From Venice to Florence

Our group at the train station saying Goodbye to Venice!

Friday it was goodbye to Venezia and hello to Firenze (Florence).    This is also a shift from a part of Italy that had once been relatively independent of  Rome, and then for awhile controlled by Austria, to a region that defines the central core of Italian identity: Tuscany.

Il Duomo in Florence

We focused today on setting up the renaissance, building from Giotto and Scrovegni to Brunelleschi, the Medicis and the like.   The politics, art and development of western thought in the renaissance is astounding and Florence is central.

Steve talking about Landini at Santa Maria Novella

Talking about Brunneleschi and the Duomo - and perspective

Of course, the students got interrupted as camera crews kept coming through.   “Oh my God,” one yelled and they all started screaming.   Apparently a show called Jersey Shore is filming here, and they distracted the students a few times.  Still, things went well.

Jersey Shore in Florence? Not really sure what that is, but the students know

Later as we gave students a walking tour, a few of them decided to dance on the Ponte Vecchio  to a street singer/musician.   He was pretty good, and they had fun.

Dancing on the Ponte Vecchio!

Florence is louder, livelier, has cars, and is a fascinating historical treasure.  More soon!

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