Galleria Borghese and the Fountains of Villa d’Este

Gallery Borghese scheduled at 9. If you aren’t there on time, too bad. They don’t let you in. It’s rush hour and 5 trains pass before we can board; they really pack ‘em in.
galleria borghese
In the crush my hubby is pickpocketed. We guess the thief had dry eyes,sensitive skin and an upset stomach since he got eye drops, tums and sun screen. Hahaha. We were warned. All valuables carried under our clothes.

1 berniniWe are very late so we run, literally, through the park, arriving just in time.

Hubby is bored, and the paintings aren’t really to my taste either but the sculpture is fabulous. I’m a new Bernini convert.

I took a picture of a postcard of the rape of Proserpine. You can’t really see the detail but his eye is pushed sideways by her hand and if you look closely, you will see that his fingers dimple her fanny where he’s clutching her. This in marble!

There is also an Apollo and Daphne – I love that legend: she turned into a tree to prevent the god from raping her; Bernini sculpts her fingertips into leaves. And a David – so young and determined that I can imagine him with his tongue out the side of his mouth. Real people made in stone. Fascinating.

Walk back through the park – guy playing accordion. Not my favorite instrument but he plays Mozart. Hubby complains the guy knows only one tune, but then he changes so we give him a tip.

cloudy window

Next stop Villa d’Este of the famous fountains. Getting there was a change from feet: a nice long metro, then a bus ride through small towns and past dusty green olive groves. (Click on the thumbnail if you want to see it full sized.)olive trees

The Villa of Water! Because the fountains are gravity fed (technology limited in the 1600’s when it was built), the villa is placed on a hill and looks out over the huge garden. stairs

Laid out under the sky are myriad water delights: pools, fountains, spouts. It’s so cool, not in the modern sense, although it is that, but in temperature. I imagine it in summer when it’s really hot. Oh, come on up to my villa. We’ll eat grapes.

Below is a slideshow of some of the delights of this garden. I loved the curving wall running with water along a staircase. Some hilarious faces spouting water   — the woman with the “pipe”, a fern mustache, fellows wearing dumbo or donkey ears. Then there’s the man climbing out of the pool.

After all our city ventures, this was magical.

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  1. I’m a Bernini fan too. What a beautiful place. Thanks for sharing it!

  2. Terri says:

    Linda, Can you send me your email again. I seem to have lost it. I want to send you something…

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