Italy: Naples raises its voice to defend its rights over San Gennaro

I wrote this piece in March 2016. It gives the history of San Gennaro, the patron saint of Naples, and covers the storm that raged over the threat to the city’s custody of the saint.

The Phraser

Mural of San Gennaro near the Duomo in Naples, Italy Mural of San Gennaro near the Duomo in Naples, Italy

A threat has been made to the heart of an old city, to a unique relationship between the people and their saint.  The partnership has lasted through centuries of invasion, violence, disease and volcanic turbulence … but now bureaucracy wants its say.

The challenge is to the arrangements in place for the care of the patron saint of Naples, San Gennaro, and his glittering collection of treasure.

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Sea cats around the Bay of Naples, Italy

I published this post on The Phraser at the end of February 2016. February is a grand time to be on the Bay of Naples. The sun might not always be there, and it might be chilly, but there’s always coffee and plenty to explore … plus, of course, you’re bound to bump into a cat.

The Phraser

By the old fishing harbour in Pozzuoli, near Naples, Italy By the old fishing harbour in Pozzuoli, near Naples, Italy

Last week a bonny, blond portrait painter came to stay.  We took her to see the sights: old fishing harbours; castles; artworks; views; and we fended off the men … but it was the cats that caught her eye.

I looked where she looked – this is for her.

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Ferry trip from Pozzuoli to Ischia and back

A look back (first published 24 July 2015): the Bay of Naples is so crammed with history and legend it’s hard to know where to start – this is an attempt.

The Phraser

Ferry to Ischia with Procida in the foreground Ferry to Ischia with Procida in the foreground

Islands are impossible to resist.   Sit for just one pizza on the seafront in the Bay of Naples and you’ll feel the pull. Capri is the big magnet but swing your eyes to the other side, away from the Sorrentine Peninsular to the opposite end of the bay, and you see Ischia with little Procida tucked between it and the mainland.

Our trip was to Ischia by ferry – a brief journey to join an afternoon sail.

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San Gennaro and the saints process through Naples, Italy

San Gennaro under escort through Naples, Italy

San Gennaro, his blood, and the saints process under escort through Naples, Italy

In Naples the less usual is everywhere.

A few weeks ago it was San Gennaro, his blood, and a selection of saints, who added the extraordinary as they were carried shoulder high in procession through the city’s streets from the cathedral to the church of Santa Chiara.

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Italy: Naples raises its voice to defend its rights over San Gennaro

Mural of San Gennaro near the Duomo in Naples, Italy

Mural of San Gennaro near the Duomo in Naples, Italy

A threat has been made to the heart of an old city, to a unique relationship between the people and their saint.  The partnership has lasted through centuries of invasion, violence, disease and volcanic turbulence … but now bureaucracy wants its say.

The challenge is to the arrangements in place for the care of the patron saint of Naples, San Gennaro, and his glittering collection of treasure.

Continue reading

Sea cats around the Bay of Naples, Italy

By the old fishing harbour in Pozzuoli, near Naples, Italy

By the old fishing harbour in Pozzuoli, near Naples, Italy

Last week a bonny, blond portrait painter came to stay.  We took her to see the sights: old fishing harbours; castles; artworks; views; and we fended off the men … but it was the cats that caught her eye.

I looked where she looked – this is for her.

Continue reading

Ferry trip from Pozzuoli to Ischia and back

Ferry to Ischia with Procida in the foreground

Ferry to Ischia with Procida in the foreground

Islands are impossible to resist.   Sit for just one pizza on the seafront in the Bay of Naples and you’ll feel the pull. Capri is the big magnet but swing your eyes to the other side, away from the Sorrentine Peninsular to the opposite end of the bay, and you see Ischia with little Procida tucked between it and the mainland.

Our trip was to Ischia by ferry – a brief journey to join an afternoon sail.

Continue reading