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Cortona from the train 04/02/2011

Posted by florencecapital in Uncategorized.
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c. 1910

Towards three o’clock we passed Cortona, its white houses and churches gleaming pearly among the ilex and olive groves as they straggled up the steep hillside. Its wonderful name was shouted out by a sleepy porter with no more emotion than if it had been Hull or Brighton, yet this Etruscan city is so inconceivably ancient that it claims no less than to have sent forth the founders of Troy! However that may be, it is wondrous old, and its immense antiquity, the thought of the strange Etruscan rites which those slopes must have witnessed before the coming of the White Christ, the strange permanence of these material objects in a world of change, lays a steadying, calming hand upon the heart. It possesses more modern memories, too, of Luca Signorelli, its great son, who left his best work at Orvieto and here in his native town.