No &B, so we trudge up the outdoor stairs to get coffee and pastry on via Gramsci, then head down to the Archeological Museum. Yes, there's one in Fiesole, too. It's pretty impressive in terms of the details they have unearthed. Excavations are from Prehistoric, Etruscan, Roman and Medieval time. Medieval is almost modern in this area ! The partially restored Roman theatre dates back to the 1st century BC. Love seeing things older than me !
The bones in one guy's grave tell a lot about his life: he was 1.8m tall, taller than average; his arm joints indicate he probably swung his axe too much because they are severly worn out; he was 50-60 years old when he died; he had four major injuries, and his bones indicate he was very healthy and strong. Amazing analysis!
There are remains of Etruscan, Roman, and Longobard buildings, baths, theater, and necropolis. Also, remnants of their various pottery, glass, and metal objects. Bronze was used for forming miniature (3-4" tall) people, and body parts (leg, foot) that they wanted healed. The intricate and delicate glassware is amazing both in it's crafting and preservation
We hiked the entire perimeter of Fiesole, much of it up hill. It provides a great vista of Florence and the hills beyond. Then we took a bus ride down into Florence. It really is a grand city and we roamed through several streets and did some people watching. A trio of violin, guitar, and bass violin played old populars in the Piazza Repubblica. They drew a crowd of young and old. Beautiful sunny day .
Boboli Gardens at the Pitti Palace was our afternoon attraction along with the Porcelain Gallery and the Argenti Treasures and the "modern" art gallery. The Medici family built the Pitti outside Florence on the south side of the Arno River. Their fabulous wealth allowed them to acquire the land for the Palace and the Gardens. The Argenti shows off many of their personal treasures of art and jewelry.Really equals the English Crown jewels.
A 9:00 concert at Saint Stephen's church is our evening entertainment. A pianist (Sara Danti) and flautist (Laura Pistoi) performed for an hour, a program including sonatas by Bach, Debussy, Kohler, Donizetti, and Gali. I recognized only the Debussey "Clare de Lune". The performers were a great team. It was a real treat. We had seats immediately next to the pianist so we could monitor her fingering for errors!
Our bus ride returned us home to Fiesole by 11:00pm. We're pretty tired.
Friday, March 9, 2012
Fiesole &Florence Day Two