02 Dec Florence and its “genius loci”
December appeared at the gates of Florence.
The city is quiet, but it is ready to revive in the heat of Christmas when the flow of people flood alleys, streets and squares. In this interregnum, the true face of Florence is revealed and we can finally discover something more intimate of her.
The beautiful Florence is an ordered weaving of rustic and austere streets on which, the impressive buildings project their shadows.
With their imposing rough and irregular stones, these houses seem impregnable fortresses, closed by heavy screened windows and surmounted by medieval merlons or Renaissance cornices.
They would seem more designed to reject people than to invite them to enter.
The masterpieces of Ghiberti and Brunelleschi, Botticelli and Leonardo, Donatello and Michelangelo shine in the enclosed spaces of these places – churches and palaces.
It is in the intimacy of these places – churches and palaces – that the thoughts of Dante and Boccaccio, Galileo and Macchiavelli were expressed.
Names of a glorious time, engraved forever in the Florentine soil.
The names of a glorious time that the breeze makes run through the fast lanes that rise just beyond the river. We then follow them, following the gray walls set between fields of olive trees and rows of cypresses.
At slow pace, they lead us to the height where we can breathe calm and finally reconcile with the “genius loci“, the genius of places.