Buon Onomastico or, the Serendipity of Italian

What is an Onomastico, and Why is it Important? “Buon onomastico!” read a Facebook post a few years back on the page of a cherished Italian cousin, followed by several people of the same first name who were tagged with well-wishes and congratulations (auguri). I had no idea what an onomastico was, but I was…

22 Terms To Better Appreciate Italian Art and Architecture

Terms curated and defined by Alexandra Kiely, A Scholarly Skater My love for Italian art and architecture is undeniable, but also, untrained. Often I have felt guilty at the blessings of being exposed to the beauty of Italian museums and buildings without the knowledge to better appreciate it all. Thus, I decided to “home school” myself…

A Home for the Italian Language

On the outskirts of Florence sits Villa di Castello, country home of Cosimo I de’ Medici (1519-1574), Grand Duke of Tuscany.  Sandro Botticelli’s The Birth of Venus and Primavera once adorned the walls of the villa, and Castello’s elaborate garden — renowned throughout Europe — influenced other famous gardens including Florence’s Boboli Gardens. Villa di Castello has seen…

Churches of Florence: A Love Story, Part Two

“I never weary of great churches. It is my favorite kind of mountain scenery. Mankind was never so happily inspired as when it made a cathedral.” — Robert Louis Stevenson Like many who have fallen for Italy, I too never weary of churches. I am not shy in professing my love of all things Duomo, but, a dire…

Churches of Florence: A Love Story, Part One

“I never weary of great churches. It is my favorite kind of mountain scenery. Mankind was never so happily inspired as when it made a cathedral.” — Robert Louis Stevenson Like many who have fallen for Italy, I too never weary of churches. I am not shy in professing my love of all things Duomo, but, a dire…

Ghosts of Florence and Other Spooky Spots in Italy

Although I have thankfully never encountered a ghost during my late-night/early-morning wanderings, in a country as old as Italy they are bound to be there, lurking in shadowed vicoli (alleys), peering down from finestre (windows), nascosto in piena vista (hiding in plain sight). Such is the case for these popular spots for visitors to Florence…perhaps you’ve “haunted” some…