5 Museums and A Great Meal in Florence

last supperSaw 5 museums today…plus a Last Supper. We start at Cenacola by an artist unknown to me: Il Perugia. Very calm.
Piedra Dura
The museum of hard stones. Inlays of colored stone on tables, cabinets, doors. Fantastic.

Upstairs, the “machines” but the work was mostly manually. I was surprised by the exact fit of the pieces. B is astounded by the whole operation. But then, the Roman empire was built by hand (and slave). Buildings, roads, everything without machinery.
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Next stop: the Bargello then the antique palace (Palazzo Vecchio). Lots of stairs – they certainly made the ceilings high.

The Bargello had a big courtyard with crests all over the walls and painted ceilings but was kind of empty.

The Palazzo now serves as the city hall, very grand with matchless ceilings.

Today instead of sore feet, I have a crick in my neck.ceiling
At Lunch they were playing 70’s, 80’s songs. I had bowl of olives in oil w/ lots of spice. A 4 cheeses pizza and a mixed salad. Such a feast. Of course it was 1:45 and we hadn’t eaten all day.
medieval homeAfter lunch we rush off to Palazzo Davanzati, the medieval home of a rich man in about 1300. We arrived 20 mins before closing but the lady said, “Chiuso.” I was able to say in Italian – no, there are 20 minutes left. After some argument (thank goodness for my classes), she let us in. That moment made all the study worthwhile because it was fantastic. Full disclosure: I love the medieval period more than the Renaissance.
latrine
It had a butler’s shaft, for hoisting water I think. Also a toilet, a hole down the wall, but with a wooden lid w/ a handle. Never saw a lid before – either they all have been lost or the Italians were more refined.

The walls were papered, well, ok, plastered and painted with a repeating motif. Probably lasted better than the wall paper jobs I’ve done. A line of pipes ran down the walls – I read that the kitchen was on the top floor to keep the place cooler in Italian heat, so they must have been for drainage.
medieval window

Finally, The Uffizi. For me, like the Prado in Spain, just too much, and lots that I didn’t care for. The early stuff – 13-1400’s was to my taste. Love the flat hat-like halos in gold. The triptychs w/ the pointed tops. Then a couple of Rembrandts. B remarks how many of the artists didn’t know how to use light – but Caravaggio did. Too many people, endless rooms and no photos.
Our Uffizi joke: Most Roman statues are missing their penises. We saw a statue of Dionysus leaning back, laughing at a bunch of grapes. At his feet, a panther, mouth wide open, gazing up at Dionysius. Brian makes up a dialogue…”Hey, you, Dionysius, better give me some grapes or I’ll bite your penis off. Oops, too late.”

Firenze4After the museums, we went to the main plaza, chock full of statues. My favorite, since the first time I was in Florence, is Perseus with the head of Medusa. Also the Baptistry is here with its famous door.
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The Florentines evidently have a great sense of humor: many of the street directions have been “fixed up.”
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Tomorrow we go off into the countryside. Hooray, I’m about museum’ed out!

Comments

  1. It’s all so amazing. Some day I need to get to Europe to see the sights myself, but now I’m thinking that I’d have to go into physical training first to handle all the stairs and ceilings 🙂

  2. Julie Hayhurst says:

    Loved the pictures and stories… and have to give you credit for speaking your mind with the italian lady at the Palazzo Davanzati 🙂 you go girl…

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