SWEET NAPOLI,THOU ARE MYSTERIOUS

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Oh sweet Naples, oh blessed land,
Where the creation wanted to smile!
You are the kingdom of harmony,
Santa Lucia, Santa Lucija!


Who is no heard this popular ballad about beautiful and mysterious city Naples…So when my daughter suggested a weekly trip to this sunny Italian city-  I accepted her proposal. from right away. Having used the cheap "Raynair" flight tickets, booked an inexpensive room through Airbnb company, we started our own jolly trip after that unusual, chaotic, but at the same time very impressive city. At first, we had some difficulties crossing the streets because the traffic was chaotic, From drivers, there was any attention to traffic lights or pedestrians passages.Motorcycles between pedestrians dive how fishes in the water, paying no attention to the peoples.. This street mayhem reminded me Africa cities, except that on the streets were not sheep, goats or donkeys prowling between cars, what pleasantly enlivens Africa cities streets.
 So about Naples. It is a city,  recalling a bloody mafia (Comoros) attacks, is held a guitar and mandolin homeland. Pizza also started their way in Naples. In Naples is the oldest Italian pizzeria where is baking the most famous Neapolitan pizza "Margarita". In the city are more than 400 churches, each having the distinctive history, amazing palaces, monuments, catacombs and museums. It is really could be named the museum of an open sky. Even the famous song of Andres Bocelli "Funiculi funicular "  is devoted to the funicular to the castle of San Elmo.To see all in one week is  really too short time, but  I guess what we managed to see-will remain in our mind for a long time.

_DSC7352There is a beautiful story about the establishment of the city. In IX BC it was called Parthenope- in honor of the  siren  Parthenope. These are  a Greek mythological creatures semi-females, semi-fishes. According to Homer "Odyssey", her songs decoyed the sailors into the coastal cliffs, where their ships wrecked. The Odyssey, wishing  to save his seamen, glued up their ears with wax and commanded himself to tie to the mast. Failing to sink the ship of Odysseus, Parthenope drowned in a grief. There, where the waves stranded ashore her body, the city named Parthenope has been set up. Only later, for an unknown reason besides to Parthenope Greeks built a new city and named it Naples (New City) At present only a small, narrow street called via Parthenope and remains of an arch on the coast reminds this beautiful legend.
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Castel_dell'Ovo_(1)_(15397707910)We started to visit the city from the two prominent sights of Naples: two castles next to each other: Caste  Nuovo and Castell dell'Ovo- or Egg castle (12 AD)).It is said that in the walls of castle Roman poet Virgil hid a magic crystal egg. The castle was rebuilt many times, but the egg was not found. Maybe, after all, it is for good, because this miraculous egg keeps Naples and it's  peoples from any kind of disasters.

_DSC7405A walk through the old town (as "New town " do not exists), a strange sense do not leave you: you are going through different periods of centuries, cultures,  different sizes,  styles of churches, palaces.Facciata_Duomo_di_Napoli_-_BW_2013-05-16 The church of the city's patrons St. Januarijus is distinguished by its size. St. Januarius Cathedral (Duomo di San Gennaro ) was built in III century (AD), St. Januarius is regarded as the city patron.
In the III century the Christians were cruelly persecuted.The bishop was brutally killed. There is a whole legend about of  the murdered bishop's Januarijus blood liquefaction phenomenon at the certain time of religious rites. The church this phenomenon  keeps very secretly so the scientists fail to solve this occurrence.

_DSC7430San Lorenzo Maggiore gothic style church  Here the "Decameron " author  Giovanni Boccaccio in 1413  met the daughter of King Roberto, princess Fiammetta. Princess inspired Boccaccio to write love lyrics.
In Naples lived and studied poet Publius Virgil, its streets reminds poets Petrarca, Dante,
_DSC7539 French writer  Stendhal. Even there are the lines of Lithuanian poet Maironis after his visit to Naples:"O beautiful Neapolitan earth/ where nature seems most smiles/you tired soul like a storm quieten /her harmony with Sants Lucia you filled/and dream in the sky will invite."/
Cappella-Sansevero-42881Miraculous art masterpiece are at  San Severo chapel  (16 century).Legend tells that San Severo prince Raimondo di Sangro was not faithful and was separated from the church. Raimondo experimented with people: in  the chapel are preserved the skeletons, which retains the entire blood circulatory system. How  all this has been achieved, scientists couldn't  explain. It is suspected that Raimondo his "models" before dead had been filled up with a special decoction, which strained blood in the blood vesselsIMG_0002 (2)cristo_velato3.Another secret of the chapel –a marble sculpture of Christi "Cristo velato". (Author Giuseppe Sanmartini, 1753yr.) Wrapped in the marble veil of  dead Cristi sculpture is still a mystery to fans of the sculpture, who can't find an explanation on how the author managed to achieve such a thin veil of marble. 1_14 Taking pictures at the chapel is strictly forbidden so my pictures were taken from postcards. By the way, all the museums not working days are different, so for large our disappointment, we did not get into  Capodimonte museum, where we were supposed to see the paintings of Caravaggio, Raphael, Tiziano, and others._DSC7527 Capodimonte Museum was built in18 century by the Spain king Charles III like his hunting lodge. Later it was built on a large scale and now is one of the biggest museums in Italy. The museum is located in a beautiful park on a  hill and offers a beautiful panorama of the Amalfi Bay, Mount Vesuvius._DSC7559 Beautiful skyline views to the city are   from San  Elmo castle. From there you can see how the main street of Napoli via Spaccanapolli divides the city into two parts._DSC7562 _DSC7564In the distance volcano, Vesuvio is seen. Because of the windy weather we were not allowed to go to the top of Vesuvius, visited only ruins Pompeii and Herculaneum.

 

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Throughout the day we have visited the largest island of the Gulf of Naples, Ischia. The island has  a volcanic origin, there are 70 hot springs, but in October, the tourist season was over and the springs were IMG_1978closed down for  visitors.The courteous taxi driver, nice speaking English, told the story of the island, showed us sightseeing places. It turns out that in 1867 Norwegian writer Henry Ibsen lived in the island. The place where he lived is called "Ibsen Villa". Supposedly inspired by the island nature beauty he wrote poem "Peer Gynt", in 1948 here lived American writer Truman Capote (Truman Streckfus), "Dinner at Tiffany " author, island loved writer Oscar Wilde.IMG_0004
On the shore of the island on the high hill is built castle (474 BC) named Aragon Castle (Castello Aragonese) The coast of the island is full of a lot of cozy cafes, fisherman's, souvenir's shops.We took a dinner there and were awarded very pleasant service and attention. Of course, the Neapolitan pizza really amazing (after all, this is the homeland of pizza), just as the cheese "Mozzarella" its taste quite unlike to our Lithuanian substitute.
The week went fast. Time to go home. Traffic service is good, especially we lived near Garibaldi Square, from which is the direct bus to the airport. At the end of our travel we learned to cross the streets, us already no longer irritated piles of garbage in the streets and hang up laundry on balconies or across the street. After all, where do you want to hang out the washings for drying? Everything is made up of the fact that there are no yards  the streets are so narrow that we often saw the neighbors talked over the street. It is convenient. We don't  say Naples goodbye, but only until…. Until next meeting, charming  Napoli!

 

Leonarda Sarakauskiene:   info@sarakauskiene.lt

 

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