Marjorie E. Franklin
Diary of first
December 27th 1906 - Jan 10th 1907
Thursday Dec 27th
Left Victoria station 10.20 A.M. with Mother, Sydney & Miss Mable Stier, whom we are to take as far as Florence.
A cold morning, with snow on ground. Arrived Dover at 1, met by Miss I.D. Taylor & her father.
The crossing to Calais was fairly rough ("bubbly" the sailor said. I sat on deck (sheltered) & was slightly ill (took [pape roach]), Mother only felt so.
Arrived Paris 6.30. Carriage to ourselves except for 3 gentlemen - [ ] & 2 friends - made marmite - read Lethaby's "Medieval Art" & Symonds "Renaissance", vol: iii, "the Fine Arts."
Arrived Paris at 6.30, had nearly 3-4 hrs. wait. Drove from Gare du Nord
Had a good dinner at station buffet.
to Gare du Lyon.
Had carriage to ourselves
Friday Dec: 28th
A lovely frosty morning. Windows of carriage obscured by thick layer of ice. Tried to melt them with matches, boiling water etc, eventually thawed in tunnel.
Stood at open door & looked out - Beautiful Swiss-like scenery - snow, ice & mountains. At Modane Buckthorn berries, fir trees, larches & icycles [sic] etc.
At Modane got out for a few minutes - lovely sunshine, crisp snow & mountains - tickets viséd & luggage passed (not examined). This is the frontier town between France
& Italy. Soon after passed into the Mont Cenis pass into Italy. There was slightly less snow, but beautiful mountain views.
No snow at Turin.
Got out for few minutes at Turin. It is a fine town with large houses. Changed for Genoa, where we arrived late - about 8 instead of 6.40.
The views between Turin & Genoa very fine, especially the pink sunset covering the snow-covered alps behind Turin, which is itself in a plain - this was the finest view of the journey. Near Genoa are high mountains again, slightly snow-covered.
Stayed Eden Palace Hotel.
Eden Palace Hotel.
Saturday - Dec: 29
First view of Italian town - Houses - bright colours - people - shops etc - narrow, quaint streets etc, etc. A glorious day.
A very fine town, with large buildings & many palaces etc.
First to the cathedral - Romanesque & renaissance, a fine building - old columns with Corinthian capitals. Chapel carved by Giovanni Battista, Andrea Sansovino etc.
Palaces - renaissance. Went in Palazzo Rosso (red) - pictures - a few Van Dyck etc.
Palazzo Bianca (white) - pictures etc, more interesting than P.R. - Rubens, xVan Dyke, dutch painters, some Italian, Tintoretto, Moroni, (portraits).
Sant' Via Garibaldi Street with most palaces - Fine staircases & courts (saw those of P. Municipale, Universate).
San Donato - Interesting romanesque church with fine picture, adoration of Magi, by Meister von Todtes Maria of Cologne.
Italian lunch at Aquila d’Oro. After lunch went to the harbour & saw for first time the Mediterranean, harbour is very beautiful.
Went up to the park of Villetta Dinegro, a cascade & lovely view of town, sea & mountains. Orange trees, olive trees, palms, acacia in seed, ever-green oak in fruit & much else.
Lovely blue sky.
Walked part some way up the Via di Circonvallazione a Mare, which ends in the mountains behind town.
From here we had good views of the town. It seems to be built in platforms on the hill, bridges from the roofs of houses leading to the street above. Many of the roofs are flat & have gardens.
We returned to the lower part of town, saw a few more palaces, had coffee, standing, & cakes at little shop near station, bought postcards & went by 5.40 train to Pisa. Though dark, views of hills & Mediterranean from train were very beautiful.
Arrived Pisa 10.30 - stayed Grand Hotel.
Drove from station in omnibus with bishop of Durham & his wife.
& Hotel des Padres.
Baedecker, Symonds &
Ruskin (Val d’Arno)]
Sunday Dec: 30
The hotel is on the banks of the Arno & we had a lovely view.
A beautiful morning, with blue sky, a little misty at first, but cleared up later.
Went first to the beautiful "Piazza de Duomo", where are the Cathedral, baptistery, campanile (leaning tower) & Campo Santo, all extremely fine.
First into the Campo Santo where & saw the lovely frescoes. Liked especially the ‘Triumph of death and last judgment" (& pictures) by an unknown artist & attributed to Oreagna. Read description & explanation from J. A. Symonds Renaissance in Italy -‘the fine Arts’ - the series of Old Testament frescoes by Bonozzo Gozzoli (23 pictures) - & picture of St. Ephesus & the Archangel Michael
in battle by Spinello Aretino - (see Symonds). Also temptations etc of St. Rainerius by Andrea da Firenze & Antonio Veneziano (interesting).
Among the sculptures is a madonna by Giovanni Pisano, a roman sarcophagus by fr & a greek vase from which Niccolo Pisano took ideas for his pulpit.
Next we saw the cathedral, which has lovely reliefs & outside (besides architectural beauty - especially dome,), facade etc). Interior - romanesque. Columns are Roman & Greek - among Galileo’s bronze lamp (wh. is said to have suggested swinging of pendulum) in nave, by Battista Lorenzi. Some stalls by Majorno - Mosaics in transepts by follower of Cimabue, that in choir by Cimabue.
Walked to S. Caterina, a fine ch. (13th cent), with especially façade, with a very interesting
round picture of the triumph of St. Thomas Aquinas with his glory, by Traini .(1341) - (Symonds - Rays decend from Christ upon Moses, St. Paul, Plato &Aristotle, from them to Aquinas & open book & from him to Dominicans underneath. Averoes beneath his feet). There is also sculpture by Nino Pisano.
Next to the convent church of S. Francisco - frescoes in choir by Taddeo Gaddi & in sacristy Death & Assumption of the Virgin (frescoes) by Taddeo di Bartolo: the rest of the ch: convent is used as the Museo Civico, where are early pictures, etc, sculptures etc, of little interest. The chief thing there are the beautiful fragments (almost complete) of the pulpit by Giovanni Pisanno, formerly in cathedral.
Drove to hotel for lunch.
Drove over the bridge to the charming little chapel ‘dela spina’ (the Mariner’s Church) on the banks of the Arno. Saw outside of
San Paolo - façade especially.
Next the Baptistry, wh: we liked immensely both inside & exterior. Circular with a dome. Beautiful doors and sculpture. Interior - very good capitals old to pillars & beautiful pulpit by Niccolo Pisano (1260). Looked at this thoroughly with Ruskin’s "Val D'Arno". Amusing echose guide. Sydney, Miss Stier & I went up the leaning tower, to the topmost part, &, the day being very clear, had a most beautiful view of Pisa (situated on in a plain) with mountains all round & the Mediterranean in the distance. Saw from here a funeral procession of a "great lady" from a convent - nuns & little children of the convent school bearing torches, a sumptuous coffin - very picturesque.
Tea at the Hotel Nettuno (too pretentious & not v good). Photographs & train to Florence, 5.30 (arrived 7.30) & saw Miss Styer off to stay with Mrs Bishop & drove in 'bus to Hotel Minerva. Dinner, unpacked & to bed.
books we found
of greatest use
We also have the Misses Horner
Hare’s -‘N. Italy’.
Monday Dec 31st
Hotel Minerva, Florence
Started out about 9.30 10. A.M. A lovely day. The hotel is opposite the ch. of S. Maria Novella (in Piazza St. M.N.).
Went first to the Uffizi, passing many beautiful buildings etc, especially, Palazzo Strozzi, & San Michele (with statues by Donatello etc), the splendid Piazza della Signoria, opposite the Palazzo Vecchio, & the Loggia di Lanzi, where is Benvenuto Cellini "Perseus" as well as other statues.
In the Uffizi, among the many pictures which we liked very much, our favourites were (not necessarily in order of preference) - Fra Angelico’s "coronation of the virgin", Botticelli's "Adoration of the Magi", Birth of Venus All the Botticellis in the Bot: room, a Madonna & child by
Filippo Lippi, an unfinished Adoration of the Magi by Leonardo, Raphaels (own portrait, Julius II) & Madonna del Cardinello, Durers Adoration of Magi & portrait of his father, Simone Martini & Lippo Mimmi, Annunciation, etc, etc - I will not continue the list, as we are going again & shall mark the catalogue - We read the "Mediaeval Had town series & Ruskin.
Looked well at lovely "Niobe group" - must mention also the Venus di Medici, boy with thorn & an Apollo in repose. & Just looked at the drawings & the Venetian rooms.
Lunch at the "Toscana" restaurant in Via de’ Calzaioli.
Looked at the relief his of Della Robbia (his most beautiful I have yet seen) of meeting of St. Francis & St. Dominic outside the cloister of San Paolo.
Went into the Spanish Chapel Santa
Maria Novella, not spending long there - Ghirlandajo's are covered by scaffolding - Cimabue’s Madonna - Looked chiefly at the frescoes by Oreagna (in Strozzi chapel) - Last Judgement, giving of keys to Peter, Inferno (attributed to Andrea’s brother) , &, chiefly, the paradise & coronation of the virgin. It was too dark to see them well.
Spent about 2 hours in Spanish chapel & cloisters & church, reading Ruskin etc. I will not attempt to describe these frescoes but we liked them among the best things in Florence.
Bought cakes & chestnuts & made tea in bed room.
Bought p.cs, wrote diary & read in evening.
Tuesday - Dec January 1st 1907
Father had been expected to arrive in the middle of the night, but did not get here till about 10.
A dull, wet morning, very cold & streets very slippery from frost.
Went first to the Riccardi Palace (the home of the Medici prior to the Pitti). The palace & courtyard are fine, but the chief interest is the beautiful fresco by Bonozzo Gozzoli (perhaps his finest) covering 4 walls of the chapel. As this is very dark we saw it by artificial light, but this did not matter as it was painted by artificial light. It is in excellent preservation & represents the adoration journey of the 3 kings .(each wall one king, in choir adoring angels) - many of the figures are portraits.
Next we went to the church of the Badia, opposite the Bargello, where is the Vision of St. Bernard, perhaps Filippino Lippi’s masterpiece. We looked well at this.
Had lunch at the "Melini" restaurant in the Via de’ Calzaioli.
Drove to Santa Croce, but found it closed, as it was New Year, & could get no answer when we rang the custodian’s bell. Walked back to Or San Michele, the Duomo etc, but everything was closed till 2, 3 or 4 o’clock. Saw statues in the Loggia dei Lanzi. Liked a Judith & Holofernes by Donatello & chiefly Benvenuto’s Cellini’s Perseus. Looked inside the Palazzo Vecchio.
The Duomo was shut till 3, but, after waiting sometime outside in wet, got in at 2.30 with guide. The inside is disappointing after the beautiful exterior, but there are some lovely
a very Italian
show, - a
& other things (!)
while we waited.
things there, - glass by Ghiberti - too dark to see much, but examined by artificial light - bronze gates by Della Robbia & Donatello, a few statues by Della Robbia, his singing gallery boys, in wood, &, in the choir behind the altar the late, & unfinished "Pieta" by Michelangelo, bronze shrine of St. Zenobius by Ghiberti (very fine).
Went to call on Miss Alexander (Francesca, Ruskin’s friend) - Interesting conversation. Her mother is 93 & she has only slept away from her 3 nights.
Home, wrote diary, read Symonds, Browning etc.
Wednesday Jan 2nd 1907.
A dull, grey day.
Miss Styer arrived at about 9.45 & drove with us to the Ospedale degli Innocenti, in the Piazza dell’Annunziata, in one of the fine old Florentine squares, with statues by Giovanni de Bolognia etc.
On the outside of the hospital is the row delightful ra medalions of "bambinos" in swaddling clothes (white on blue) by Andreadella Robbia. Inside is an old court &, on the door leading to the church, a charming relief of the Annunciation by Andrea della Robbia.
Inside the church we saw the altar piece (mounting a wooden platform to see it), a splendid Adoration of the Magi by Ghirlandajo.
We next went to the church of Santissima Annunziata, in the same Piazza, in
the courtyard of which are numerous frescoes by Andrea del Sarto. Those we liked best were the Nativity of the Virgin, the Madonna del Sacco of over the door in the cloisters & a little head of Christ inside the door church.
We went next to the Academia di Belle Arte. Among many beautiful pictures we liked best - Gentile da Fabriano "Adoration of Magi", Most of the Fra' Angelico’s, especially the "Last Judge-ment", some small heads & a portrait of Savonarola by Fra Bartolomeo. Portraits (of 2 monks) & Agony in the Garden by Perugino, Fra Lippo Lippi "Coronation of the Virgin", Ghirlandajo’s "Adoration of the Magi", Botticelli’s "Spring" - We will be going again & I may well add to the list.
We then went to the chapter house church of S. Maria Maddalena de’Pazzi, where is a beautiful
crucifixion with Saints, a frescoe in 3 parts, by Perugino.
We then looked into the gorgeous & very large synagogue, wh: is nearby.
From here we drove to the Piazza di San Marco, but finding the restaurant we were in search of no longer non-existent, walked to the restaurant "Sport" opposite Or San Michele & had lunch.
We then drove to the monastery of S. Marco. This is historically most interesting & is full of lovely frescoes by Fra Angelico, one for being painted in every cell. I may mention, as particularly beautiful, those in the courtyard, the wonderful large, crucifixion with 20 saints (life size) & medalions of dominicans round, annunciation &c small easel picture made in cell of P. De Cosimo de Med etc.
m Saw cells of Fra Angelico, Bartolomeo, Savonarola, St. Antoninios & that frequented
by Cosimo da Medici.
In the library are alluminated books. In the refectory is a portrait picture of Dominicans fed by angels by Sogliani & a few other things. After this Miss Styer left us.
Next went to Chiostro dello Scalzio, were are "grisailles" frescoes by Andre del Sarto (life of St. John Baptist), which we liked very much, especially that of St. John preaching in desert. Some were painted in conjunction with Francia Bigio.
Went into the Anacolo di S’Apollonia, where are several early pictures, copies etc, not of great interest, & a superbly very well painted "Last Supper" by Castagnia.
Had tea in a shop opposite & drove home. Bought photographs at Alinari’s in Via Tornabuani &, in the evening, read some of Vasari’s Lives of the painters in Miss Seely’s "Stories from Vasari". Wrote diary.
Thursday - Jan: 3rd.
Rather a dull morning. After looking into Santa Maria Novella, Mother & I drove, over the picturesque Ponte Vecchio, to the picture gallery of the Pitti Palace, where we were joined by Father & Sydney, who had visited Or San Michele.
Our favourite pictures were - Georgone’s (or Titian’s) "concert", Titian’s portraits of Cardinal Ippolito & "Young English-man", Raphael’s (portrait) Mad: del Granducea & (not quite so much as the last) Mad: della Sedia, La donna Velatta, Pope Leo X & cardinals, Filippo Lippi’s Mad: & child, & Landscape by Ruysdael, A Mad: & child, & angels in a garden by Botticini, la Bella Simonetta. We also liked several of the Fra Bartolomeo’s & Andrea del Santo's, but, out of several fine ones, there is no one which I liked enough to single out.
When we came out, there was brilliant sunshine & the courtyard & Piazza looked lovely. This piazza is one of the finest, it is mentioned in "Romolo" (who lived near the Ponte Vecchio) & Mrs Browning’s poems. The Browning’s house is just opposite the Palace (Casa Guidi). We next went into the Pitti Palace itself, through georgeous appartments to see ‘Pallas & the Centaur’ by Botticelli (discovered about 5 years ago) & one a Mad: & child & angels in a garden ascribed to him. Next saw glanced at silver collection in palace - some by Benvenuto Cellini, crucifixion by Giov: du Bologna, a wonderful pope’s vestment of humming birds’ feathers (!) etc.
Sydney photographed the hadsome [sic] & gorgeous dressed custodian of palace.
Drove, again over Ponte Vecchio, from wh. we now had picturesque views, to restaurant?Tazza d’Oro in Via di’Calzaioloi, where we
Drove to San Miniato. This drive was, the whole way, wonderfully beautiful - views of Florence, mountains, trees, etc etc., brilliant sunshine, blue sky & clouds.
Views from San Miniato itself - Went in the church - very beautiful & interesting (11th cent-) green marble - (classical). Tuscan Romanesque - Many lovely things in it - especially crypt, where they were un-covering frescoes from plaster, lovel Very fine old pulpit (ivory ? & mosaic) & screen, some works by della Robia, old mosaic in choir Monument by An: Rossellino, frescoes by Spinello Aretino (Life of St. Benedict) in sacristy - but the general architecture of church (& façade) I liked, perhaps, best of all.
Driving back we stopped at the large "Piazale Michelangelo", & walked
round it to see the wonderful panorama of Florence & its surroundings.
Soon it began to rain & then to pelt.
Went into the baptistery. Very dark, but, by aid of tapers, saw chiefly tomb of dethroned Pope John XXIII (Baldasare Cossa) by Donatello & Michelozzo, old font, Mary Magdalen, in wood, by Donatello (v. fine).
Looked at bronze door by Andrea Pisano on S. side, the earliest of the 3 (1336), & possibly the most beautiful.
As it was pouring, drove to hotel, bought cakes & chestnuts & made tea in bedroom. Bought photos at Sborgi.
Diary & read Symonds on Michelangelo.
Friday Jan: 4th
Mother ricked her neck while dressing in morning.
A bright, sunny day.
Went first to Santa Maria Novella, the church of which we had not yet seen properly. Liked best Oregna’s frescoes in Strozzi chapel (beautiful Last Judgement & Paradise - Hell inferior & by Andrea’s brother) - Liked also - Filippino Lippis in 2nd Strozzi chapel, but less than most of his work, also Cimabues Mad:, monument by Murano, crucifix by Brunellischi, a 15th cent: frescoe of annunciation near door, & Trinity by Masacio. The Ghirlandajo frescoes were unfortunately covered hidden by scaffolding for restoration.
Went into picturesque courtyard, but
not Spanish chapel.
Drove to Santa Croce. Very interesting 13th cent: (no side chapel, only in choir), the pantheon of Italy - Tombs (un Here are buried, Michael Angelo (by Vasari), Macchiavelli, widow of young pretender, Gallileo all very ugly. Very fine pulpit by Beneditto da Maiano (reliefs), monument to Bruni by Rosselino, several memorial slabs of men with books & arms crossed on [carpet] (one described by Rustin), Mad: & child by Rossellino - Numerous frescoes, everywhiere, the plastered are walls are being gradually uncovered & it is found that the walls in reality are entirely covered by frescoes. Annunciation by Donatello, frescoes by Tadeo Gaddi (life of Virgin) in cappella Baroncelli, the finest frescoes (among many) are those by Giotto (capelle Peruzzi & Bardi) of lifes of St. John & St. Francis.
Liked best - Herodias’ daughter presenting head of St. John to her mother, acent into heaven of St. John, raising of Drusiana, St. Francis before the Sultan, interesting contemporary portrait of St Louis. Interesting story of cross series by Agrola Gaddi. Fine tomb of monument by Seltizmanos - many other interesting frescoes.
Met Misses Bishop, Lousada & Styer.
Very intelligent guide who spoke good English.
Went into Cappella di Pazzi by Brunelleschi, Angel frieze by Donatello & Settignano & decorations by Della Robbia, capella de' Medici - marble ciborium by Mino da Fiesole, works by the della Robbia (especially that over altar) Also a coronation of Virgin by Giotto, wh: did not care for. Sacristy - Intarsia work on stalls by Giov: di Michele etc - lovely iron railing - chapel by Reniucini - frescoes of life of Virgin by G.da Milano, old altar piece.
There were also
some good statues,
etc, but I always
only mention my
Drove Opera del Duomo, containing the beautiful singing galleries by Donatello & Della Robbia. We liked that of Della Robbia best. The singing & dancing children are quite delightful. The 2 end panels are hung low on wall. Also magnificent silver altar from Baptistery, frame especially beautiful - sculpted panels of different dates, life of St John, all fine.
Next looked at lowest row of panels on Giotto’s tower - most beautiful . Also Ghiberti’s 2 bronze gates of Baptistry & that by Andrea Pisano.
Lunch at restaurant Etruria in Via de’ Calzaioli.
San Lorenzo - church renaissance contains - 2 pulpits (bronze & wood) by
Donatello & his pupils, Marble slab where are buried Raimo Pater Palriae & Donatello, annunciation by Lippo Lippi, platin cantoria by Donatello, fine but without [ ].
Old sacristy (Bruneleschi) - many works by Donatello, sig among them - bronze doors - monuments of the medici, bust of St. Lawrence, frieze of cherubs - Under table fine monument of Giov: da Medici & wife (parents of Cosimo I) by Donatello. Next to gorgeous Cappella dei Principe, late renaissance & then to the New sacristy, designed by Michelangelo & containing his wonderfully beautiful Medici tombs (Guiliano & Lorenzo statues of Day & Night, Evening & Dawn) with wh: I was immensely impressed.
Mother’s neck being v. bad she returned home with Sydney.
Father & I drove to the boundary of Florence & Bella Sguardo, stopping at
church of Carmini, where we were joined by Miss Slyer. In Brancacci chapel interesting frescoes by Masolino, Filippino Lippi & Masaccio.
Walked up hill to Miss Bishop at Bella Sguarda - Lovely views on the way & from their roof. Father photographed. Tea with 2 Miss Bishops, Misses Lousader & Styer. Rained, so telephoned for carriages & drove home. Had stopped raining before carriage arrived.
Bought P.card at Barocchi in Via Panzani.
Evening read Prayers, wrote diary & read Browning.
Saturday Jan 5th
A most beautiful day with brilliant sunshine & blue sky, tho’ rather cold wind.
Went first to church of Or San Michele, interesting architecturally & containing the magnificent and beautiful tabernacle by Andrea Oreagna - most elaborate & the finest thing of the kind I have seen.
Looked at statues outside - liked especially St. Mark by Donatello.
Next to the Bargello - Beautiful courtyard. Among so much it is very difficult to pick out a short list, but I must notice Michael Angelo’s "Dying Adonis", Brutus (bust), Mad: & child, &, not quite so much, Bacchus, Donatello, St George, relief of baby St. John, St. John in desert (ascetic), & bust of old woman, & not quite so much, David & coloured bust competition panels for
bronze gates (Abraham’s sacrifice of Isaac) by Ghiberti & Bruneleschi, Ben: Cellini’s Ganymede, studies for Perseus etc, crucifixion by Donatello, Giov: da Bologna’s Mercury, Some delightful Madonnas, & terracotas, by Lucia & Andrea della Robbia, cared less for those by Giov: dellaR. Some busts by Rosellino & 2 by Civitali - interesting early relief by by Verrochio etc etc. Fresco, attributed to Giotto, containing famous portrait of Dante. Did not spend long over [various peti].
Looked into the Dadia (during service) to see again Filippino Lippi’s vision of St Bernard.
Lunch at La Toscana, Via di’ Calzaioli. Went for the second time to the Uffizi & stayed till 4, when it closes.
The following are some of my favourites, but the list is very unsatisfactory, as
here, even more than at the Bargello, must I leave out many that I like almost as much as those mentioned:-
Portraits of artists by themselves - Romney (Angelica Kauffman) , Luke Kranach, Mdme le Brun, Leonardo da Vinci.
Hugh VanderGoest - triptych of Ad: of Shepherds, Memling - portrait of man reading. Durer - portrait of his father, & Ad: of Magi, old man (St. James!) - portraits by Kranach, Ruysdael landscape - Triptych of Ad: of Magi by Mantegna, Titian’s Venus, Piera Francia, portrait of young man ( Elizabeth duchess of Urbino) Raphael, portrait of young woman, Corregio Mad: & child (in Tribune), Raphael Madonna del Cardellino, Fra Angelico - Coronation of Virgin, also 3 little pictures, Masaccio head of old man, Filippo Lippi Ad: of Magi, Andrea del Sarto Mad: & Saints, (Fra. Bartolomo, Virgin enthroned),
Albertinelli Visitation (the best I have seen of him). Sodoma St Sebastian (fair) Don Lorenzo Monaco - coronation of Virgin (interesting),
Botticelli’s Fortitude, Judith & Holophernes, Calumny, adoration of Magi, portrait of Medalist, Birth of Venus, Madonna & child & angels + del Magnificat, Virgin & child, Leonardo da Vincii - Ad: of Magi (unfinished) - Leonardo? Annunciation, Ghirlandajo Ad: of Magi, Lippo Lippi , Mad: & child & 2 angels (smiling), Lorenzo di Credi Annunciation, Filippino Lippi Mad. & child, Perugino Signorelli Crucifixion with saints (v. interesting), Titian - Virgin & child & St. Catherine with pomegranate, Moroni portrait
(Portrait of Duke of Urbino) Bellini - Virgin & saints with landscape (unusual
conception), Giorgoni - 2 interesting pictures painted when he was 17, of Moses and & rdeal of fire, judgment of Soloman, Titian, Virgin & child with St. John presenting flowers & with other Stsin, Giorgione, Knight of Malta.
Looked well also at drawings, some are beautiful, liked especially - one by Tadeo Gaddi, some by Fra. Angelico, Botticelli’s own portrait, a head by Filippino Lippi & Filippo Lippi, 2 female heads by Leonardo, (especially one of them, some by Perugino (especially monk (saint), one by Michelangelo, Bellini, 3 Georgione etc.
Of sculptures, liked many of the antique ones wh. I will not enumerate, except to mention the Niobe group - also Michelangelo’s David.
Had dinner at 5 with Miss (Franusa) Alexander & talked afterwards
They have some
very nice old pictures
& china, & were
with her & her mother (a wonderful old lady of 93) - both were most charming & delightful.
Evening - wrote diary.
Cold & frosty,
but one of the
finest days we
have had, deep,
sky & brilliant
Sunday - January 6th 1907
Today, being a "fiesta (of epiphany), all the galleries were closed , & there was service in most of the churches.
Drove first to the Carmine church, & looked more thoroughly at the very fine frescoes by Masolino, Masaccio & Filippino Lippi, in the Brancacci chapel. V. interesting to see birth of "modern" Italian renaissance art in Masaccio.
Next went to the church of San Spirito (met Miss Styer on the way, who went with us for rest of the day). Fine Renaissance architecture by Bruneleschi (not too over decorated). Tomb by Rosselino & 2 pictures wh. I liked immensely - Mad: with 2 saints by Filippino Lippi, & Trinity with St Catherine & Magdalen by an unknown artist.
Crossed the Arno (back) to St. Trinita - good early gothic architecture. The chief thing in the church (besides 1 or 2 fine tombs & altar by Sansovino & Rosselino) are a pai series of frescoes of life of St. Francis by Ghirlandajo. Not very easy to see.
Next to the church of Ognissanti, but good could not see it as there was a service.
Hired a carriage & double Victoria (fly) & drove to Fiesole.
Lovely views - Mountains - Florence etc. Turquoise blue sky, cypresses, olives (with ripe, purple fruit - picked some) - hedge of pink roses near Fiesole - some Spanish elder, arbutus in flower & fruit etc. Passed historical places - scene of Pazzi conspiracy etc.
Got out to see Fra Angelico’s [ ] at St. Domenico. Fine painting of Mad: with saints by F. Ang: with background by Lorenzo di Credi & a baptism of
Christ by Lorenz: di Credi.
Walked, a little way of the main road, to ch: of Bardia (Bruneleschi - with small romanesque façade as a sort of screen on the wall). Lovely view from platform in front - scene of "platonic academy" frequented by Pico della Mirandola.
At Fiesole had lunch at Albergo - Ristorante Aurora.
Went to ruins (fairly extensive) of Roman amphitheatre, baths etc. Lovely view over mountains. Mother & Sydney did not go to this & we met them in the cathedral. Very simple early Tuscan Romanesque - fine (simple) capitals & crypt.
Sarcophagus by Mino da Fiesole very fine. Walked up the hill to the platform opposite convent monastery of St. Francesca, & sat down to look at the beautiful view of the valley of Florence & the
Equally lovely views on drive back. (diff. way). Stopped at ch. of Ognissanti - Lunette over door by Giov: della Robbia, inside frescoes - 2 of interest St. Augustine by Botticelli (very fine) & St Jerome by Ghirlandajo. Refectory was closed.
Miss Styer left us & we walked back to the hotel, stopping to look once more at Andrea della Robbia’s "meeting of St .Francis & St. Dominic outside on Loggia di San Paolo.
Bought chestnuts & made tea, as usual, in bedroom.
Read Vasari (Miss Luly’s edit:), wrote to Miss Mason.
After dinner wrote diary.
Read Ruskin on Santa Croce.
(I write for
more or less in
order of rooms,
not at all of
Monday Jan: 7th /07
Another fine, cold day.
Drove for the second time to the Innocenti - Saw babies della Robbia babies & Annunciation & Ghirlandajo's Adoration of the Magi. Our view hindered by erection for fiesta in front of picture.
To the Academia di Belle Arte (Father went to Etruscan museum & joined us later). Spent some time over Fra Angelico's. Nice official in room who, seeing, as he thought, we were studying them, provided us with information, steps to climb on & lens.
Our favourite pictures were -
Perugino - Portraits of a monks, Pieta (fairly), Christ on Mount of Olives, Decent from cross (fairly), Lippo Lippi Coronation of Virgin.
Andrea del Sarto - 2 litle angels (fairly), Verocchio’s baptism of Christ, with 2 angels said by Vasari to be by Leonardo was interesting, Lippo Lippi Mad: adoring Christ, annunciation with Sts John & Anthony (in 3 panels, each separate small figures), Botticelli - Spring, Filippino Lippi’s & Perugino (interesting) decent from cross, Botticelli Mad: enthroned with saints (some of the figures), - Gentile da Fabriano - Ad: of Magi,Ghirlandajo - Ad: of shepherds - - Fra Angelico’s Last Judgment (especially the Paradise) & nearly all of his smll pictures, wh. we looked at carefully, but wh are too numerous to mention - especially series of lives of Cosmo & Damias & Life of Christ - especially Annuncation, Flight into Egypt,Judas receiving
Circumcision, & many journey to Calvary, Christ decent into Hades, small Last Judgment & many more. Michelangelo’s David.
To the Ricardi Palace again to see once more the lovely Benozzo Gozzoli frescoes.
Walked to the Cenacolo di Fuligno (via Faenza) to see the beautiful Last Supper frescoe by an unknown artist of school of Perugino. Has been attributed to Perugino, Raphael &, more more likely Gerino da Pistoja.
Lunch Looked at outside of campanile & lunch at Toscana.
Mother & I drove to Michelangelo’s house & others went to Uffizi -
House not of much interest, tho' containing a few unimportant models & sketches.
To Pitti gallery - Favourite
pictures were - Titian. Christ, Raphael La Donna Gravida & del Sarto Assumption (all fairly) - Titian - portrait of Cardinel Ippolita, Titian or Giorgione - Concert,
Raphael - portraits of Angiolo & Maddalena Doni (especially first), Cardinal Inghirami, Madonna della Sedia, Mad: del Granduca - A. del Sarto - Disputa sulla Trinita (liked the colouring) Perugino - entombment desent from cross, Vas Titian’s - Bella, Fra Bartolomeo - Pieta Raphael - La Donna Velatu, Lorenzo Lotto (3.) - 3 ages of man life, Titian - Portrait of young Englishman, Vandyck - Cardinal Giulio Bentivoglio, Raphael - Pope Julius II, Rembrant portrait of the artist, Raphael Pope Lio X with cardinals Giulio di’Medici ,
& Ludovico di’ Rossi - Rubens, Landscape, 4 Philosophers, Titian - Pietro Aretino, Lippo Lippi, [round] Mad & child with annunciation in background, Botticini? - Mad adoring child with angels in rose garden,
Botticelli? - LasBella Simonetta, FraAngelico - Ruysdael Landscape, Fra Angelico - 2 little pictures, several pictures of Fra Bartolomeo I liked for colour.
After seeing the Pitti Mother home to change in order to speak on P.N.E.U. at a Mrs Gates. We walked to Cantagalii shop in Via Senese to get some china.
Drove to tea at "Neveux et Doney", via Tornabuoni 16 & then bought photos at Allinari, via Strozzi. Evening - arranged photos etc.
*by Lippo Lippi
Tuesday - Jan: 8th 1907
Went first to the Spanish chapel.
Trained to Prato, glorious weather and lovely mountain views from train.
Prato is a queer, interesting little town, West at wh: Filippo Lippi & Lucretia Buti lived. Went first to cathedral. Fine old early Tuscan Romanesque (Giov: Pisano in 14th cent, begun 12th ) - Also campanile. Very fine pulpit outside, with dancing children by Donatello & Michelozzo. Inside are frescoes (not in good preservation) by Anolo Gaddi, screened enclosed by beautiful bronze screen, In choir are extremely beautiful series of*
frescoes of Lives of St John the Baptist & St. Stephen. That of Dance of daughter of Herodias particularly fine. Generally very dark, but light today was excellent. However, owing to insane
Mino da Fiesole
(base) & Ant: Rosill
& picture of Virgin St. Lucy by Filippino
in bishop’s palace.
arrangement of awning & panels, all the lower part of bottom frescoes were boarded up & the others c’d only be seen by standing on altar.
Next, with little boy for guide, to ch. of San Ludovico with Andrea Della Robbia Madona.
Sydney left had his camera stolen while left on altar in cath: & most of the rest of time in Prato spent in vain enquiries etc for it - 5f reward was offered - we suspected sacristan.
While S. looking in cath: we waited in ch. - many little girls came in, bowed before altar, & looked at us. (Holiday : . queen’s birthday).
Lunch at hotel - discussed affair of camera Kodak with waiter proprietor (?) who spoke French. With an old man to show us the way, went to police,
then to fine early renaissance ch of Madonna delle Carceri (Andrea della R. reliefs) - then to a little tabernacle in the street with beautiful picture of Mad: & saints by Filippino Lippi. Amusing crowds of men, women & children gathering round us to be photographed & when father was photographing "[picleerus]", women straw platters. Women washing, men carding wool (spread it over the whole piazza). Made enquiries again at police - interrogation of a boy & custodian etc - Trained to Florence - young German sculptor travelling in Italy with us in train.
To ch refectory of Ognissanti to see Ghirlandajo "Last Supper" - not particularly good, but his frescoes of St Jerome &, especially, Botticelli’s St Augustine in church were very fine. Tea at another
confectioners in Via Tornabuoni.
Bought photos & p.cs at Alinari (with Mother) (via Strozzi) & Pineider, via Piazza Signoria (very good - carbon [?] - & cheap but shop badly managed).
Said goodbye to Mrs & Miss Alexander, who gave Mother luncheon basket & will is to give us one tomorrow evening, div helped Mother pack (she is very tired) & wrote diary & arranged photos.
Wednesday - Jan 9th 1907
Another fine, bright day.
Packed, & then drove (Mother & I, the others met us later) to Sante Croce & looked again at Giotto’s frescoes.
Walked back to the Piazza del Duomo, looking, on our way, for the 3rd & last time, at the Filippino Lippi frescoe picture (Vision of St. Bernard) in the Badia.
Father went to see about luggage & we 3 looked at outside of cathedral, went inside it & baptistery. The difference in the light from this & the last time we were there was extraordinary. Could see well the fine early mosaics in baptistry.
Saw Mother off by 12 o’clock train. She is to stay with Lady
Sydney, Father & I
McIvor at Beaulieu is S. France for 2 nights (will sleep Wed: night at Genoa) & arrives London Sunday evening.
Lunch at Toscana. Bought photos & p.cs at [sic] , Pineider & Alinari.
Left for Milan Paid goodbye visit (S & I, Father was at station, having done so before us) to Mrs & Miss Alexander who showed us a few of their pictures (v little time) & gave us a dinner basket (had done the same for Mother) wh. proved most useful, for tea dinner tea on Thursday & Father’s Friday tea. They have, among other pictures, 2 sculptured reliefs by Rosselino & Benedetto da Majano, 4 Giotto heads (probably originally stolen from S. Maria Novella) &, most beautiful, Mad: &
child by Gentile da Fabriano & same subject by Filippino Lippi.
Left for Milan by 3 o’clock train. Rather nice lady - Miss Mason(!) - travelled with us. Scenery especially at & after Pistoia, until dark, very fine.
Arrived Milan about 12.p.m (train over 1 hr. late).
Stayed Palace Hotel near station, hot & large.
Had left lost opera glasses & wrote to Hotel Minerva about them.
Thursday - January 10th 1907.
Milan is a very modern town, with tramways everywhere.
Breakfast in bed.
Tram to cathedral - very large & spacious, but not much to our taste - some fine old things in treasury.
Next, always by tram, to the ch. of Santa Maria della Grazie, passing the castle of the Sforzas.
Went into the Monastery, where is the famous Last Supper fresco by Leonardo da Vinci - in bad condition, but still exceedingly beautiful.
In the church, by Bramante, with handsome dome, are frescoes by Ferrari & Fappa.
Next to S. Maurizio (walked) a
church adorned with numerous beautiful frescoes by Luini - (including in "Nuns choir", behind church). Walked along triforium gallery to see lovely series of medalions of lovely female holy women by Boltraffio.
Next tram to Brera gallery, where we spend about 1 3/4 hrs.
Favourite pictures were -
[diary ends abruptly]
Transcribed by Dr. Linnet McMahon
Webbed by Craig Fees