CAPTIVATED BY THE ENCHANTMENT OF PIANOSA.
Saturday the 22ndof July, two members of Acqua dell’Elba’s Italian Community will be guests of the newspaper Il Tirreno on a ship taking a limited number of its readers to visit the most secret island of the Tuscan archipelago. If you would like to discover their names, Start following us on our Facebook Group or on this Instagram profile. In the meantime, let’s take a journey through the history of this island, whilst admiring its beautiful landscape.
PIANOSA AND CIRCE’S SORCERY
“So, we arrived upon the island of Ea: Circe of the beautiful curls lived there, a tremendous goddess with a human voice”. Visiting the island of Pianosa it’s not so hard to believe that for years, it was identified as the home of the powerful sorceress narrated by Homer in his Odyssey. The magic quality of its crystalline waters, the allure of its untamed nature, the enchantments whispered by the breeze moving its waves and the branches of the Mediterranean Maquis, the mysterious silence enveloping it constantly are all capable of captivating the soul of those who visit. This is only the case for very few lucky people, because the island and the area of sea surrounding it are completely protected by the National Park of the Tuscan Archipelago, which has made it a naturalistic reserve.
PIANOSA AND THE LABIRYNTH OF HISTORY.
Numerous kilometres of ancient Christian catacombs snaking their way underground represent the secret soul of an island which has always been desired and fought over by many peoples since ancient Roman times. The place of exile of Agrippa Postumus, the nephew of Augustus, it was later the object of a protracted conflict between Pisa and Genova, subsequently destroyed by the ottoman commander Dragut, then conquered by the French, until it was transformed into a place of detention by the newly formed Italian republic…A past which still shines through the local architecture for those visitors capable of reading its language, as it is illuminated by the Tyrrhenian sun.
PIANOSA AND THE JAIL.
Pianosa became a “penal agricultural colony” in 1865, and thus remained for over a century. Before the jail was finally closed in 1998, its walls hosted political prisoners as well as dangerous criminals and Mafiosi. Indeed, this was the very location where the man who would become probably the most beloved President of the Italian Republic’s history, Sandro Pertini, was confined between 1931 and 1935. We would also like to imagine that this tough, barren though beautiful island was the intended destination for the famous Doctor Lecter from “The Silence of the Lambs”, who just so happened to love Tuscany so much, when he requested a jail cell with a view over the sea.