Spending the summer in Florence means experiencing the beautiful season immersed in poetry, between scenic terraces overlooking the city and enchanted gardens a stone's throw from the historic center, perhaps cooling off with a good ice cream. June begins with the celebration of one of the most important holidays not only for Florentines, but for the entire peninsula: the Anniversary of the Republic.
“"Here in Palazzo dei Gaddi it is a tradition that in the years 1638 and 1639 John Milton lived here, finding the Italy of the Classics in Florence"; so reads the plaque in the Palazzo dei Gaddi. The building that stands in Via del Giglio, housed the author of the immortal "Paradise Lost" who spent some time in our city to confront the Italian authors he venerated: from Dante to Petrarca, from Bembo to Tasso.
“He is no more. As reft of breath The heedless body lay at last On whom such boundless hopes were cast, Immobile in the calm of death. So, by the tidings, in amaze The earth is held, and with her gaze
The parting hour doth mutely scan Of this great spirit; if again Upon the dust of her wide plain, All blood-besprinkled, ever can The footfall of a mortal show Like unto his, she doth not know.”
These are the first two stanzas of "The Fifth of May", Alessandro Manzoni’s ode to the death of Napoleon, which took place on May 5 1821, during his exile on the island of Sant'Elena. That of the author of "I promessi sposi" is a figure inextricably linked to our Florence. A few years later, in fact, Manzoni will indicate the Florentine dialect as the official linguistic model for the Unified Italy with the famous "rinsing of clothes in the Arno".
Florence is easy to fall in love with: its golden riversides at sunset, its breathtaking views from Boboli or Piazzale Michelangelo. From the immortal artistic tradition that was born and taught here to the whole world, up to the most contemporary contaminations that vibrate in an increasingly creative and international historical center, not even the Hollywood stars seem immune to the charm of the Tuscan capital. And from the red carpet to the Oltrarno workshops, it’s a short trip!
As in many other countries of the world, in Italy, March 8 is a day to celebrate Women's Day and those who have decided to study Italian in Florence, will notice: with spring at our doorstep, the city is literally invaded by the scent of mimosa flowers. Despite Women's Day being an international holiday, the gift of mimosa flowers remains an all-Italian custom that dates back to the immediate post-war period. Let's find out how it was born!