Tuesday, August 25, 2009

14Nov1867, A Good Stare at Famous Statues

FLORENCE, November 14th, 1867.
—Rainy, but pleasant in the afternoon. We did the Palazzo Vecchio and the Palazzo del Podestà. In spite of the arrangements being evidently very hasty and temporary, it is astonishing how much more conveniently the members are accommodated in the Pal. Vecchio (which is now the Salle des Députés) than ours are in either House of Parliament. But I think they might have managed it better in the great (not too great) Hall of the Podestà which would not have wanted the horrid partition they have had to put up in the Pal. Vecchio. We then had a good stare at the famous statues of the Piazza della Signoria and the Loggia ; N.B. remarkable likeness of Neptune to Mr. (Inspector) Bellairs. I can't appreciate Michaelangelo's David, whose head really is much too big. At the Podestà is the lovely little bronze Mercury springing up from the puff of a wind, by John of Bologna, of which there is a copy at Chatsworth, nothing like as spirited. Uffizi, pleasant drive with Mr. Trev [FN: I.e. Trevelyan, now Sir George Trevelyan. Sir George writes to me : "In the November of that year we dined together, we three and no one else, at Doney's restaurant every evening for at least a fortnight, and then my great friendship with them was cemented and consolidated."], to Bello Sguardo, dinner with him at Doney's. Opera (Hernani) with Grosvenors ; very pretty.

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