- The tombstone in London of Karl Marx says
- Galileo's problem with the Church is well known. He was not allowed to
be buried on the church ground, until 1990 when he was retried and
pardoned by Church. When I went to Florence in 2005 to study
Galileo's Florence, I was very
happy to see his tomb on the wall of this Church, and I constructed
a webpage entitled Galileo's Florence.
In September of 2014, I visited this church again. I had a
photo with Galileo.
- In 2014, I was able
Enrico Fermi's tomb on the same
wall. I did not see this tomb when I was there in 2004. I became very
happy to note that Fermi was added during the 10-year period from
2004 to 2014.
I was so happy to see him that I had photo of myself there. It was not enough. I had to find some people to whom I could brag about myself. Then I met there two mid-aged ladies. One was from Australia and the other from the U.S.A. They both spoke English, but did not know who Fermi was.
They then asked me whether I met him. I said No, but I told them my thesis advisor at Princeton was Fermi's student. They became impressed. They were very happy to have a photo with a Princeton boy. Here is my photo with my advisor.
|Galilei and Fermi|
- Niccolò Machiavelli
was also entombed there, presumably earlier than Galilei.
These days, the word "Machiavellianism" means all available means
including unethical means. However, he believed in individual
rights and expressed his views using the methods perspectively
ethical, but acceptable to the church. He was born and raised in
Florence, and the city of Florence is very proud of him.
If you are a physicist, your main job is to become famous. There are many ways to become famous. First of all, you should obtain a sound result from your research. You then have to make it known to your colleagues. In general, they do not welcome your result due to their Herod Complex. You have to find out your own way of telling others about your research results. Here I am talking about myself. I developed the art of making webpages.
Dante Alighieri was also born in Florence. Many people
still write books about him, but I have not read any of them.
However, I venture to make the following comment.
Before Dante, this world was God-centered. The concept of this God-centered world was developed during the Egyptian period while Pharaohs wanted have the absolute central power. However, in Dante's writings, individuals are also important elements in the world. The world then makes a continuos transition for the God-centered world to Sartre's self-centered world. Who is Sartre? Click here.
In physics, it is always a challenging proposition to change the direction of research. I have been publishing my papers since 1961, and I expect to publish more this year. It was fun to see how the physics world was changing its research direction.
Gioachino Rossini was not born in Florence, but he deserves
a place in this church. I am not a musician but I love to listen and
love to talk about music.
Before Rossini, composers had to write music in order to praise God. However, Rossini started to compose his operas in order to entertain humans. Renaissance indeed!
Rossini in his later years lived in Paris and died there in 1868, buried there. His remains then were brought to the Basilica of Santa Croce in 1887. I had a photo of myself in front of Rossini's empty tomb at the Pere La Chaise Cemetery in Paris.
Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni has a long name.
Like Leonardo da Vinci, he was born in a village not far from
Florence. Without him, Florence would be different city.
- This is the Moses by Michelangelo.
You may have seen its photo, but have you seen the real thing?
It is in a Roman church not well known. This church is near
the Roman Colosseum, and its
facade does not look impressive. The name of this
church is on this brass plate.
Michelangelo constructed this sculpture for the tomb of
Pope Julius II.
Deposition (Florentine Pieta) is believed to be his
self-portrait. He constructed as his own grave stone. In this
sculpture, Michelangelo portrays himself as Nicodemus.
According to the Gospel of John, Nicodemus was one of the Pharisees (upper-class Jewish men) but he did not like his own society. He then made a secret visit to Jesus. Jesus told him "Born again."
Michelangelo made great contributions to the Church and to the Medici family. On the other hand, like Nicodemus, he did not like the people from those two powerful groups. He believed in Jesus.
For many years, I thought I was Paul A. M. Dirac's Nicodemus, and I still brag about it. It was a great pleasure to find out I am not alone admiring Nicodemus.
- This is the Moses by Michelangelo. You may have seen its photo, but have you seen the real thing? It is in a Roman church not well known. This church is near the Roman Colosseum, and its facade does not look impressive. The name of this church is on this brass plate. Michelangelo constructed this sculpture for the tomb of Pope Julius II.
Other Churches in Florence
There are many other churches in Florence. You can go to this Wikipedia page for a comprehensive list of the churches in Florence. Let us look at some of them.
Basilica of San Lorenzo is the largest church in Florence. It is
located at the market square of the city. This church was developed
exclusively for the Medici family.
- This church has a pre-Renaissance Roman-style facet. The Medici family once asked Michelangelo to change it to the Renaissance style, but Michelangelo did not like the idea and the Medicis did not have enough money for this particular project. Its Roman style is OK and is very attractive.
- However, inside, the church is shiny and thoroughly in post-Renaissance style.
- On the back of this building, there is sign saying Medic Chapel.
- I was inside the church during the night while there was a concert
for young musicians, and I was
able to take a close-up photo of
the church alter.
- The church garden is parallel to the long church building, and is surrounded by the dormitory rooms for the priests.
- The statue of one of the Medici men is at the corner of the church fore-ground.
- Across the street from this statue, there is a fashion shop, carrying the latest fashions.
- Cathedral of
St. Maria del Fiore, known as the Duomo of Florence. This church has
its history, and has served as the center of the city for many centuries.
The construction of the church was initiated before the Medici family became
prominent, but the Medicis made contributions during the final stage of
construction when decorations were added.
- The church structure is so big that
it is not possible to
photograph the entire building within the city. You have to rent a
helicopter, or go to a higher ground with a telephoto lens. I took
this photo from the Michelangelo Plaza at a hill top south of the
- Partial view of the church. Another view.
- Outside wall. There are also variations. I am not able to understand the design concept of this complicated structure.
- The church dome viewed from the ground.
- Giotto's Bell Tower. My camera lens
was wide enough to take this full-length photo when I was there in 2014.
In 1999, my camera lens was
not wide enough.
- Facet of the church.
Lunch with the church in the background.
I had a lunch there in 1999.
- Inside the church. There are many tourists. I assume there are scheduled service hours.
- Image of Jesus high inside wall.
- Ceiling of the Dome.
- Statue of one of the Saints. I forgot who he is.
- Donation Jar. This church also needs money. See the beautiful floor of the church.
- The church structure is so big that it is not possible to photograph the entire building within the city. You have to rent a helicopter, or go to a higher ground with a telephoto lens. I took this photo from the Michelangelo Plaza at a hill top south of the Arno River.
Basilica of Santa Maria Novella is another giant church in Florence.
The main train station is next to this church. The church was built
many years before the train station.
- From the station ground, you can see the back of the church.
- This is the front view of the church. This is also a beautiful church.
- This is a side view of the church
- Front doors of the church. The main entrance is open during the service hours. Tourists use one of the small doors. They of course have to pay the entrance fee.
- Inside, it is a Gothic-style church.
- The main altar of the church.
There were worshippers.
- Santa Maria Novella Station is the
main train station in Florence. From the architectural point of view,
this building is an orphan of Florence. I am not against modern buildings,
but I do not understand why this building is so against the Florentine
- There are man other churches in Florence, but I cannot talk about all of them. Click here for a list of the churches in Florence.
|Latest fashions in Florence.|
Art Museums in Florence
Have you been to Florence (Italy)? It is really annoying not to see Medici's name at prominent places. Florence's most popular spot is not named after him. You have to wait for four hours in line to get into the museum named after Uffizi. Who was Uffizi? Was he richer than Medici? Yes!
The word Medici is well known to us because the Medici family supported many Renaissance artists. It is also well known that Florence was their home base for business operations. If this is the case, why could we not see the trace of this important chapter in history?
- Uffizi Gallery
consists of the collection of the Renaissance art works. They are housed
in the former Medici banking headquarters in Florence. I have been
inside the museum twice, but was not allowed photograph any of the items.
However, many of those items are in the public domain and available from
- Indeed, the twin Uffizi buildings
used to serve as the World Trade Center
of their time.
Those two "Uffizi" building used to be Medici's "Office" buildings.
Right! "Uffizi" sounds like "office."
- This is an image of the main hall way
of the Gallery.
- These twin buildings were and still are separated by a street
called the Uffizi Courtyard.
Here are the photos of the
Courtyard taken from the fourth and second floors of western
building. There are many statues of those creative Italians.
I had a photo of myself in front of
Leonard da Vinci.
- You have seen this painting of Venus by
Sandro Botticelli. This painting is in this Museum.
- Many of those paintings are now in the public domain. However, you can see most of the famous items by going to the Wikipedia page.
- Indeed, the twin Uffizi buildings used to serve as the World Trade Center of their time. Those two "Uffizi" building used to be Medici's "Office" buildings. Right! "Uffizi" sounds like "office."
- Palazio Pitti.
Lucas Pitti was also a very rich Italian banker. He was very friendly
with the Medici family, and was also a competitor. Unlike the Medicis,
he was against the Renaissance style. He insisted on classical Roman
style. Is this style totally outdated?
- Let us go to Paris. The Luxembourg
Palace was modeled after the Pitti Palace. How did this happen?
for an interesting story.
- Another view of the Palace. This
Palace now serves as a museum for many Renaissance paintings.
- Madonna della Seggiola. You have seen this picture by Rafael before. This painting is in this museum.
- Let us go to Paris. The Luxembourg Palace was modeled after the Pitti Palace. How did this happen? Click here for an interesting story.
Galleria dell Academia.
- Bagello Museum,
People's Palace. This building was originally built for a prison.
- Inside the building. A very luxurious prison.
- Donatello's David in the Palace, originally a prison building.
Palazzo Vecchio was originally built for the city government.
It is now a major museum in Florence.
- The tower of the Palace viewed from the Uffizi Court.
- The tower and the Ponte Vecchio seen from the Michelangelo Plaza.
- Entrance to the building.
There are many valuable items in this museum. Click here to see them. I have never been inside, but there are many items you can approach near this building.
- Statue of David (reproduction) in front of this building.
- Neptune and his Fountain admired by a man and a woman.
- Out-door sculptures near the Palace building.
- Statue of Cosimo Medici near the building.
Panoramic view of the city from
the Michelangelo Plaza.
Piazzale Michelangelo is at a hill top south of
the Arno River which flows westward to Pisa. You can have a panoramic
view of the city.
- A view with the Palazzo Vecchio, Duomo, and the Basilica Santa Croce.
- Ponte Vecchio viewed from this plaza. This bridge has its history.
- Michelangelo's David (reproduction) at the center of the plaza.
- The entire city is a big museum.
- Arno River. Photo taken by an impressionist photographer.
- Street artists.
- One of the Medieval gates. Florence was once a walled city. There are many gates like this. Here are another photo of the gate people
- I love Mcdonald's. Delivery car.
- Statue of man holding a woman
in an unusual manner.
- There are many more photos. I will post them when I have time.
Enough about stone structures
- Let us meet some people.
- Lunch alone, surrounded by stone walls (1999). I look hopeless.
- Interesting People on the street. I was just looking at them.
- Russian Friends. Oh Yes. I know
them, and they knew me. It is always a pleasure to meet the friends
unexpectedly. It happens in Florence.
- Beautiful Heart. This hotel manager wanted me to have a hearty breakfast. She came from Germany, and it is German farmers' tradition to fill up the stomachs before going to the fields.
- American Vacationers. It is always fun to meet Americans in Europe. These people came from the area not far from my house.
- Italians. I was lucky enough to meet these Italian ladies at a restaurant called "Il Latini." It is very difficult to meet Italians in Florence.
- Immigrant from Morocco, working at a pastry store at the southern end of the Ponte Vechia (2014). She spoke English fluently. A very cheerful young lady.
- Italian police officer, near the Duomo.
Italian police officers are stylishly dressed.
- Two ladies from Costa Rica at a Pizza house. It was my first time to meet Costa Ricans.
- American lady from Chicago (2004). She was with her friend.
- Italian high school student speaking
English fluently. I met her while waiting for an airport bus at
the bus station. It was like talking to my granddaughter, and I
enjoy talking to my grandchildren.
- I enjoy meeting people and talking with them. I have many more photos. I will post them when I have time.
- Click here for Galileo's Florence.
Two Medici Girls in FranceIn Europe, during 15th and 16th centuries, one has to marry a girl from the Medici family to be somebody. Two French kings imported two Medici girls from Italy for their brides.
- Catherine de Medici (1519-1588) went to Paris as a king's bride.
In Italy, she was interested in an art of combining music and dance.
In France, she added songs and dances to French dramas. This
song-and-dance art was developed further by Louis XIV (1638-1715).
This became the origin of French ballets.
In 1717, after Louis XIV died, Peter the Great of Russia visited Paris accompanied by many Russian politicians, scientists, and artists. Here is a portrait of Peter the Great holding Louis XV (15).
Those Russian artists noticed that the French stage art of songs and dances is quite consistent with their Slavic tradition. After going back to their country, the Russian artists developed this new French song-and-dance art. This became the origin of Russian ballets. Let us visit the following two ballets.
- Marie de Medici (1573-1642) was also a Medici girl who went to
France to become the king's bride. She became Louis VIV's grandmother,
and her portrait in the Louvre Museum in Paris.
She was born in the Pitti Palace in Florence, and she built a palace looking like the Pitti Palace. Her palace in Paris is now called the Luxembourg Palace. Let us look at the photos of those two palaces.
The Luxembourg Palace is now at the Luxembourg Gardens in Paris. Here is the Wipipedia for this park. Have you been in Paris? If Yes, you must have been to the Luxembourg Gardens. Did you know that this place has a Medici influence?
copyright@2015 by Y. S. Kim, unless otherwise specified.