Suspecting that the weekend crowds would be fierce in Florence, we set off this morning for Fiesole.

“The ancestress of Florence” was probably founded in the 9th-8th century BC, and as may be seen from the remains of its ancient walls,  it was an important member of the Etruscan confederacy.

The first recorded mention on the town dates to 283 BC, when the town, then known as Faesulae, was conquered by the Romans.

The stage of many battles over the centuries, it nonetheless remained an independent town for several centuries, well into the early Middle Ages. During some periods, it was no less powerful than Florence in the valley below. Finally, in 1010 and 1025 Fiesole was sacked by the Florentines, and ultimately conquered in 1125. In order to prevent a resurgence of resistance, the leading Fiesole families were obliged to take up their residence in Florence.                                                                                                 

Today, we saw evidence that many of Florence’s most well-heeled citizens have weekend and summer residences in the high hills of Fiesole.

We explored the remains of the Etruscan amphitheater and the Baths, then toured two small but excellent museums. The one on the site of the Etruscan ruins had many examples of the highly stylized sculpture, bronze, pottery and glass. The second housed some fine Renaissance pieces, including  a gallery dedicated to the distinctive Tuscan terra cotta wall ornaments.

I find these exceptionally beautiful. We have come across many shops selling the terra cotta and are trying to find a studio where it is made so that we can understand the process. So, more to come on that topic…

Arriving back to our cozy loft in the early afternoon, w e took a long siesta… It is HOT in Florence, just as hot as Merida in fact but with a bit less humidity.

Once the temperatures had abated, we took a long walk over to the Piazza de Santa Croce. We were in search of a small neighborhood restaurant we enjoyed when we were here five years ago. Like homing pigeons, we zeroed-in, and by the picture of Jorge… you can see that the 5 kilometer hike was well worth it!



Filed under Family and Friends

2 responses to “Fiesole

  1. Loretta Miller

    How did you like the sculptures in the main square in Fiesole? One of many memorable sights from my visit.

    • Hello Loretta!!! Drat… I didn’t get over to see them up close. I was on my way over there and the bus arrived. Maybe I need to go back? This is indeed a memorable corner of the world.

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