Tibur Superbum. Tivoli.

In the I century b.C. Tivoli was already chosen by the roman senators as a vacation spot for its lovely climate, and its richness in water and greenery. The Emperor Hadrian gave himself a retirement mansion, a stunning and impressive proof of the roman architecture in the II century a.C.. The Hadrian's Villa is a Unesco site, 120he of excavations: ruins of palaces, gardens, statues and fountains. After more than a thousand years, in 1550, Cardinal Ippolito d'Este became Governor of the City of Tivoli. He wanted for himself the same treatment of the Pope, his grandfather Alexander VI Borgia: so he projected, together with the architect Pirro Ligorio, one of the first examples of Renaissance Villa, Villa d'Este, with its hanging gardens and musical fountains. Besides the magnificent Villa, the medieval city was troubled by the perpetual and destructive floodings of the Aniene river, passing right in the middle of the town, jumping into an high natural waterfall at the feet of the Temples of Vesta and Sibilla. In 1835 the Pope Gregorius XVI, with a huge, imposing and expensive project, drifted the river out of the city, creating a garden for the citizens where once the river flowed. And now Villa Gregoriana is a natural park into the gorge of the ancient waterfall, an exciting heritage of vegetation, archaeology and history.

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