Now that all of our students have settled into the swing of things here, we thought we’d brighten up this grey and drizzly Wednesday afternoon with some fun facts about Florence. That way the next time someone asks you about your new home, you can say “Well, did you know that….?”
Without further ado, the top 5 fun facts about Florence…
5. Did you know that the Duomo is the largest brick dome EVER constructed? Hats off toFilippo Brunelleschi for winning the competition to design Florence’s most impressive landmark. It houses the Cathedral of Florence, which is the second largest church in Italy (coming behind St.Peter’s Basilica in Rome).
4. Piazzale Michelangelo is famous for being one heck of a lookout spot (the piazza overlooks the entire city), but if you head even farther up the hill from Piazzale, you’ll stumble upon theChurch of San Miniato, home to some real live monks! If you head up to San Miniato around 4:30 pm you can catch the monks doing their daily Gregorian chants inside the church (in the summer, chanting is done at 5:30 PM).
3. Underneath Piazza della Signoria lies an entire ancient Roman amphitheater! Excavation of the Roman ruins of the ancient city of Florentia finished in 2010, where archaeologists discovered not only the remains of an amphitheater but also evidence of wells, building foundations and other edifices. Tours are available and reservations are a must (Tours are in Italian language only).
2. Carlo Lorenzini (also known as Carlo Collodi), the writer who created the infamous children’s character Pinocchio, was born in Florence.
1. Florence is considered to be the birthplace of the modern Italian language, thanks to Dante Alighieri! Dante used a mixture of his native Florentine and southern Italian influences in his poetry collection The Divine Comedy, which was read throughout Italy and eventually used to standardize the Italian language.
So now you know 5 interesting facts about Florence, Italy!