Thursday, June 23, 2016

If this is Thursday it must be postcards, 252

Florence, Italy, 2016

My friend went on another cycling trip, this time to Florence, in the Tuscany region of Italy.  While there he bought a new bike and also had time to select this postcard.  The photo on the card is attributed to Massimo Moscarelli and the card is an Edizioni la Cupola, Via delle Magolie, Firenze [Florence].  The picture shows the wall and bridge with a view of the city of Florence.  The bridge, Ponte Vecchio, seen on the right side of the photograph, spans the Arno River and was first built by the Etruscans.  The current bridge was rebuilt in the 14th century.  It is the only bridge in the city that survived World War II intact.

The Etruscans had a small settlement here in 200 BC that was destroyed in 80 BC during a political dispute with Rome.  Julius Caesar re-established it as a settlement for his veteran soldiers in 59 BC and called it Fluentia since it was built between two rivers.  It was built in the style of an army camp in the Arno River valley on the main route between Rome and the north and quickly became what would be a commercial hub today.  In medieval times Florence was one of the wealthiest cities and a center for trade and finance where the powerful Medici family held the political power. The Italian Renaissance was born in Florence and it was called one of the most important European cities between 1300 and 1500.  Most of what we recognize as Florence today was built during the Renaissance and the name was changed to Florentia meaning flowering.

Like most older European cities it has experienced periods of war and changes in government over a period of centuries.  Before the Bubonic Plague or Black Death pandemic of 1348 Florence had a population of about 94,000 with about 25,000 of those persons engaged in the wool industry.  Today metropolitan Florence is the most populous city in Tuscany with 382,000 inhabitants and over 1,500,000 in the greater metropolitan area. 

These three stamps below were used to mail the card.  

1.  Guardia Costiera (Coast Guard) 1865 – 2015, sesquicentennial commemorative; 2.  The Sisters of Saint Paul, 1915-2015, centennial commemorative;

3.  San Filippo Neri 1515-1595 honor--the decorative edging looks brown here but on the stamp itself it is gold colored.

The cards my friend sends from Italy show such warm, sunny, beautiful views.  The area is rich with history as well as scenic and culinary delights.  With many thanks as always to him for sharing the postcard and the stamps.

For more information, see:

No comments:

Post a Comment