Bergamo’s beautiful upper town, the Città Alta (pictured above), is a magical place well worth visiting. Use this website to help you plan your trip to Bergamo in Northern Italy and find your way to some of the other lovely towns and villages in Lombardia that are perhaps less well known to tourists.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Lovely Lecco – immortalised by novelist Manzoni

Lago di Lecco
The town of Lecco on Lago di Lecco (Lake Lecco) is an easy day trip from Bergamo.
There are regular, direct trains, which take 40 minutes, and good road links.
Lago di Lecco is an arm of Lago di Como and is surrounded by dramatic mountain scenery so stunning that it is said to have inspired Leonardo da Vinci.
Lecco is also famous for being the childhood home of novelist Alessandro Manzoni, who set his great work, I Promessi Sposi (The Betrothed) here.
Manzoni died aged 88 on 22 May 1873. But 137 years later, fans of the novel are still visiting Lecco to see the buildings and settings he described.
Manzoni’s novel was the first major work to be written in a modern Italian that could be understood by everyone, causing a sensation when it was first published in 1825. It looked at Italian history through the eyes of the ordinary citizen and sparked pro-unification feelings in many Italians who read it.
I Promessi Sposi is now considered to be the most important novel in Italian literature and is still required reading for Italian schoolchildren.
If you visit the Ufficio Informazione Turistiche (Tourist Information Office) in Via Sauro, the staff will give you a free map of Lecco with places mentioned in the novel marked on it, such as Lucia’s house, Don Rodrigo’s castle and the marriage church.  For more information visit www.turismo.provincia.lecco.it.
Manzoni was born in Milan and spent the later years of his life living there, in the house pictured below. He died after suffering a fall on the steps of the San Fedele church. His tomb is in the Cimitero Monumentale in Milan.

Manzoni's house in Milan

Language point          I Promessi Sposi

I Promessi Sposi created expressions, quotes and names that are still commonly used in Italian today, the most famous being: “Questo matrimonio non s’ha da fare…” (This marriage is not to be performed...).
This famous quote from the novel is still regularly used by Italians ironically when they are talking about weddings.


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