Italy, and the glorious scenery of Tuscany

Italy

The wenches are ready for our Medieval feast!

Bevagna, Italy - Medieval feast at Le Gaite

Bevagna is a small town in Umbria. It's a charming and picturesque walled town, that was an important place in ancient Roman days, situated along the Via Flaminia. It's also home to a festival called Mercato Delle Gaite. For a few days each spring, the town is time-warped back to the middle ages... Read article...

A triumphant charioteer

Rome Italy - Chariot racing at Circus Maximus

What if you could travel back in time to witness Roman chariot racing at the Circus Maximus in ancient Rome? Gangs were seen rioting through the streets in celebration of their favorite charioteer's victory. Fights broke out between the fans of victors and losers. Sound like modern day fans? ... Read article...

Earworms for Italian

Using music to learn a language

What is it about melody that helps us memorize words and lyrics? This can be explained by "earworms," which are melodies that get stuck in your head. Advertisers use this with catchy melodic jingles. Now you can use the same technique to help you learn a foreign language... Read article...

Rome, Italy - Navona fountain (old, 300)

Rome: Eternal city 100 years ago = deja vu!

I just ran across these old archive photos of Rome tonight, that appear to be at least 100 years old. Photographs from tourists in my great-grandparents' days. Cool, eh? Being the "eternal city", Rome has so many sites and sights that date back varying numbers of centuries... Read article...

Pompeii, Italy - strong Scottish ale (300)

Pompeii, Italy: The Mystery of the Scottish Ale

After a hot, sunny morning exploring the amazing ruins of Pompeii, Italy, I decided to stop at their snack bar for lunch. An icy cold beer sounded like just the ticket, but I was mystified to find that the only beer they had was a Scottish strong ale. Since when do Italians drink Scottish ale? ... Read article...

Rome, Italy - Spanish Steps (300)

Rome, Italy: Shady side of the Spanish Steps

The Spanish Steps are one of the most famous locations in Rome. On this hot, sunny day in July, people were dangling their feet in the fountain, and umbrellas were popular items for the street vendors. Visitors always want to sit on the famous Spanish Steps, but today... Read article...

ruin-85w

Wooden throne buried by Vesuvius

An ancient Roman wood and ivory throne has been unearthed at a dig in Herculaneum, an ancient city near Pompeii. Like Pompeii, Herculaneum was destroyed in 79 AD by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius. The throne was found at the Villa of the Papyri, which belonged to Julius Caesar's father-in-law... Read article...

Pienza infiorata

So there we were... on streets paved with flowers

The Infiorata is held annually in Pienza. People take fresh flower petals - millions of them, and create designs on the city streets. Paths of petals lead up and down roads throughout the town, and even outside the town walls. They wind around, and eventually reach the main display... Watch the video...

Space alien fires in Italy

A 2-year government investigation into a series of electrical fires in an Italian village has produced a remarkable finding. According to leaked copies of the preliminary report, the most likely cause is aliens from outer space. The small village in Sicily drew attention 3 years ago... Read article...

Ancient Etruscans came from Turkey?

The Etruscans were predecessors to the Romans. They were an unrelated people whose sophisticated culture ruled a sizable portion of what is now Italy, centuries before the Romans arrived on the scene. There's a long-running controversy about the origins of the Etruscans... Read article...