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Basilica of Saint John and Paul – Venice

Venice in Italy would seem somewhat complicated in terms of its structure as a city. Its metropolitan area is comprised of six municipalities. The best known of these is the municipality “Venezia-Murano-Burano”. The historic center of “Venezia” in turn is sub-divided into districts called “Sestieris”. The “Sestieri de San Marcos” is the most tourist district of Venice, although each “Sestieri” has its own tourist attractions. Continue reading “Basilica of Saint John and Paul – Venice”

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The Palatine and the Roman forum

During our recent visit to Rome, we enjoyed our stay in a small and pleasant hotel, right on the “Via Nazionale”, a few blocks from the “Via dei Fori Imperiali”. When one observes the Avenue of the Imperial Forum, one were able to affirm its depth, as it creates the road to the Roman Colosseum. This important road was built under the government of Benito Amilcare Andrea Mussolini and crosses what was the ancient city. Continue reading “The Palatine and the Roman forum”

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Another city with a leaning tower; Pisa

Having visited the leaning towers of “Asinelli” and “Garisenda” in Bologna, we soon stepped on another city with leaning towers, Pisa. Known worldwide for having the greatest inclination, the bell tower of the “Duomo di Pisa” is also the most recognized monument in the city. Continue reading “Another city with a leaning tower; Pisa”

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“Basilica of San Petronio” – Bologna

Very little is known about “San Petronio”, his life and work. He was bishop of Bologna during the 5th century and as such, he was responsible for the construction of the church of “Santo Stefano” of Bologna. It was in this church where the relics of “San Petronio” rested until later they were transferred to the basilica that bears his name.

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The Amphitheater of the Flavian Emperors

The Roman people enjoyed shows such as gladiatorial games (of the Etruscans), simulations of naval battles, hunting or fighting of wild animals (venations), car races and other events. The Roman amphitheater evolved from the two-sided Greek stadiums and semicircular theaters. It also represented an improvement over the Roman “Circus Maximus,” elliptically with a fixed central divider. The spine would impair the display of certain events. Continue reading “The Amphitheater of the Flavian Emperors”

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“Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore” – Firenze

One of the most flourishing and developing cities in ancient times was Florence. It was the center of medieval European commerce and finance. Birthplace of the Renaissance and the standard Italian language, home of Michelangelo’s “David”, the city of the Medicis, the “Ponte Vecchio” and the capital of Tuscany. The centerpiece of this historically valuable city is another treasure; the whole of the “Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore”.

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The Metropolitan Cathedral of the Assumption of Santa Maria, Siena

Siena is one of the beautiful cities that we can find in Tuscany, a region of central Italy surrounded by the main mountain ranges, with fertile hills and plains. The city of Siena is known for its medieval center and for the “Palio”, a very famous horse race that they celebrate twice a year. Continue reading “The Metropolitan Cathedral of the Assumption of Santa Maria, Siena”

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The two Towers: “Garisenda and degli Asinelli” – Bologna

Upon leaving Venice, the city of Bologna is the obvious choice for another stop on our adventure through Italy. Bologna is the capital of the “Emilia-Romagna” region in northern Italy. It is also an important transport hub, in particular its Bologna Centrale station, which serves as a crossroads for all the main train systems in Italy. Continue reading “The two Towers: “Garisenda and degli Asinelli” – Bologna”

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The Legacy of Cardinal d’Este, Villa d’Este, Tivoli

Villa d’Este is located in the town of Tivoli, Italy. In order to understand origen of the Villa d’Este, we must go back to the fourth century, when Christianity becomes the official religion of the Roman Empire. Once this happens, the bishops of Rome began to acquire a substantial amount of property around Rome (known as the Patrimony of St. Peter) and what is known as central Italy. This eventually evolved into the “Papal States” and included the regions of Lazio, Marche, Umbria and part of Emilia-Romagna. The Church’s control over these areas was unquestionable.

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