The English Romantic age in Rome

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The English Romantic age in Rome


Maximum number of tourists: 6
Price per tour: 280 USD
Duration: 4 hours
Distance: 0 km
Tour by: Francesca Troilo (Date: 10.04.2012)

Tour description

“It may make one in love with death, to think that one should be buried in so sweet a place.” This is what Shelley remarked about the Protestant Cemetery by the Pyramid of Caius Cestius – the latter one of the most famous landmarks in the south-western suburbs of Rome that amazed all Grand Tour travellers.
In the 1700s, Papal Rome was visited by more and more North European well-to-do travellers and had several Protestant residents: ambassadors, members of the clergy, part of the court of James Stuart who lived as an exile in Rome. Consequently the need arose to give them a decent burial place outside the Aurelian Walls, as the Papal law prescribed for the non-Catholic. The appeal of the Pyramid as a melancholic yet appeasing memento mori made the plane of Testaccio – once used for the Carnival “corrida style” games – the perfect spot elected by the Protestant community of artists and aristocrats for their last sleep. The “bright star” of the cemetery is John Keats, who spent the last three months of his life in Rome, trying to recover from tubercolosis, of which he died at only 25 in 1821. Shortly afterwards Percy B. Shelley joined him: his heart was buried at the foot of an ivy draped wall, after he drowned in a shipwreck off the Tuscan coast in 1822. We also find Joseph Severn's tomb: he escorted Keats to Rome and then returned to Eternal City as British consul in 1861; he wanted to rest by his long regretted friend and was buried next to him when he died in 1879.
To learn more about the “Romantic Connection” in Rome we can move on to the Spanish Steps and visit the apartments where Keats and Severn lived in 1821. The house was bought by an Anglo-American-Italian committee decided to save the place from disruption and turned into a museum and library. 8000 volumes, the last drawing of Keats by Severn, Lord Byron's Carnival wax mask, John Milton's locks and many more relics await your inspection.
After the tour you'll surely need to comfort yourself with a nice strong cup of tea: walk to the other side of the Spanish Steps and slip in at Babington's Tea Room. Funded by Miss Isabel Cargill and Miss Anna Maria Babington in 1893, it made available to the English residents the precious “drug”
- i.e. tea- which was sold only at chemists' at the time!

Please note: not on Sunday.
Transport not included.
Entrance fees not included (EU 3 at the Protestant Cemetery, EU 4,50 at the Keats&Shelley Memorial House).
Tea at Babington's not included.

Keywords (tags), separate by comma: Testaccio, Shelley, Romanticism, Pyramid, Keats

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