Hospitality tradition for almost 150 years…
Hospitality tradition for almost 150 years…while waiting for 2021, for the 700 years from the death of Dante Alighieri the famous italian poet who visited Gargonza in 1304.
We like to remember the Marquis Bardo Corsi Salviati, the last descendant of the Corsi family who, thanks to the marriage of his daughter Francesca, passed the Farm of Gargonza to the Guicciardini family.
Around the early 1880s he received in Gargonza Sarah Freeman Clarke, an American painter who made an illustration of an interior of our medieval tower (the third floor to be precise) for an American magazine to remember the stages of Dante Alighieri including Gargonza .
Here’s what he wrote almost 150 years ago! Note how he appreciates the view from the terrace of the Tower.
Next to it a photo of the interior of the tower nowdays.
“The Marchese receives me with much courtesy, and he and the Marchesa make me kindly welcome. After learning what he can tell me of the history of the castle, some items of which he writes out for me, I am conducted into the old tower, and into the very chamber in which, according to family tradition, Dante lived some months. […] the view across the Val di Chiana to the hills where Arezzo stands is full of airy sunshine, is Italian and intoxicating. In other countries one may look on a wide and beautiful view with a certain coolness; one criticises its features and finds it better or poorer than other views; but in Italy, though it be but a level plain, the transparent curtain of the air, traversed by threads of golden light, makes an enchanted veil in which the spectator is caught and hel as in a net. He cannot criticise or compare; he can only yield to the magic spell.”
The Century Illustrated Monthly Magazine, November 1883 to April 1884, vol. XXVII, The Century Co., New York: Sarah Freeman Clarke, Notes on the exile of Dante, illustrations by Harry Fenn after sketches by the author.