One of the must see around Pesaro is certainly Gradara, a pleasant small borough on top of a hill, a typical medieval town bordering with Emilia Romagna. In fact though, Gradara is not purely medieval, as most of the Castle was remodeled in the 1920′s by its last owner, Umberto Zanvettori, who brought in his taste for liberty and art déco, turning the once medieval Castle, so famous for being mentioned in the Divine Comedy, into a masterpiece between decadentism and exoterism. One of the first impressions I had upon entering was a particular resemblance to the mansion of Gabriele D’Annunzio on the Garda Lake, in the north of Italy. Only the legend is left of the story of Paolo and Francesca, the two characters which Dante mentions in the Divina Commedia, the rest is much more recent history, between 1921 and 1923, when the Castle was rapidly restored and its contents, mainly ancient weapons, sold to Castel Sant’Angelo, the former Vatican prison which faces Saint Peter’s church in Rome…
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