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Luna Di Fragola Posted by on Jun 24, 2016

A group of girls watches a full Strawberry Moon, or Rose Moon, rise above the Tagus river in Lisbon Tuesday, June 2, 2015. Strawberry Moon was the name given by native American Algonquin tribes to the June full moon while in Europe it's often called Rose Moon. (AP Photo/Armando Franca)

Last week I published an article about the gnomone in the Duomo di Firenze, which casts an image of the sun onto an indicator incised into the floor of the cathedral at around midday during the period of the summer solstice. This aroused my curiosity about the phenomenon of the solstice in general, and led…

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The Interview Posted by on Jun 22, 2016

Via Fillunga, Lucca

The other afternoon, as I was browsing through some second hand books, I found one by Mario Tobino, entitled Il Deserto Della Libia (The Libyan Desert). Mario Tobino (1910- 1991) was not just a famous prizewinning author, but also a notable psychiatrist who lived and worked for 35 years in the psychiatric hospital of Lucca,…

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Astronomy In The Cathedral Posted by on Jun 20, 2016

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Il Duomo di Firenze, also known as La Chiesa Di Santa Maria Del Fiore, is one of the world’s most famous cathedrals. Last Year, the roughly 1.3 million tourists who visited it will certainly have admired its amazing cupola, designed by Brunelleschi, and built between 1418 and 1436. Brunelleschi’s cupola, the world’s largest masonry dome,…

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Italian Chestnut Bread Posted by on Jun 17, 2016

farina_di_castagne

Here’s an unusual recipe from the Appennino Tosco Emiliano region, where chestnuts were the main staple food for centuries, il pane di farina di castagne (chestnut bread). This recipe involves the use of the vocabulary we explored in our last article: What Is Pasta? Note how the words pasta, impastare and impasto are used in…

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What is pasta? Posted by on Jun 15, 2016

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What is pasta? Asked that question, most non Italians would probably think of spaghetti, lasagne and the many other variations of dried or semi dried dough which are commonly referred to by that name. But what is pasta, really? In English, there are various ways to translate the word pasta, the most literal being ‘paste’.…

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