'All roads lead to Rome'...
and so the Red Cardinals eventually found their way..
walking in the streets of the ancients...
by the (sadly neglected) Mausoleum of Augustus, arguably the greatest of the emperors,
who died exactly 2,000 years ago, on August 19, in 14AD
Loved the Ara Pacis, the Augustine Altar of Peace in its new glass temple (2006)
By the Spanish steps, we stumbled on the Keats/Shelley house museum and
sat on their terrace musing about the Grecian Urn...
Keats passed away in this little room..
Shelley contemplating Prometheus...
Of course, the Vatican Museum was a priority, and what a day of crowds and excitement, in equal measure:
Yes, they are my toes on this beautiful ancient mosaic, where thousands walk each day.
In Australia, this would be carefully preserved behind barriers...
I do love the Rococo ceilings...
and coming from a family who love maps, was in mapping heaven in this glorious Map Room, a long corridor lined with frescoes of all the regions of Italy:
On to Raphael, 'The School of Athens'...my pulse was quickening by now..
so famous and illustrious..
and on to the Sistine Chapel:
|Google image, as no photography permitted|
that unbelievable ceiling by Michelangelo..
You all know the story, how he lay on his back on the scaffolding for years and years, painting this fabulous and fantastic story of creation..
I was the last to rejoin our tour group..
and the Pieta, again Michelangelo, heart-meltingly beautiful in the Basilica of St Peters...
We became enamoured of a ristorante nearby, Canova Togalini,
a café, atelier and museum all in one..
we dine amidst original plaster models made by sculptors of the past..
and there is a workshop from the 17th century:
Rome is big, hardly surprising for a place that was the capital of the ancient world,
but we have enjoyed it immensely.
End of Part 1.
I will return....