Piazza dei Martiri in the very heart of Naples, originally dedicated to Santa Maria a Cappella, named later as Piazza della Pace, became Piazza dei Martiri in united Italy…
The square and the monument are particularly significant symbolizing the unification of Italy in 1861. The column was already there, redesigned with the bronze statue Virtue of the Martyrs by E. Caggiano and the four lions represent the Neapolitans who sacrificed their lives for the liberation from the Bourbons: “Alla gloriosa memoria dei cittadini napoletani che caduti nelle pugne o sul patibolo rivendicarono al popolo la libertà di proclamare con patto solenne ed eterno il plebiscito del XXI ottobre MDCCCLX – Il Municipio Consacra”
I took this photo on a lovely morning thinking of the verses that young Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792 – 1822) wrote in his “Ode to Naples” :
Naples! thou Heart of men which ever pantest
Naked, beneath the lidless eye of Heaven!
Elysian City, which to calm enchantest
The mutinous air and sea! they round thee, even
As sleep round Love, are driven!
Metropolis of a ruined Paradise
Long lost, late won, and yet but half regained!
Bright Altar of the bloodless sacrifice
Which armed Victory offers up unstained
To Love, the flower-enchained!
Thou which wert once, and then didst cease to be,
Now art, and henceforth ever shalt be, free,
If Hope, and Truth, and Justice can avail,–
Hail, hail, all hail!
Naples… Napoli, la citta’ che adoro!
Further reading on this blog about Naples (Tag: Naples):