time of splendour and suffering in The Eternal City. Of course, one of things I most wished to do was revisit Santa Sabina. As with almost everything here at the moment, it was like nothing I’ve ever experienced before. When I first entered, I was the only person there. That continued for some time before eventually small numbers of other people visited too. As I left, a German family was having the details of this special church read to them by the son. About the Germans and the French I must write some more soon – and about the British and the Americans, or rather the lack of them both, especially the latter. For now, though, I hope the enjoy the album accessible here and those images below – and if you ever find yourself in Rome, do visit Santa Sabina!

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When in Rome…see the fountain on Piazza di Campitelli

On Piazza Campitelli, just round the corner from Teatro Marcello, stands a large fountain, part of the seeming Acqua Felice series. It was constructed in 1589 and the Rome Art Lover website has this to say about it:

The name of Giacomo della Porta is again mentioned for the design of the fountain, which was initially placed at the centre of the square, but was moved to its current position in 1679. It is decorated with the coats of arms of families residing in the area, including the Capizucchi and the Paluzzi Albertoni. The monastery on the left side of the church included a small palace which still bears the name of Lorenzo Stati, its first owner.

Here are just a couple of photographs of it. I’ll return one day to record all the coats of arms.

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