Roman bronze statues discovered at San Casciano dei Bagni in Tuscany
Tuscany
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2M ago
A few days ago in November 2022, a dramatic discovery was made at the excavations being undertaken at the Tuscan town of San Casciano dei Bagni in the province of Sienna. In fact, the largest deposit of bronze statues from the Etruscan and Roman ages ever discovered in Italy and one of the most significant in the whole of the Mediterranean has been found. At least 24 bronze statues, each roughly ..read more
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Excellent 2022 Chianti wine vintage coming up
Tuscany
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6M ago
 Today we had another heavy rainfall here in Chianti, just 3-5 weeks before the Chianti vendemmia is due to begin, exactly when it was wished for. Already in June we knew that vines planted in Chianti indicated a bumper crop of grapes after five years of decline. Then the drought hit and growers became increasingly nervous. At first they hoped for a small but concentrated Chianti grape harvest ..read more
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Things to see in Lucca
Tuscany
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7M ago
Last Saturday, when temperatures were down slightly, I paid a visit to Lucca, that lovely walled town in the west of Tuscany. I had forgotten just how pleasant Lucca is for a stroll - so compact, beautiful, full of things to see and virtually free of motorised vehicles within the walls. Partial view of Lucca within the walls.The main things to see in Lucca are described on the Lucca Tourist ..read more
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Calcio Storico Fiorentino 2022
Tuscany
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8M ago
The 2022 Calcio Storico Fiorentino, that brutal competition among four Florentine teams, begins tomorrow, Friday 10 June 2022, with the semifinals taking place on Friday 10 June and Saturday 11 June instead of on Saturday and Sunday because a national referendum takes place held on Sunday the 12 June. The final takes place as always on 24 June 2022.I guess almost every one has heard of the Calcio ..read more
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Open day of the villas and gardens in Florence 22 May 2022
Tuscany
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9M ago
Those of you who are enthusiasts for the villas and gardens of Tuscany have a great opportunity on Sunday 22 May 2022 to visit a great many of the villas and gardens that are usually closed to the public. Entrance is free. I can't emphasise enough what a wonderful opportunity this is to see some splendid architecture and historical gardens. Palazzo Corsini and its garden in Florence Open ..read more
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Donatello exhibition in Florence
Tuscany
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9M ago
This year's block-buster exhibition in Florence is dedicated to Donatello and goes under the not unjustifiably immodest name of "Donatello, the Renaissance." As for some of the previous exhibitions at the Palazzo Strozzi, the Donatello show is partially housed also at the Bargello (separate ticket required). Opening hours are 10 am to 8 pm every day except Thursday when the doors remain open ..read more
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When do the poppies appear in Tuscany?
Tuscany
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9M ago
Wild flowers in Tuscany. This is the time of year when many readers ask me, "When do the poppies appear in Tuscany?" Of course, the exact time varies a bit from year to year, but right now, the end of April and beginning of May, is the time to see poppies and many, many other species of wild flowers in Tuscany. This is basically because April is one of the two rainy months in Tuscany (the ..read more
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Anglo-American Florence since the mid 19th Century
Tuscany
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9M ago
Not everyone realises just how small Florence was in the mid-19th Century compared with today. The city walls were still intact. The latter weren't demolished until between 1865 and 1871 when Florence was provisional capital of Italy. I recently came across a provincial map dating from 1841. To the NE, Florence more or less ended just behind the railway station!Florence in 1841During the second ..read more
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Palazzo Chigi Zondadari in Sienna opens to the public
Tuscany
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9M ago
Everyone visiting the main piazza of Sienna, especially during the Palio, will have seen, although perhaps not particularly noticed, the Palazzo Chigi Zondadari which is located on the higher side of the Piazza del Campo and provides the perfect view of the Palio. However, very few know that the interior of this palazzo is spectacularly decorated and furnished.From 8 May 2022, the Palazzo Chigi ..read more
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Who was Mona Lisa?
Tuscany
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9M ago
 "Mona Lisa" by Leonardo da VinciThe question of who was Mona Lisa has occupied scholars for at least 150 years, more or less since Leonardo da Vinci's painting, known in English as "Mona Lisa", became the most famous painting on the planet - before that time it was well-known but not as highly esteemed as it became. The subject of the painting is widely believed to be Lisa del Giocondo who was a ..read more
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