Traditions

Peace and Goodwill in Assisi

“Pax et bonum” (“peace and goodwill”), San Francesco to the townspeople as he wandered the labyrinthine Assisi backstreets preaching in the early 13th- century. His greeting lives on in the town.

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Assisi Roofs Topped with Sculptures?

Yes, those chimneys! It takes skill to build a fireplace which draws well, sending the smoke up the chimney, rather than into the living room. Just imagine: the chimneys standing proudly on Assisi rooftops are outlets for well-built fireplaces in the houses below – yet each one is a mini-architectural masterpiece in its own right.

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The Sign of an Umbrian November? Chestnuts!

“Nel tempo delle castagne il porco ride e la pecora piange” (“At chestnut time, the pig laughs and the sheep weeps”), says an Italian proverb. Yes, the pigs relish the earthy goodness of chestnuts, but the flavor is not enticing to a sheep. For me, the rich taste of roasted chestnuts is a sign of autumn about to slip away, winter creeping in. When the weather chills in Umbria, the rural people gather around their woodstoves at night.

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