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Il contenuto è disponibile anche nella sola versione audio. Gaetano Dentamaro Radicali Italiani. Bruno Mellano Radicali Italiani.

Giuseppe Rippa direttore del periodico "Quaderni Radicali". Vincenzo Rinaldi Radicali Italiani. Irene Abigail Piccinini Radicali Italiani. Kady Koita chairman of the European Network for the Prevention and removed the genital mutilation famminili. Rahim Kamara presidente del Manifesto Lamine Boubakar Traorè antropologo, professore all'Università di Mali.

This type of architecture is particular; the Fescina is the only example of it in the Campi Flegrei or the entire Campania region of Italy, at the very least.

This kind of structure was, however, widespread in the Hellenic Age in the eastern Mediterranean, which has led to some speculation that the family that built this one was from Asia Minor. There are a few other pyramid mausoleums in Italy, most notably the tomb of Gaius Cestius in Rome, built in c. That one is large 37 meters high and is a true pyramid; it was almost certainly modeled on Egyptian pyramid tombs during the so-called "Cleopatra craze" in ancient Rome.

It seems to have little in common with the Fescina. I am tempted to say that the Fescina may be unique in all of Italy, but I would be happy for some clarification.

There are also three reclining couch-beds known as triclinia; they are of brick and were intended for ritual banquets. Two slit openings higher up allowed light and air to enter. The part visible above ground appears to be about 6 7 meters high.

The area was excavated in the s and 80s. The Fescina was part of a larger Necropolis. Roman brick work that placed the pointed ends of diamond-shaped bricks into cement such that the square bases formed a diagonal pattern on the surface of a wall. The pattern of mortar lines resembled a net or reticulatum in Latin. The word is a dialect variation of fascina accent on the second syllable.

The English term is "fascine" i. It is a cognate of fascio, a bundle or sheaf of grain, which then became a political symbol and has given us the term Fascism. T he first architectural results of the industrial revolution sprang up in Britain in the middle of the 19th century: By using iron, these architects sought to reconcile the split in the Victorian personality, which viewed such industrial material as the substance of engines to power modern society with, perhaps, but hardly the stuff of Architecture with a capital A—the discipline of designing museums, hotels, universities and other such places for the genteel to gather.

S uch use of glass and iron, however, was to revolutionize architecture and eventually lead to the first steel-framed skyscrapers of the Chicago architects before the century was out.

High vaulted glass and iron domes, governed by their own new architectural aesthetics, characterized a number of structures built in Europe in the last decades of the nineteenth century.

It was inaugurated in , and named for Umberto I, who was king of Italy from until when he died at the hands of an assassin [see this entry on an earlier attempted assassination of Umberto]. There is a slightly earlier, smaller example of the same type of architecture in Naples, the Galleria Principe di Napoli.

T he idea behind the Risanamento 'resanitizing' or 'making healthy again' of Naples in the s and 90s was to clear large sections of the city that for centuries had been nests of squalid overcrowding and disease; then rational construction could take place. The wide boulevard known as Corso Umberto or the Rettifilo, the 'straight line' running from Piazza della Borsa all the way to the main train station at Piazza Garibaldi was one result of this effort, as was the construction of a new seaside road and 20 blocks of new buildings at Santa Lucia.

The Galleria Umberto was another. T here was a need to renew the area across from San Carlo known as Santa Brigida, and four designs were submitted. One by Emanuele Rocco was chosen. His plan left in place a number of historic buildings that others would have torn down, yet presented a high and spacious cross-shaped mall, a truly cathedralesque affair surmounted by a great glass dome braced by 16 metal ribs.

Of the four glass-vaulted wings, one fronts on via Toledo via Roma , still the main downtown thoroughfare, and another opens onto the San Carlo Theater, framed like a splendid proscenium by the portals of the gallery photo, below. The Galleria Umberto was based on the design of the gallery in Milan completed in ; yet, it was a more aesthetic fusion of the industrial glass and metal of the upper part and the masonry below, which, itself, is a spectacular collage of Renaissance and Baroque ornamentation, tapering off to clean smoothness of marble at the ground concourse.

Other architects involved were Ernesto Mauro and Antonio Curri, the latter being primarily behind the intensely ornate decorative and symbolic designs that cover surfaces in the Galleria. He also worked on restoring the interior of the San Carlo theater as well as the delightful interior of the nearby Gambrinus Caffè.

T he Gallery was built to stimulate commerce and to be a symbol of a city reborn. It still contains numerous cafès, businesses, book and record shops, and fashionable stores. Once it held theaters and restaurants as well, and was, indeed, the sitting room of bourgeois Naples.

One such theater was the fabled Salone Margherita , home of the l ocal version of the café-chantant. It was below the main concourse with a stairway leading down to it and a separate entrance from street-level outside. It was closed for many years and is currently being rebuilt. The fate of the Galleria Umberto has come to be somewhat of a metaphor of Naples, meaning that there are good times and bad, periods of splendor as well as decay.

Among its many ups and downs is even the fact that it was the target of aerial bombardment by a dirigible in the First World War! These days, you can still —and should still— marvel at the architecture, its deceptive orderliness as it moves and shifts like Proteus from one detail to the next. Yet, the Galleria also lets you become for a moment the center of an equally fascinating bit of flesh-and-blood architecture: Perhaps they are well-dressed, perhaps disheveled; the weird as well as the mundane, the casual and the poised.

From the perfectly nondescript to those who look like extras in some bizarre film, they all have their own reasons for being drawn to what is still a most remarkable structure. The horses in Naples are reared up; they look wild and as yet untamed, while the horse tamers, themselves, are as naked as the horses.

It all looks savage and somewhat un Italian,lets say Russian and steppe-like at least compared to other stately and totally tamed equestrian statues in the city the two mounted versions of Charles III and his son, Ferdinand I in the square on the west side of the same royal palace, for example.

But the inspiration is very classical; the statues are variations of the colossal Roman marbles of Castor and Pollux, the Heavenly Twins, posed with their steeds at the fountain on the Quirinal Hill in Rome.

The Horse Tamers in Naples were cleaned and restored in which, incidentally, is the last time I have seen that particular entrance to the gardens open. There was a reason for the good relations between Imperial Russia and the Kingdom of Naples in the s that impelled the czar to give away two of his prize monuments.

For a while, then, the Russian and Turks put aside their centuries of dispute to make common cause against the French. The immediate goal was to dislodge the French-supported Neapolitan Republic proclaimed in January, and reinstall the Bourbon monarchy to the throne of Naples. A body of five- or six-hundred Russians and Turks landed on the Adriatic coast, having crossed from Corfu, to assist the Royalist forces under Ruffo in retaking the kingdom.

They were successful, and the Russian and Turkish commanders both signed the armistice agreement by which the Bourbons in this case, King Ferdinand I were restored in Naples. One grandfather had helped another, and both grandsons were now still absolute monarchs, still resisting the gathering forces of reform at mid-century. That is worth a couple of statues. In his Decameron, Giovanni Boccaccio devoted an entire tale Second Day, Tale Four to the adventures of one Landolfo Rufolo, a contemporary of his from the town of Ravello on the "delightful He then "lived in honorable estate" until his death.

Poster of first Wagner Festival, As if from Snoopy's Dark-and-Stormy-Night school of great coincidences, just a few years earlier c. Wagner visited the Villa Rufolo in and was so inspired by the beauty of the garden that he declared, "Here is the enchanted garden of Klingsor. And what were Mommy and Daddy von Eschenbach thinking when they named their kid "Wolfram," a word that means "tungsten" in German?

And how would young Tungsten have rated Wagner? Say, do you guys know anything by Hildegard von Bingen? Alas, we may never know the answer to some of these questions, but see how it all ties together? Wagner apparently rode up to the Villa Rufolo from Amalfi on a mule. What did mules ever do to God?! Wagner was a notorious deadbeat and left an unpaid tab at the Palumbo Hotel, but, as it turned out 70 years later , more than made up for it by transforming the villa and all of Ravello into a money magnet.

Ravello held its first Wagner music festival in The yearly affair has since grown in scope and continues to attract hordes of music lovers and performers of world renown every year. The restoration of the villa, itself, was in the hands of Michele Ruggiero, a gentleman who then took over the excavations at Pompeii. Significant parts of the original villa are still intact, including the main tower and intriguing Norman-Arab columns photo, right along a passageway through the villa and to the back of the property where the outdoor concerts are held.

The stage is set up at feet over the slope and sea looking due east along the folds of the mountain range of the Amalfi coast. The view is stunning. I t is proverbial that there is something universal about humor, yet, nothing translates with more difficulty from one culture to another than film comedy.

Once films started to speak, the rules changed, which is why highly verbal comics such as Groucho Marx are so difficult to render into another language. A pie in the face, a prat fall, or a piano falling downstairs cross cultural and language barriers much easier than trying to translate, "Bernstein is out in the corridor waxing wroth!

Well, tell him to get in here and let Roth wax himself for a while! True, he is often full of the verbal dexterity that only native speakers of Italian can appreciate, yet his flights of outrageous language are so often combined with pure visual humor that he is easily one of the most accessible of all film comics, language and culture notwithstanding. His early career started after WW I in vaudeville and expanded into films. He made 85 of them in all. Some of them, of course, are silly potboilers, fun but forgettable.

Others are "art," the kind you wind up admiring, but still puzzling over and studying in History of Cinema classes, such as his brilliant work in Uccellacci ed uccellini lit.

Others, the most memorable ones, have him in the role of the true clown, the little man down on his luck, just trying to make it through another day. There is this poignancy in Guardie e Ladri Cops and Robbers.

I have a blank check! But most Italians knew right from the start what it took critics decades to figure out, and now through the pleasant little time-machine known as television, we can all see why. The title has to do with the smorfia , the tradition of interpreting dreams, of associating numbers with certain things in dreams and then playing those numbers in the lottery.

The presumption is that someone on "the other side" is giving you a hot tip. Number 47 in the Smorfia is Dead Man Talking, so if you have a dream in which you are conversing with, say, one of your dearly departed, 47 is one number you should play. Unfortunately, you need at least three "hits" to have any chance of making real money.

That's three friends in very high places—perhaps too much to ask in any one week. T he film was made in and is a loose adaptation of a stage comedy of the same name by Roman playwright, Ettore Petrolini with some of Moliere's The Miser thrown in. They drug him and cart him away to a Stygian landscape replete with fumaroles and other Dantean special effects; when he comes to his senses, those who were his friends in life are standing around in bed sheets and laurel wreaths, moaning and otherwise impersonating characters whom you might expect to meet in the doom and gloom antechamber of the hereafter.

I won't spoil the rest of the film for you, but I remember being taken with the set for the scene where he wakes up: It turns out that it was filmed on location in Naples—right outside of Naples, really, in the Solfatara, a very active and bubbling sulfur pit. It is located in the area known as the Campi Flegrei. Indeed, Petronius, in The Satyricon reminds us….

S trabo 66 B. T he Solfatara is, at present, a protected nature reserve open to tourism. It is, indeed, at the "bottom of a cavern"—a large crater of volcanic origin and one that is still very active, geologically. In its long history, the Solfatara has suffered from benign neglect as well as commercial exploitation, having been mined for is alum and chalk as well as serving as a source for mineral water with reputed medicinal value.

Its value as a scientific station for the study of the geologically very interesting activity in the area started in when the property was purchased by the De Luca family, which included Francesco De Luca, a physicist.

His scientific descriptions of the area, the mineral content of the soil and waters, etc. The area was officially opened to visitors in but had long been—bound as it is to Greek and Roman Mythology—a stop on the so-called "Grand Tour". T here have been a number of recent documentaries on Italian national TV about the Solfatara.

They refer to the site as an "active volcano" and have used it—with nearby Vesuvius, of course—as a point of departure to discuss the geology of the entire Bay of Naples. I have heard that the pazzariello still exists, but I have never seen one except in a period re-enactment of the Naples of days gone by. Indeed, in April , RAI, the Italian state radio, ran a short program called "The Last Pazzariello of Naples" in which they went to a hospital in the Spanish Quarters and talked to Michele Lauri, born in , the gentleman purported to be the last of his kind except, as I say, in re-enactments.

For many centuries, before mass printing and then electronics made it so much easier to spread the word, there was a profession called "town crier" or some variation thereof—a person paid to walk around and shout out the news of the day and also get in a few ads for local merchants. The pazzariello was that person in Naples. Typically, he dressed in mock military garb—a homemade uniform with bizarre medals, epaulets and a diagonal sash across the chest. He wore a fancy French Bourbon tricorner hat, usually with the points at front and back instead of on the side and carried a large baton.

He looked perhaps more like a circus ringmaster than a general, but at least it was conspicuous. The pazzariello from the Neapolitan verb pazziare —to joke was usually accompanied by a small band of at least a flautist and a bass-drum. He paraded around the streets and announced that a new shop was opening, or that this or that shop was almost giving away merchandise, so hurry, hurry, hurry—or that so-and-so had lost a wedding ring and would the finder please have it in his heart to return it.

He told a few jokes, rhymed a few couplets, and there were also the obligatory bits of gossip and anti-establishment comments. He and his small entourage picked up the few coins that people tossed their way. If the pazzariello is familiar at all to those outside of Italy, it is probably through the film, L'oro di Napoli The Gold of Naples , directed by Vittorio De Sica The film consists of five episodes six in the US release based on those found in the book of the same name by Giuseppe Marotta Don Michele, the real deal, had a bit part in the film and was a technical adviser.

Also here for an episode from both book and film. If you don't like zoos, I understand. The animals in zoo posters all look-well, not too unhappy about being in prison. The giraffes look sufficiently goofy, the tigers still look proud and menacing, and the elephants seem unperturbed.

In real life, however, I still have to be convinced that wild animals should be contained in anything less than one of those wild animal safari parks, where there is at least the illusion of open space.

If I hear that well-maintained zoos are one of the ways in which we help endangered species survive, then I guess I have to accept that. And so I accept the newly reopened Naples zoo for what it seems to be: The recent history of the zoo in Naples has been a disaster. It was founded in on the premises of the gigantic Mostra d'oltremare-Overseas Fair Grounds-in the Fuorigrotta section of Naples, though it didn't begin regular operation until after WWII.

Over the next few decades, it acquired some sort of a reputation as a decent zoological facility-or so they tell me-but the first time I visited it in the s I didn't like it. As I say, some people don't like zoos at all. I never went back. In the s, the zoo-financed and run by the city-started to decline badly. By , animals were suffering and dying from neglect. Volunteers and unpaid staffers struggled to keep it open.

Private citizens were going to butcher shops, buying whatever they figured a lion might like and carrying it over to the zoo! It was closed in I remember how good I felt for the animals that they were being shipped out to facilities elsewhere. The zoo has reopened recently under the private management of the owners of the adjacent amusement park, Edenlandia, so I took my second visit to the place the other day.

The literature for the zoo guarantees that the animals are properly cared for, so I'll give them the benefit of the doubt on that score. I didn't visit the whole place, but I saw a well-landscaped facility, an elephant, a few tigers, a camel, some flamingos, and even a small farm-animal petting enclosure for children. The children seemed to like it and the goats didn't seem to mind. There was even a row of smaller cages "The way they used to pen up animals in zoos" for exhibit purposes only.

Maybe those are the ones I remember. The new enclosures are much larger. If private management can make it a going concern and fulfill the plans to expand into the currently unused spaces of the east end of the Fair Grounds, then I'm satisfied. Not happy, but satisfied.

There is still something not right about a tiger in a cage. The elephant I saw was leisurely tossing dust on herself but, alas, item 5, below ; the camel was just staring at the starers; but the tigers were pacing. That's what they do. Sabrina, the year-old female elephant-the only elephant left at the Naples zoo-is in danger of dying from an intestinal obstruction.

Doctors from the university department of veterinary medicine and experts from as far away as Tel Aviv have converged on the zoo to see if they can save her. It is, according to reports, very iffy. The zoo, itself, though an immense improvement over what the place used to be, still needs to be restructured. Contsruction is supposed to start in September on a major expansion into the adjacent and largely unused area at the east end of the large fair grounds in Fuori Grotta, the Mostra d'Oltremare.

The new entity will be called Animalia and will be on the order of those large safari parks where animals have more room to roam. I last looked in on the premises of these facilities five years ago and expressed cautious optimism.

Both facilities had a long history of problems see those links, above when they were taken over in by the Park and Leisure Corporation, which tried to administer both as a single enterprise. For a while, it looked good, at least to me. The company, however, wound up 13 million euros in debt and was finally declared insolvent.

A final disposition on how to deal with the crisis in case there are no takers to buy the premises that also include the adjacent ex-dog-racing track has been put off until February of next year. The area is at the west end of the large Mostra d'Oltremare in the suburb of Bagnoli and has always seemed the perfect place for facilities that serve the leisure time of citizens in a crowded city.

Perfect places to take the kids. Jan 24 Zoo emergency, again. The crisis has not been resolved, and the international press has reported that animals in the Naples zoo are days away from starvation. This means, of course, that a local paper ran a timely feature on it yesterday! I suspect that if past performance is any indicator, the city will find a band-aid solution to the problem.

The last time this happened, 10 years ago, animals were fed by supplies from private citizens who carted food in. Some favor releasing the large carnivores into city hall while the city council is in session.

A few days later. It now seems that Alfredo Villa, the Italian-Swiss owner of a company called Brainspark has agreed to buy the Zoo and Edenladia property and pump enough money into it to bring the whole leisure park back to life.

What's more, say this morning papers, the jobs of the dozens of personnel connected with the facility will be saved. Everyone seems to be happy. October 25 Wherever the mythical Elephant Graveyard is supposed to be, it now has another resident.

Sabrina, the icon of the Naples zoo, a year-old female elephant, also noted five-years ago when she was merely ill, has died. Sabrina was the only elephant in the zoo. Not exactly solitary confinement, but for a social species such as the elephant, it probably comes close.

She came to the zoo in Fifty-six is kind of middle-aged for an elephant; maybe she just got lonely. Or maybe it was the zoo. I have not been back there in a while because it was so depressing. Anyway, the last word to John Donne: Nov 3 - Sabrina, thou shouldst be living at this hour! The last time I wrote about the Naples Zoo, it was on the death of Sabrina, the only elephant the solitude alone is probably what killed her.

My other entries on the zoo are on this page. They redepress me when I read them. Perhaps this time around, things are looking up, and it's about time. The Zoo website announces "Great Expectations lead to Grand Surpises" in the form of mother and daughter, Wini and Julia 48 and 23 years old, respectively , newly arrived from Copenhagen at least it's warmer in Naples!

Their Danish keeper arrived with them, so as not to make the change too abrupt. They have a new elephant house, green grass, a huge water pool, trees to scratch on and about one acre to roam around in. It doesn't seem like much, but it is, after all, a zoo. They say in their promo literature that " The organization is an umbrella for specialist groups such as the European Endangered Species Programs and various breeding programs.

The Naples Zoo, in its literature, says that some of the facilities are not yet fully open because they are being restructured. What can I say?

If they don't give these two beautiful creatures whom John Donne called,"Nature's great masterpiece Apr 3 - Things seem to be looking up for the Naples zoo.

As you may read on this page, the place has had a lot of downs, as well. His weight can expect to double and he'll reach a height of 5 meters. That's what eating 30 kg a day of leaves will do for you.

Lubango comes from the Vienna Zoo, where he was born in captivity. In Naples he'll roam around an enclosure with three elephants, gnus, ostriches and some baby llamas.

Recently the zoo has also added a crocodile, a hippo and inaugurated a new tiger enclosure. Presumably the sweet widdle wwamas and Lubango, the new giwaffie, are not in the same enclosure as the croc or tigers. I've seen them do worse! Though the IUCN International Union for the Conservation of Nature does not count the giraffe as an endangered species, the population is declining in Africa due to the destruction of habitat.

The entire Naples Zoo now is on 80, sq. Their promo literature goes to great ends to tell us that they're doing their very best to expand and maintain. I've heard that before, but I'm hopeful. April 9, - The Naples zoo has presented two new tigers, Annibale and Arcana. They were donated by private philanthropy. Arcana is an example of a white tiger pictured also known as the bleached tiger, a pigmentation variant of the Bengal tiger. We note that this particular sub-species of tiger no longer exists in the wild.

The last wild white tiger was killed in the s; all white tigers alive today are the result of careful breeding programs. They are not that rare considering the great number of breeding programs in the world, especially in India. In European zoos, however, they are not too common; the Zoologic Garden of Lisbon has five, all born in the zoo; and two Bengal white tigers were born in a zoo in Gyor Hungary in January There are a few others.

Naples now joins the list. Somewhat earlier, in , the geological observatory , itself, had been founded, right on the slopes. The institution was the brain-child of Macedonio Melloni , who became the first director. It survived the political upheavals that came with the conquest of the Kingdom of Naples and its absorption into the modern nation state of Italy. The directorship then passed to Luigi Palmieri , who was on duty constantly during the eruption.

You can see the observatory today and from a distance notice that it sits on a handy knoll with the lava flow of the '72 eruption going around it! There were even more scientific heroics as the director, Prof. Palmieri, refused to leave so he could man the instruments. Unlike Matteucci, later, Palmieri was totally cut-off and alone. There is always a "same guy who did". The spire in the square of San Domenico Maggiore "In Naples, the answer to that question is usually "yes.

There was a small, busy cadre of illustrious painters, sculptors and architects in the Naples of the s and s who created much of what made the city into an artistic treasure in those years. The sculptor Giuseppe Sanmartino comes to mind; his magnificent Veiled Christ is more famous than his other works scattered throughout the city, but it by no means puts the others to shame--not by a long shot.

If you see a Baroque-y church in Naples and you're not sure, guess Fanzago. Statistically, it's better than even money, and even if you're wrong, it will still impress your friends. Your enemies, however, may counter with, "But what about that double-gerbilled hyper-atrium. Vaccaro is another one of the great creators of eighteenth-century Naples. As a painter, he trained under Francesco Solimena.

It is, however, his sculpture and architecture that left an indelible stamp on the city. Having said that, unfortunately one of Vacarro's early works of sculpture proved to be not so indelible after all.

The grand obelisk in the middle of Piazza del Ges, perhaps the most ornate work in the entire city, was originally surmounted by a bronze equestrian monument to Philip V of Spain, a splendid piece by Vaccaro and his father, Lorenzo, a prominent artist in his own right.

When the Spanish were forced out of Naples in , the monument was destroyed. Charles III later replaced it very wisely with a statue of the Immaculate Virgin, supremely immune from fickle mobs of statue-topplers. Much of Vaccaro's sculpture is on the premises of the San Martino monastery now a museum , such as the figures of Providence and Divine Grace for the chapel of San Giovanni Battista John the Baptist on the premises, as well as half-length busts of St Januarius and St Martin for the main courtyard.

He worked extensively, as well, to decorate the crypt of the church of San Paolo Maggiore in the historic center of the city.

The Immacolatella Vaccaro's most visible work in the historic center is another tall column top photo this one in the square of San Domenico Maggiore. The spire was started after the plague of ; the design was by Cosimo Fanzago. Vaccaro later undertook to finish the project and delivered it in The finished carved obelisk and bronze statute of St. Dominic on the top are his. Vaccaro also did innumerable models for silversmiths and ornate figures for the presepe, the traditional Neapolitan Christmas manger displays.

Picchiatti is also responsible for the chapel in the building of Pio Monte della Misericordia in Naples, which contains Caravaggio's The Seven Works of Mercy as well as for the original convent of Santa Croce di Luca, begun in The convent stood at the extreme western end of the old historic city 39 on this map. It was demolished in to make room for the new Polyclinic hospital; a small section was left standing as a historical marker. Additionally, Picchiatti was one of the architects who carried on from Fanzago on the construction of the church of Santa Maria Egiziaca a Pizzofalcone.

The story has come down that Picchiati's home was somewhat of a museum in itself, testimony to his wide-ranging interests behind his profession.

His private "museum" held 20, ancient coins, 6, inscribed pieces of marble, bronze statues, various domestic implements of aniquity, ancient weapons, a library of paintings and books. Vaccaro's architecture is what may stand out to casual visitors to the city. Anyone who visits the courtyard of the Santa Chiara complex will note the majolica decoration photo, above. Click here for a separate item on the restoration of that courtyard. As well, a stroll along the otherwise dismal port section of Naples will bring you to the delightful but as yet unrestored!

That, too, is Vaccaro's. He also planned what turned out to be the most spectacular building never [sic] built in Naples! It was to be the Palazzo Tarsia, now in the heart of the crowded Montesanto section of Naples and overlaid by two centuries of rebuilding, destruction and subdividing. The outlines of the original building, amorphously wedged into an unbelievable hive of buildings, are vaguely indentifiable from above.

The elaborate terraces, ramps and gardens to the extent that they were ever completed are gone. Vaccaro's own engraving for the project still exists illustration, left. If you think you understand what was happening in southern Italy between the coming of the Angevin dynasty in s and its departure in the s, then you have not been paying attention. And even if you have, it really wonot help much. It was a complicated time.

Maybe this short version will help. I am wondering about a book called Queen of Night, by Alan Savage. I haven't read the book, but I have read a plot description that includes this passage:. Queen Joanna I of Naples was the most beautiful and accomplished woman of her times. She is also remembered as a cold-blooded murderess and woman of the most questionable morals.

Queen of Night is her story Queen of Night is an enthralling account of a truly remarkable woman.. Joanna I I am tempted to think that the author, like many-including Neapolitans-has fused Joanna I and Joanna II into a single woman-beautiful, accomplished, cold-blooded, and immoral- kind of like Gene Tierney in Leave Her to Heaven, or, for the younger generation, the queen beast in Alien Resurrection.

To set the record straight primarily to get poor Joanna I off the hook here is the chronology of the Angevin dynasty in Naples:. Joanna I became sovereign of Naples in succession to her grandfather King Robert in She has no record of immoral intrigue. OK, some say she had a hand in the murder of her first husband, but it was the 14th century-that's a parking ticket. She was put to death by Charles, duke of Durazzo, who regarded himself as the legitimate king of Naples.

It is this woman who fits the description of "accomplished," at least intellectually. She kept the company of the poets and scholars of her time, including Petrarch and Boccaccio. Joanna II Joanna II, on the other tentacle, is the preying mantis man-eating queen that Neapolitans still speak of when they point out this or that building and whisper, "That's where Joanna murdered her men after making love to them. This Joanna came to the throne at the age of 45 after a dissolute life.

She brought with her a young lover and went through a series of others in a period that is one of the most confusing in the confusing history of Naples. The traditional view is that she was not a particularly astute woman, and that her reign was one long scandal, one which ran through even the reign of her immediate successor and did not end until the entire Angevin dynasty was replaced by the Aragonese.

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Copia tutto il codice e incollalo all'interno del contenuto del tuo sito. Il player verrà caricato da remoto ed utilizzerà la tecnologia Flash ove disponibile, e html5 sui dispositivi mobili compatibili con i nostri media. Segnala errori nella scheda. Dall'8 all'11 dicembre Sono stati discussi i seguenti argomenti: La registrazione video del congresso ha una durata di 6 ore e 4 minuti. Il contenuto è disponibile anche nella sola versione audio. Gaetano Dentamaro Radicali Italiani.

Bruno Mellano Radicali Italiani. Because of his patronage of the arts he became known as Alfonso the Magnanimous. He also started the total rebuilding of the Angevin Fortress, fallen into ruin since its completion in the late s; he paved the streets of the city, cleaned out the swamps and greatly enlarged the wool industry that had been introduced by the Angevins.

In spite of his pretensions to simplicity, he was addicted to splendor. At a Neapolitan reception for Frederick III of Germany, the order of the day to all the artisans in the Kingdom was to give Frederick's men whatever they wanted and send Alfonso the bill.

Then they all went hunting in the great crater known as the "Astroni" in the Phlegrean Fields and had a banquet at which wine flowed down the slopes and into the fountains for the guests. Parties, however, did not prevent Alfonso, by the time of his death in , from also having developed the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies into the foremost naval power in the western Mediterranean.

Alfonso's illegitimate son, Ferrante, succeeded him and, in spite of extreme hostility on the part of the feudal lords in the kingdom, succeeded in strengthening the monarchy at their expense.

He also drove the Angevin fleet from Ischia, their last stronghold in the area. Ferrante countered baronial hostility most violently. To show the barons that feudalism was truly dead he made a lot of them dead, by doing things such as inviting them to weddings and then arresting, jailing and executing a number of them.

They say that some were fed to a crocodile that prowled the dungeon. A skeleton of one such reptile hung over the arch in the Castle until quite recently. He even mummified some of his late enemies and kept them on display in the dungeon of the Castelnuovo the alternate name for the Maschio Angioino, meaning, simply "New Castle", thus distinguishing it from the older Castel dell'Ovo, the Egg Castle.

A sigh of relief went up from the landholding class when Ferrante died in after 28 years on the throne. The point of the treaty had been to warn the rest of Italy to the north not to take the Kingdom of Naples for granted. The French reappeared with designs on the throne of Naples. Under Ferrante's successor, Neapolitan resistance to the French was utterly ineffective and the French, under Charles VIII, took the city virtually unopposed; indeed, they were welcomed by most of the nobility, who sensed a chance to recoup their losses.

Their toadying didn't work. The French pillaged the city, anyway, and dispossessed a number of the nobles. Charles, however, suddenly found himself cut off: The Papal State, Milano, and Venice which had just let Charles pass through unhindered on the way to Naples suddenly formed an alliance behind and against him.

Charles had to fight his way back home, attempting along the way, and failing, to bribe the Pope into crowning him King of Naples. The jibe by historians is that the French brought two things back from their Italian campaign: France then tried something else: This would effectively give them both one less rival realm in the area, as well as squelch the heresy that it wasn't nice to carve up one's own cousins. Ferdinand went for it and even Machiavelli, himself, later said that Ferdinand had certainly needed no lessons from anyone in ruthless princemanship.

The pact of Granada was signed on 11 November ; the Kingdom was to be divided, with the capital, Naples, going to France. The French reentered Naples in July It now seemed, however, that both France and Spain had had their fingers crossed at the signing of the original treaty, so they had a war over it and Spain won. The Kingdom, intact, became a colony of Spain. Naples was now no longer the capital of its own realm. In a few year's time, with Charles V of Spain crowned Holy Roman Emperor, heir to the Caesars and Charlemagne, it would be part of an empire as it had been more than a thousand years earlier.

True, the East had fallen and what was left of Christian Empire was all in the West, but after 'West' meant something monumentally different in human history.

The Empire had shifted, spreading from Europe to the Americas and on to the Pacific. The age of Empires on which "the sun never sets" had arrived. T he T emple of V enus in B aia. One of the most interesting bits of architecture in the vast outdoor and underwater! It is directly adjacent on the west to the entrance to the small lovely port of modern Baia. The structure was built in the reign of Hadrian AD.

It offers striking evidence of the evolution that took place in Roman architecture during the Julio-Caludian period. There is a clear difference between this building, characterized by a high tambour the circular vertical part of the cupola with a circular internal plan and external octagonal one with large windows, and the elementary structure of other, earlier buildings in the area. The use of opus cementicium as the main binding ingredient had reached perfection; this is a mixture of stone chips and strong mortar that contained pozzolana a volcanic ash named for the town of Pozzuoli.

T his newer technology as well as an increasingly specialized workforce led to the construction of buildings where space was conceived of in a different and very modern way; mixtilinear combing both straight and curved lines forms of architecture started to become more widespread and were marked by bright spaces designed to be aesthetic and pleasing to the eye and not merely lived in.

The outer face is in brick, with large porticos of reticulatum ; inside, the walls were dressed with slabs of marble up to the impost of the windows and higher up with mosaic. The outside still shows traces of the original stone facing. The dome was formed by an umbrella vault; a part of the octagonal roof remains visible from the outside.

T he lower part of the building, on which other only partially visible buildings lean, has become difficult to interpret; this is due not just to the lowering of the ground level caused by seismic activity, but also due to the restoration designed to reinforce the structure at the beginning of the 20th century.

The thermal baths were connected to a structure in the rear and stretched along the slope of the hill. Caracciolo is an old and prominent Neapolitan surname. There are at least 50 bearers of that name in the current Naples phone book.

Indeed, the name has divided into various branches over the centuries"Caracciolo of here" and "Caracciolo of there," resulting in some very impressive listings in the directory. That is the longest one I see, although, without a title, Francesco Alberto Caracciolo di Torchiarolo" edges him out by a few letters. From the address in the phone book, he is my next-door neighbor, although I don't know why that should matter to me.

There are even four different streets named via Caracciolo in Naples: Caracciolo the T stands for Tristan, I think ; and the one that all Neapolitans think of when they hear the name "Caracciolo" Francesco portrait, above.

The splendid road that runs from Mergellina to Piazza Vittoria along the sea, fronting the Villa Comunale, thus, is named for Francesco Caracciolo , the Neapolitan admiral whose name is dramatically linked in history with the rise and fall of the Neapolitan Republic of and with the principal players in that episode: Besides the links in the previous sentence, other entries about this period include: Francesco Caracciolo was born January 18, of a noble Neapolitan family.

He entered the navy at a young age and fought with distinction with the Kingdom of Naples' ally, the British, in the American Revolutionary War. He also fought the Barbary pirates and against the French at Toulon.

In December of , the Neapolitan monarchy fled the capital in the face of the insurgent Neapolitan republican forces backed by the French army at the gates of the city. Caracciolo returned to Naples in January to take care of private matters and arrived in the city after the Republic had been declared.

His behavior at that point has remained the subject of speculation. Either he resented being snubbed by King Ferdinand, who had fled aboard Nelson's vessel and not Caracciolo's, or he was appalled at the cowardly flight, itself, or he was truly taken with the newly proclaimed Neapolitan Republic. Whatever the case, he took command of the naval forces of the new Republic.

In other words, he betrayed his king. He led the Republican navy against royalist Neapolitan and British naval forces for the brief life of the Republic, his last major engagement being an attack on the British flagship, Minerva, inflicting damage on that vessel. The Republic, however, was doomed by the withdrawal of French forces from Naples and by the arrival of the royalist Army of the Holy Faith under Cardinal Ruffo. His trial is a matter of record and takes place against the whole backdrop of deceit by which the Royalist forces actually retook the city.

The agreed to an armistice, promised safe passage to Republican defenders presumably including Caracciolo , and then put the Republicans on trial, anyway. There was never any doubt as to Caracciolo's fate. Queen Caroline had relayed to Nelson her wish that Caracciolo should hang, no matter what. Caracciolo was tried aboard a British ship, Foudroyant, by Neapolitan royalist officers and charged with high treason. He was not permitted to call witnesses in his defence. He was condemned to death by three votes to two.

He was not given the customary twenty-four hours for personal matters of the spirit. His request to be shot was denied and he was hanged from the yardarm of the Minerva on the morning of June 30, His body was weighted and thrown into the sea. One of the mainstays of modern Neapolitan mythology is that the body refused to sink, floating to the surface and eerily bobbing its way towards shore.

Indeed, there is even a painting showing King Ferdinand aboard his ship, aghast at the sight of the admiral's corpse floating alongside. Whatever the case, Caracciolo's body was retrieved from the sea and his remains now rest in the small church of Santa Maria della Catena in the Santa Lucia section of Naples photo, above. Except for occasional ceremonial use in civil life, such as getting a college diploma, or the electronic metaphor of "scrolling" on a computer screen, we don't much use scrolls anymore those rolls of paper with writing on them.

In some religious use, however, they are still prominent. The Scroll of the Law in Judaism is one that contains the Torah or the Pentateuch; it is bound by elaborate rollers befitting the high ceremonial occasion for which it is used. Generally speaking, scrolls started to be replaced by books under the Romans in the first century AD; by around AD, these two formats of "parchment media" were on a numerical par in Europe.

The spread of Christianity was important in the gradual, but irresistible, replacement of scrolls by books in Europe well before the year Books are easier to read, store, and transport. Indeed, it is impossible to imagine a modern church service with scrolls.

I'll take ten and go get coffee while you look! These were the so-called Exultet Rolls in southern Italy. The Exultet rolls were parchment scrolls containing text and music for this blessing. See notes at end for an additional comment on the musical notation. The scrolls were widely used in the 10th and 11th centuries. The Exultet rolls, however, were written top to bottom and contained text, musical notation and magnificent illustrations.

The illustrations were upside down with respect to the text so that they could be viewed properly by observers as the scroll unrolled from the ambo, an elevated lecturn, before them, while, at the same time, the deacon could view text and music properly from his side. The scrolls were a way of including the congregation in the service: It was an early version of a slide-show!

The very young may wish think of this as a Power Point presentation from someone with real power. It does bear emphasis, however, that the use of a scroll for the service was not merely and perhaps not even primarily a practical device.

It lent solemnity and magnificence to the occasion. The intoned Exultet text, itself, started in Latin, obviously:. Note from the indentations in the text that the text is upside down in relation to the illustration.

There then followed an extensive retelling not just of the life of Christ but of the world since Creation with appropriate illustrations on the scroll for various episodes, including Adam and Eve, the Flight from Egypt, the Crossing of the Red Sea, the Pillar of Fire, the Virgin and Child, the Crucifixion, Christ's descent into Hell, the Resurrected Christ, the Offering of the Candle, even the Praise of the Bees who provided wax to make the candle.

Illustrations and text also praised the Church or the Pope, and the Emperor or King. In that regard, the scrolls underwent changes form the 10th to the 12th century that reflected social changes.

There were two texts: Benevento was one of the great centers of Lombard culture in Italy; the Beneventan text is the older of the two and probably goes back to the eighth century. The later Franco-Roman text gradually replaced the earlier Beneventan one in the course of the 11th century as the authority of the Papacy grew in the south and Lombard power declined. As noted, the reading of the Exultet had a secular as well as religious function or, better, it fused the two by praising not just Church and Pope but also kings and emperors, past and present.

The scrolls seen even in the single image above have ornamental strips running on both sides of the text and illustrations. These strips contain a great number of miniature portraits. Scholars debate whether they were meant to represent real persons or whether they were "generic portraiture," that is, tributes to whoever happened to be king or emperor at the time and whose name would then be inserted between lines of nearby text to remind the deacon what name to praise.

Indeed, there are numerous palimpsest patches on the scrolls where such interlinear names have been scratched away and other names written over.

The scholarly consensus seems to be that of Ladner: There are extant fragments of scrolls in various museums and libraries in Italy, including the Vatican Library and the Diocese Museum of Salerno. These scrolls continue to be of great interest to students of medieval art, liturgy, and music. Ladner also notes the relatively late use of scrolls in places other than southern Italy for uses other than the Exultet: These rolls like the Exultet rolls are illustrated and were meant to be read publicly, but otherwise there seems to be no connetction with the Exultet rolls.

It is not clear at least to me from sources, but it seems to me that the deacon, the person reciting the Excultet, must then have stood below the ambo with the viewers such that they were all looking at the same thing from the same vantage point while the scroll was unrolled from above by an assistant. As a point of clarification, when we say that the scrolls contained text and music, the musical notation was in the form of "neumes," the forerunner of modern musical 5 line staff notation.

Neumes generally did not indicate exact pitch but, rather, were markings above the text to remind the singer which direction the melody was to move and indicate something about the rhythm or how long to hold out a note. Neumes were a mnemonic device to help someone who already knew the melody. In the illustration above, the faint interlinear markings are the neumes. The Exultet in Southern Italy. Oxford University Press, New York, Princeton, London, The Hague, It was built at the end of the 13th century at the decree of Charles I of Angio near the basilica of Santa Restituta of which more, below , a sixth-century church that was incorporated into the Gothic architecture of the later cathedral, itself.

The cathedral has been restored numerous times over the centuries. It was redone after the earthquake of and again in Its marble portals, however, are original. Inside, the cathedral is meters long and in the form of a Latin Cross, with three naves, divided by sixteen pillars that form Gothic arches and incorporate granite columns.

The ceiling of the central nave is of wood and bears five paintings by various artists: High on the Walls of the central nave and the transept are paintings of saints done by Luca Giordano and his school; at the base of the pillars are busts of the first 16 bishops of the city of Naples.

Above the door of the main entrance are monuments to Charles I of Angio d. These monuments are the work of Domenico Fontana; viceroy Enrico Guzman Count of Olivares ordered them built in because the original tombs of those nobles had been destroyed.

The side chapels are all quite interesting, containing a collection of funerary items, sculpture, frescoes and canvases that represent an exhaustive overview of figurative art from to In the nave, the fourth chapel is the Brancaccio chapel; just beyond that you enter into the oldest part of the Cathedral, the Santa Restituta basilica, one of the most interesting examples of paleo-Christian Naples.

Originally, it was a church in its own right, built in the 6th century. Its present three aisles divided by 27 antique columns are what is left of the original church after it was incorporated into the body of the massive new cathedral in the 13th century.

They say that Santa Restituta was a young African woman, who, because she was a Christian, was abandoned to the sea on a boat set ablaze. The fire, however, died out and she was miraculously able to put ashore on the island of Ischia. In the eighth century her remains were brought to the church in Naples that then took her name. The baptistery of San Giovanni in fonte beneath Santa Restituta claims to be the oldest in Western Christendom and contains a number of mosaics of extreme interest.

See this link for a graphic display of the mosaics. In the nave, the fourth chapel is the Brancaccio chapel; just beyond that you enter into the oldest part of the Cathedral, the Santa Restituta basilica, one of the most interesting examples of paleo Christian Naples. Opposite the Gothic Santa Restituta is the Baroque chapel of San Gennaro del Tesoro, built between and to fulfill the vow made by the people of Naples on January 13, , after a plague.

The bust of Januarius is precious. It preserves part of the saint's skull as well as the vial of blood that is believed by the faithful to liquefy miraculously twice a year. This occurs in May and September, repeating the miracle that happened for the first time during the reign of the Emperor Constantine, when the remains of Januarius were moved to Naples from Pozzuoli, the site of his martyrdom on September 19, The expectation by the populace of the yearly occurrence of the "Miracle of San Gennaro" remains one the most fascinating manifestations of faith in all of Christendom.

Archaeological work done around the the Duomo since the s has brought to light a number of Greek, Roman and medieval items of interest. Traces of four 'city blocks' have been found, formed by the intersecting upper and central decumani the east-west streets of Greek Neapolis and the stenopoi, or north-south cross-streets. A small temple has been uncovered on the ancient stenopoi corresponding to modern-day via Duomo.

The blocks around the Cathedral were clearly incorporated into later Roman Imperial road-work within the city. With the coming of Christianity, a number of Christian churches started to appear in the area, but many of the smaller ones from before the turn of the millennium were torn down to make way for the Cathedral.

There are many tombs, crypts and catacombs from ancient times in Naples. Such repositories of intact human remains may give the impression that cremation was not practiced at the time of the Greeks and Romans. That is not the case. Cremation in the days of ancient Greece and Rome was common and did not fall out of favor in Italy and elsewhere in Europe until well into the Christian era.

In ancient Rome, both burial and cremation were common, and the choice was apparently a social one; the upper classes preferred cremation. Columbaria could be both below and above ground, or even have both an underground and a surface part. The name "columbarium" comes from the Latin word for "pigeon" since the structures, indeed, looked like dovecots, even down to the "pigeon holes" for the urns.

A mausoleum, on the other hand, is an above-ground edifice built as a memorial to the deceased and containing the remains in whatever form cremated, skeletal, mummified, etc. The word mausoleum comes from the grand tomb of Mausolus of Caria a satrapy of ancient Persia ; it was erected by his queen Aremesia in the middle of the 4th c.

I have seen the Fescina photo, above called both a columbarium and a mausoleum. Dated to the 1st c. BC, it is a free standing column topped by a pyramid-like hexagonal cusp; it is located in the necropolis of via Brindisi in the town of Quarto, near Naples. This type of architecture is particular; the Fescina is the only example of it in the Campi Flegrei or the entire Campania region of Italy, at the very least.

This kind of structure was, however, widespread in the Hellenic Age in the eastern Mediterranean, which has led to some speculation that the family that built this one was from Asia Minor. There are a few other pyramid mausoleums in Italy, most notably the tomb of Gaius Cestius in Rome, built in c. That one is large 37 meters high and is a true pyramid; it was almost certainly modeled on Egyptian pyramid tombs during the so-called "Cleopatra craze" in ancient Rome. It seems to have little in common with the Fescina.

I am tempted to say that the Fescina may be unique in all of Italy, but I would be happy for some clarification. There are also three reclining couch-beds known as triclinia; they are of brick and were intended for ritual banquets. Two slit openings higher up allowed light and air to enter.

The part visible above ground appears to be about 6 7 meters high. The area was excavated in the s and 80s. The Fescina was part of a larger Necropolis. Roman brick work that placed the pointed ends of diamond-shaped bricks into cement such that the square bases formed a diagonal pattern on the surface of a wall. The pattern of mortar lines resembled a net or reticulatum in Latin.

The word is a dialect variation of fascina accent on the second syllable. The English term is "fascine" i. It is a cognate of fascio, a bundle or sheaf of grain, which then became a political symbol and has given us the term Fascism.

T he first architectural results of the industrial revolution sprang up in Britain in the middle of the 19th century: By using iron, these architects sought to reconcile the split in the Victorian personality, which viewed such industrial material as the substance of engines to power modern society with, perhaps, but hardly the stuff of Architecture with a capital A—the discipline of designing museums, hotels, universities and other such places for the genteel to gather.

S uch use of glass and iron, however, was to revolutionize architecture and eventually lead to the first steel-framed skyscrapers of the Chicago architects before the century was out. High vaulted glass and iron domes, governed by their own new architectural aesthetics, characterized a number of structures built in Europe in the last decades of the nineteenth century.

It was inaugurated in , and named for Umberto I, who was king of Italy from until when he died at the hands of an assassin [see this entry on an earlier attempted assassination of Umberto]. There is a slightly earlier, smaller example of the same type of architecture in Naples, the Galleria Principe di Napoli. T he idea behind the Risanamento 'resanitizing' or 'making healthy again' of Naples in the s and 90s was to clear large sections of the city that for centuries had been nests of squalid overcrowding and disease; then rational construction could take place.

The wide boulevard known as Corso Umberto or the Rettifilo, the 'straight line' running from Piazza della Borsa all the way to the main train station at Piazza Garibaldi was one result of this effort, as was the construction of a new seaside road and 20 blocks of new buildings at Santa Lucia.

The Galleria Umberto was another. T here was a need to renew the area across from San Carlo known as Santa Brigida, and four designs were submitted. One by Emanuele Rocco was chosen. His plan left in place a number of historic buildings that others would have torn down, yet presented a high and spacious cross-shaped mall, a truly cathedralesque affair surmounted by a great glass dome braced by 16 metal ribs.

Of the four glass-vaulted wings, one fronts on via Toledo via Roma , still the main downtown thoroughfare, and another opens onto the San Carlo Theater, framed like a splendid proscenium by the portals of the gallery photo, below. The Galleria Umberto was based on the design of the gallery in Milan completed in ; yet, it was a more aesthetic fusion of the industrial glass and metal of the upper part and the masonry below, which, itself, is a spectacular collage of Renaissance and Baroque ornamentation, tapering off to clean smoothness of marble at the ground concourse.

Other architects involved were Ernesto Mauro and Antonio Curri, the latter being primarily behind the intensely ornate decorative and symbolic designs that cover surfaces in the Galleria. He also worked on restoring the interior of the San Carlo theater as well as the delightful interior of the nearby Gambrinus Caffè. T he Gallery was built to stimulate commerce and to be a symbol of a city reborn. It still contains numerous cafès, businesses, book and record shops, and fashionable stores.

Once it held theaters and restaurants as well, and was, indeed, the sitting room of bourgeois Naples. One such theater was the fabled Salone Margherita , home of the l ocal version of the café-chantant. It was below the main concourse with a stairway leading down to it and a separate entrance from street-level outside.

It was closed for many years and is currently being rebuilt. The fate of the Galleria Umberto has come to be somewhat of a metaphor of Naples, meaning that there are good times and bad, periods of splendor as well as decay. Among its many ups and downs is even the fact that it was the target of aerial bombardment by a dirigible in the First World War! These days, you can still —and should still— marvel at the architecture, its deceptive orderliness as it moves and shifts like Proteus from one detail to the next.

Yet, the Galleria also lets you become for a moment the center of an equally fascinating bit of flesh-and-blood architecture: Perhaps they are well-dressed, perhaps disheveled; the weird as well as the mundane, the casual and the poised. From the perfectly nondescript to those who look like extras in some bizarre film, they all have their own reasons for being drawn to what is still a most remarkable structure.

The horses in Naples are reared up; they look wild and as yet untamed, while the horse tamers, themselves, are as naked as the horses. It all looks savage and somewhat un Italian,lets say Russian and steppe-like at least compared to other stately and totally tamed equestrian statues in the city the two mounted versions of Charles III and his son, Ferdinand I in the square on the west side of the same royal palace, for example. But the inspiration is very classical; the statues are variations of the colossal Roman marbles of Castor and Pollux, the Heavenly Twins, posed with their steeds at the fountain on the Quirinal Hill in Rome.

The Horse Tamers in Naples were cleaned and restored in which, incidentally, is the last time I have seen that particular entrance to the gardens open. There was a reason for the good relations between Imperial Russia and the Kingdom of Naples in the s that impelled the czar to give away two of his prize monuments.

For a while, then, the Russian and Turks put aside their centuries of dispute to make common cause against the French. The immediate goal was to dislodge the French-supported Neapolitan Republic proclaimed in January, and reinstall the Bourbon monarchy to the throne of Naples.

A body of five- or six-hundred Russians and Turks landed on the Adriatic coast, having crossed from Corfu, to assist the Royalist forces under Ruffo in retaking the kingdom. They were successful, and the Russian and Turkish commanders both signed the armistice agreement by which the Bourbons in this case, King Ferdinand I were restored in Naples.

One grandfather had helped another, and both grandsons were now still absolute monarchs, still resisting the gathering forces of reform at mid-century. That is worth a couple of statues. In his Decameron, Giovanni Boccaccio devoted an entire tale Second Day, Tale Four to the adventures of one Landolfo Rufolo, a contemporary of his from the town of Ravello on the "delightful He then "lived in honorable estate" until his death.

Poster of first Wagner Festival, As if from Snoopy's Dark-and-Stormy-Night school of great coincidences, just a few years earlier c. Wagner visited the Villa Rufolo in and was so inspired by the beauty of the garden that he declared, "Here is the enchanted garden of Klingsor.

And what were Mommy and Daddy von Eschenbach thinking when they named their kid "Wolfram," a word that means "tungsten" in German? And how would young Tungsten have rated Wagner? Say, do you guys know anything by Hildegard von Bingen? Alas, we may never know the answer to some of these questions, but see how it all ties together? Wagner apparently rode up to the Villa Rufolo from Amalfi on a mule. What did mules ever do to God?!

Wagner was a notorious deadbeat and left an unpaid tab at the Palumbo Hotel, but, as it turned out 70 years later , more than made up for it by transforming the villa and all of Ravello into a money magnet.

Ravello held its first Wagner music festival in The yearly affair has since grown in scope and continues to attract hordes of music lovers and performers of world renown every year. The restoration of the villa, itself, was in the hands of Michele Ruggiero, a gentleman who then took over the excavations at Pompeii. Significant parts of the original villa are still intact, including the main tower and intriguing Norman-Arab columns photo, right along a passageway through the villa and to the back of the property where the outdoor concerts are held.

The stage is set up at feet over the slope and sea looking due east along the folds of the mountain range of the Amalfi coast. The view is stunning. I t is proverbial that there is something universal about humor, yet, nothing translates with more difficulty from one culture to another than film comedy.

Once films started to speak, the rules changed, which is why highly verbal comics such as Groucho Marx are so difficult to render into another language. A pie in the face, a prat fall, or a piano falling downstairs cross cultural and language barriers much easier than trying to translate, "Bernstein is out in the corridor waxing wroth! Well, tell him to get in here and let Roth wax himself for a while! True, he is often full of the verbal dexterity that only native speakers of Italian can appreciate, yet his flights of outrageous language are so often combined with pure visual humor that he is easily one of the most accessible of all film comics, language and culture notwithstanding.

His early career started after WW I in vaudeville and expanded into films. He made 85 of them in all. Some of them, of course, are silly potboilers, fun but forgettable. Others are "art," the kind you wind up admiring, but still puzzling over and studying in History of Cinema classes, such as his brilliant work in Uccellacci ed uccellini lit. Others, the most memorable ones, have him in the role of the true clown, the little man down on his luck, just trying to make it through another day.

There is this poignancy in Guardie e Ladri Cops and Robbers. I have a blank check! But most Italians knew right from the start what it took critics decades to figure out, and now through the pleasant little time-machine known as television, we can all see why.

The title has to do with the smorfia , the tradition of interpreting dreams, of associating numbers with certain things in dreams and then playing those numbers in the lottery.

The presumption is that someone on "the other side" is giving you a hot tip. Number 47 in the Smorfia is Dead Man Talking, so if you have a dream in which you are conversing with, say, one of your dearly departed, 47 is one number you should play. Unfortunately, you need at least three "hits" to have any chance of making real money.

That's three friends in very high places—perhaps too much to ask in any one week. T he film was made in and is a loose adaptation of a stage comedy of the same name by Roman playwright, Ettore Petrolini with some of Moliere's The Miser thrown in. They drug him and cart him away to a Stygian landscape replete with fumaroles and other Dantean special effects; when he comes to his senses, those who were his friends in life are standing around in bed sheets and laurel wreaths, moaning and otherwise impersonating characters whom you might expect to meet in the doom and gloom antechamber of the hereafter.

I won't spoil the rest of the film for you, but I remember being taken with the set for the scene where he wakes up: It turns out that it was filmed on location in Naples—right outside of Naples, really, in the Solfatara, a very active and bubbling sulfur pit.

It is located in the area known as the Campi Flegrei. Indeed, Petronius, in The Satyricon reminds us…. S trabo 66 B. T he Solfatara is, at present, a protected nature reserve open to tourism. It is, indeed, at the "bottom of a cavern"—a large crater of volcanic origin and one that is still very active, geologically. In its long history, the Solfatara has suffered from benign neglect as well as commercial exploitation, having been mined for is alum and chalk as well as serving as a source for mineral water with reputed medicinal value.

Its value as a scientific station for the study of the geologically very interesting activity in the area started in when the property was purchased by the De Luca family, which included Francesco De Luca, a physicist. His scientific descriptions of the area, the mineral content of the soil and waters, etc. The area was officially opened to visitors in but had long been—bound as it is to Greek and Roman Mythology—a stop on the so-called "Grand Tour". T here have been a number of recent documentaries on Italian national TV about the Solfatara.

They refer to the site as an "active volcano" and have used it—with nearby Vesuvius, of course—as a point of departure to discuss the geology of the entire Bay of Naples. I have heard that the pazzariello still exists, but I have never seen one except in a period re-enactment of the Naples of days gone by.

Indeed, in April , RAI, the Italian state radio, ran a short program called "The Last Pazzariello of Naples" in which they went to a hospital in the Spanish Quarters and talked to Michele Lauri, born in , the gentleman purported to be the last of his kind except, as I say, in re-enactments.

For many centuries, before mass printing and then electronics made it so much easier to spread the word, there was a profession called "town crier" or some variation thereof—a person paid to walk around and shout out the news of the day and also get in a few ads for local merchants.

The pazzariello was that person in Naples. Typically, he dressed in mock military garb—a homemade uniform with bizarre medals, epaulets and a diagonal sash across the chest.

He wore a fancy French Bourbon tricorner hat, usually with the points at front and back instead of on the side and carried a large baton. He looked perhaps more like a circus ringmaster than a general, but at least it was conspicuous. The pazzariello from the Neapolitan verb pazziare —to joke was usually accompanied by a small band of at least a flautist and a bass-drum. He paraded around the streets and announced that a new shop was opening, or that this or that shop was almost giving away merchandise, so hurry, hurry, hurry—or that so-and-so had lost a wedding ring and would the finder please have it in his heart to return it.

He told a few jokes, rhymed a few couplets, and there were also the obligatory bits of gossip and anti-establishment comments. He and his small entourage picked up the few coins that people tossed their way. If the pazzariello is familiar at all to those outside of Italy, it is probably through the film, L'oro di Napoli The Gold of Naples , directed by Vittorio De Sica The film consists of five episodes six in the US release based on those found in the book of the same name by Giuseppe Marotta Users are invited to take a free visual quiz via text links and display ads.

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The title is meant to be echoic of the sound made by a trumpet fanfare, as in Roman poet Quintus Ennius' line, "At tuba terribili sonitu taratantara dixit" - "But the trumpet sounded with its terrible taratantara", the onomatopoeia usually left untranslated. She brought with her a young lover and went through a series of others in a period that is one of the most confusing in the confusing history of Naples. Nicola alla Carita S. It now seems that Alfredo Villa, the Italian-Swiss owner of a company called Brainspark has agreed to buy the Zoo and Edenladia property and pump enough money into it to bring the whole leisure park back to life. E Click on image for a sample article from letter E. We can take the last years or so because in geologic terms that is but a heart-beat. I've seen that one. Illustrations and text also praised the Church or the Pope, and the Emperor or King. This website used to be the Around Naples Encyclopedia.

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Giovanni in fonte S. The horses in Naples are reared up; they look wild and as yet untamed, while the horse tamers, themselves, are as naked as the horses. Nicholas in Naples S. I have seen the Fescina photo, above called both a columbarium and a mausoleum.

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