Battle of Marciano, 2 August 1554
The battle of Marciano (2 August 1554) saw the active field army of Siena suffer a heavy defeat, allowing their Florentine enemies to focus all of their efforts on the siege of Siena.
Siena had expelled its Spanish garrison in the summer of 1552. Despite an agreement not to let any foreign troops into the city, the Sienese let in a French garrison and began to improve their defences. An early Imperial attempt to retake the city, using troops from Naples, failed at the start of 1553, and the city was given another year of peace.
Towards the end of 1554 Cosimo de Medici, rule of Florence, decided that Siena posed a threat to his rule, partly because of the efforts of the Florentine exile Pietro Strozzi, who was attempting to encourage a revolt against him. In November Cosimo agreed to attack Siena in a secret treaty with the Emperor Charles V.
Strozzi reached Siena in January 1554, just ahead of the Florentines. He then left the city to inspect the defences of the Republic, and during his absence the Florentines managed to capture one of the city gates. They were unable to hold onto their gains, and a long siege began.
Strozzi proved to be an expert at mobile warfare. His opponent, Gian Medecino, Marquis of Merignano, was a successful artillery general, but at first he was unable to cope with Strozzi's mobility. Strozzi had successful appealed to Henry II of France, who decided to send reinforcements to help the defenders and Blaise de Monluc to rule the city. Strozzi broke through the siege lines, advanced north, crossed the Arno just to the west of Florence, and joined up with the French reinforcements. He then eluded an Imperial trap near Pisa and moved south to gather more reinforcements at Piombino. He then moved east, before bringing 17,000 men into Siena from the south.
Strozzi's next plan was for an attack on Florence herself. He aimed to move north-east from Siena towards Arezzo and then advance north down the Arno towards Florence.
This time he was outfought by Merignano. Strozzi was able to get into the Chiani Valley, but he was unable to make any further progress.
A standoff developed near Marciano in the Chiani valley in which Strozzi's men came off worse. Merignano's men had the advantage of height and were able to keep up a damaging artillery bombardment of Strozzi's camp, and were also able to hit their one source of water. Strozzi decided to retreat, and sent some of his cannon on ahead of him.
Strozzi attempted to retreat during daylight on 2 August. Merignano took advantage of the retreat to attack, and inflicted a heavy defeat on the Sienese. Strozzi himself managed to escape from the battle, but the elimination of the Sienese field army meant that Merignano was able to concentrate all of his efforts on the siege of Siena. At first he expected an easy victory, as Strozzi wasn't expected to recover from his wounds and Monluc was ill, but both men recovered and the siege continued.
Monluc conducted a skilful defence of the city, but eventually starvation forced the citizens to surrender. The siege ended in April 1555, although Monluc himself refused to accept defeat and left the city before the final surrender. Siena was given to Florence, although the Emperor kept a number of the Republic's sea ports.
Vasari’s Rendition of the Battle of Marciano
In the 15 th century, Florence was the focal point of a cultural rebirth known famously as the Italian Renaissance. Their newfound economic and cultural power, coupled with the strong leadership of Cosimo de Medici of the Medici family, found Florence on the precipice of domination. With Cosimo I de Medici leading the way, Florence embarked on controlling its neighbors either through diplomacy or force, all under the name of the Duchy of Tuscany. There was one city-state remaining in the region that stood a chance against the growing power of the Duchy, and that was Siena. There was also a broader conflict between France and Spain that instigated the fighting. France supported Siena, because it wanted a strong ally on the Italian peninsula, and Spain supported Florence because of its wealth and its control over the majority of Tuscany, which Spain wanted a hand in. On August 2 nd 1551, a Florentine militia faced Sienese militia in the Battle of Marciano, the fight for control of the region. With each army reaching about 15,000 in number, the stage was set for a bloody day, but Florence won a sweeping victory, as their superior artillery simply overpowered the men of Siena and their allies. The Sienese suffered many losses in the form of death, wounds, and prisoners, while the Florentines, relatively speaking, did not lose many men. The battle undeniably had a great collective effect on the shaping of both cities well within the grips of the Renaissance. One of the tangible products of this effect plays a very important role in Robert Langdon’s quest in Dan Brown’s Inferno. The day of the battle, as a trophy of sorts, the Florentine soldiers collected over 100 green flags that the Sienese had been given by French royalty as a sign of support. After the battle was over, Cosimo I had Giorgio Vasari paint a large mural commemorating the battle inside a governmental Palace in Florence, the Hall of Five Hundred. Giorgio Vasari’s depiction of the Battle of Marciano hangs in that spot to this day. This painting, one of the best artistic achievements of the Renaissance, provides Langdon and Dr. Siena Brooks (who’s name is not a mere coincidence) with a major clue hidden within the painting. The phrase “cerca trova”, Latin for, “Seek and ye shall find”, can be seen on a green flag (one of the green flags the Florentines had seized) within the painting.
“Cerca trova” is one of the most prominent and important clues Langdon and Brooks come across throughout the novel. It appears in the very first chapter of the book, where a mysterious woman (eventually found to be WHO director Elisabeth Sinskey) appears to Langdon in a dream, reciting the English translation of the term. It later appears as an anagram, CATROVACER, in the first clue Langdon finds. The phrase itself, Seek and Ye Shall Find, is a biblical allusion (Matthew 7:7) that is actually a direct quote from Jesus Christ. That historical and religious connection provides a certain sense of importance, or gravity, to the phrase. Perhaps the reason the phrase “cerca trova” appears on a green flag in Vasari’s famed painting is a very minor allusion to Jesus’ bloodline in the Da Vinci Code. The green flags, a gift of the French, contains one of the only significant biblical references in the novel (of an author who usually creates his plots around controversial religious theory). In the Da Vinci Code, the eventual bloodline of Jesus Christ is believed (proven, within the context of the novel) to have ended up in a French family. Although a quotation of Jesus is a small connection, in the grand scheme of Dan Brown’s Inferno, it is one of the only biblical references Brown makes, which draws much more attention to it, especially considering the amount Brown relies on the Bible and Christianity in few of his other, more well known novels. The connection of “Cerca Trova” to Brown’s novel shows how intertwined Montaperti and Marciano are with both works of literature. Brown’s ability to intricately connect his novel with these important battles in history is perhaps his best feature as an author.
Santa Vittoria history
The cellar was built by the noble family of Mancini Griffoli at the end of 8th century.The cellar was built by the noble family of Mancini Griffoli at the end of 8th century.
The area is well suited to agriculture for thousands of years as evidenced by the remains of a Roman villa (loc. la Cisternella) visible to little more than a mile from the farm.
The Valdichiana up to was mostly covered by water, the hills emerged was therefore the place to build and cultivate the fertile lands for the people already pre Roman Empire, such as the Etruscans of which were found many tombs on the high street ranging from Foiano to Pozzo della Chiana.
In the XVI sec our Farm was the place where happened the Scannagallo Battle. You can see a big fresco made by Giorgio Vasari in Palazzo vecchio in Florence about this battle.
The Battle of Marciano (also known as the Battle of Scannagallo) occurred in the countryside of Marciano della Chiana, near Arezzo, Tuscany, on August 2nd of 1554, during the Italian War of 1551. The battle marked the defeat of the Republic of Siena in its war against the Duchy of Florence, and resulted in Siena losing its independence and being absorbed into the Grand Duchy of Tuscany.
In the 80s the Niccolai family bought the farm and starts hard work of reorganization of the farm, particularly vineyards.
Today the vineyards extend over 35 hectares and are home to many varieties including some ancient indigenous grapes varieties red recovered in recent years such as the Fogliatonda and Pugnitello.
We spent lots of enrgy in research has great importance for the development of the quality of wines and agricultural products. We cooperate with the CRA (Agricolture research center) doing yearly sperimentation focused on wine making and grapes. The entire winemaking process from grapes to bottling and labelling is done by ourself in the cellar.The winery Valdichiana 500 years ago Mancini Griffoli family
our vineyards in January inside the winery The cellar
Winery interior Under the roof Vin santo barrel
Vinsantaia Changing barrel Tasting Table
Tastng room Prof Storchi from CRA Pugnitello new Rosé tasting
Scannagallo reanaction club Scannagallo reenactment in the winery Scannagallo reenactment in the winery
Scannagallo reenactment in the winery Scannagallo reenactment in the winery Scannagallo reenactment in the winery
Scannagallo reenactment in Pozzo Scannagallo reenactment in Pozzo
Following the Wars in Lombardy between Venice and Milan, which ended in 1454, Northern Italy had been largely at peace during the reigns of Cosimo de&rsquo Medici and Lorenzo de&rsquo Medici in Florence, with the notable exception of the War of Ferrara in 1482–1484.
Charles VIII of France improved relations with other European rulers in the run up to the First Italian War by negotiating a series of treaties: in 1493, France negotiated the Treaty of Senlis with the Holy Roman Empire on 19 January 1493, France and the Crown of Aragon signed the Treaty of Barcelona and later in 1493, France and England signed the Treaty of Étaples.  
First Italian War of 1494–1498 or King Charles VIII&rsquos War
Ludovico Sforzaof Milan, seeking an ally against the Republic of Venice, encouraged Charles VIII of France to invade Italy, using the Angevin claim to the throne of Naples as a pretext. When Ferdinand I of Naples died in 1494, Charles VIII invaded the peninsula with a French Army  of twenty-five thousand men (including 8,000 Swiss mercenaries), possibly hoping to use Naples as a base for a crusade against the Ottoman Turks.  For several months, French forces moved through Italy virtually unopposed, since the condottieri armies of the Italian city-states were unable to resist them. Charles VIII made triumphant entries into Pisa on November 8, 1494, Florence on November 17, 1494,  and Rome on December 31, 1494.  Upon reaching the city of Monte San Giovanni in the Kingdom of Naples, Charles VIII sent envoys to the town and the castle located there to seek a surrender of the Neapolitan garrison. The garrison killed and mutilated the envoys and sent the bodies back to the French lines. This enraged the French army so that they reduced the castle in the town with blistering artillery fire on February 9, 1495 and stormed the fort, killing everyone inside.  This event was then called the sack of Naples. News of the French Army&rsquos sack of Naples provoked a reaction among the city-states of Northern Italy and the League of Venice was formed on March 31, 1495.
The League was specifically formed to resist French aggression. The League was established on 31 March after negotiations by Venice, Milan, Spain and the Holy Roman Empire.  Later on the League consisted of the Holy Roman Empire, the Duchy of Milan, Spain, the Papal States, the Republic of Florence, the Duchy of Mantua and the Republic of Venice. This coalition, effectively, cut Charles&rsquo army off from returning to France. After establishing a pro-French government in Naples, Charles started to march north on his return to France. However, in the small town of Fornovo he met the League army.
The battle of Fornovo was fought on July 6, 1495, after an hour the League&rsquos army was forced back across the Taro river while the French continued marching to Asti, leaving their carriages and provisions behind.  Francesco Guicciardini wrote that both parties strove to present themselves as the victors in that battle, but the eventual consensus was for a French victory, because the French repelled their enemies across the river and succeeded in moving forward, which was their reason for fighting in the first place.  In contemporary tradition, though, the battle counted as a Holy League victory, because the French forces had to leave and lost their provisions. To the Italian coalition, however, it was at best a pyrrhic victory, in that its strategic outcome and long-term consequences were unfavorable. Although the League managed to force Charles VIII off the battlefield, it suffered much higher casualties  and could not prevent the opposing army crossing the Italian lands as it returned to France.
As a result of Charles VIII&rsquos expedition, the regional states of Italy were shown once and for all to be both rich and comparatively weak, which sowed the seeds of the wars to come. In fact, the individual Italian states could not field armies comparable to those of the great feudal monarchies of Europe in numbers and equipment.
Meanwhile, in the Kingdom of Naples, after initial reverses, such as the disastrous defeat by the French at the Battle of Seminara on June 21, 1495, Ferdinand II, King of Naples, with the able assistance of the Spanish general Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba,  eventually reduced the French garrison in the Kingdom of Naples. Thus, Charles VIII lost all that he conquered in Italy. King Charles VIII died on April 7, 1498 and was succeeded to the throne of France by his cousin, Louis II, Duke of Orléans, who became Louis XII of France. 
Second Italian War or King Louis XII&rsquos War (1499–1504)
Ludovico Sforza retained his throne in Milan until 1499, when Charles&rsquos successor, Louis XII of France, invaded Lombardy  and seized Milan on September 17, 1499.  Louis XII justified his claim to the Duchy of Milan by right of his paternal grandfather, Louis duc d&rsquoOrléans having married Valentina Visconti in 1387. Valentina Visconti was the heir to the Duchy of Milan in the Visconti dynasty. The marriage contract between Valentina Visconti and Louis, duc d&rsquoOrléans, guaranteed that in failure of male heirs, she would inherit the Visconti dominions. However, when the Visconti dynasty died out in 1447, the Milanese ignored the Orleans claim to the Duchy of Milan and re-established Milan as a republic. However, bitter factionalismarose under the new republic which set the stage for Francesco Sforza(father of Ludovico Sforza) to seize control of Milan in 1450. 
Louis XII was not the only foreign monarch with dynastic ambitions in the Italian Peninsula. In 1496, while Charles VIII was living in France trying to rebuild his army, Maximilian I of the Holy Roman Empireinvaded Italy, to resolve the ongoing war between Florence and Pisa, called the « Pisan War ».  Pisa had been at war almost continually since the early 14th century. In 1406 after a long siege, Pisa fell under the control of the Florentine Republic.  When King Charles VIII of France, invaded Italy in 1494, the Pisans rose up against the Florentines and ousted them from Pisa and established Pisa as an independent republic again.  When the King Charles VIII and the French Army withdrew from Italy in 1495, the Pisans were not left to fight the Florentines alone. Much of northern Italy was suspicious of the rising power of Florence. Already during 1495, Pisa had received arms and money from the Republic of Genoa. Additionally, the republic of Venice and Milan supported Pisa by sending them cavalry and infantry troops. 
This was part of the ongoing conflict between Pisa and Florence that Emperor Maximilian vowed to resolve in 1496. Just as Ludovico Sforza had invited Charles VIII into Italy in 1494, now in 1496, he invited Maximilian I of the Holy Roman Empire into Italy to resolve the conflict between Pisa and Florence.  In the conflict between the Florentines and the Pisans, Sforza had favored the Pisans. In the eyes of Maximilian I and the Holy Roman Empire, the Pisan War was causing distractions and divisions within the members of the League of Venice. This was weakening the anti-French League and Maximilian sought to strengthen the unity of League by settling this war. The worst thing that Maximilian feared was more French involvement in Italian affairs. However, Ludovico Sforza invited Maximilian I and the Holy Roman Empire into Italy in order to strengthen his own position.  When the Florentines heard about Maximilian&rsquos intention of coming to Italy to « settle » Florence&rsquos war with Pisa, they were suspicious that the « settlement » would be heavily inclined toward Pisa. Thus, the Florentines rejected any attempted settlement of the war by the Emperor until Pisa was back under Florentine control. 
Giacobbe Giusti, Great Wars of Italy, Renaissance conflicts
The Florentines knew that another option was open to them. They knew that the French, under their new king—Louis XII—were intent on returning to Italy. Florence chose to take their chances with the French rather than the Holy Roman Empire. They felt that France might help them re-conquer Pisa. 
Louis XII was in fact intending to invade Italy to establish his claim over the Duchy of Milan. Louis was also entertaining an ambition to stake a claim to the Kingdom of Naples. This claim was even weaker than Louis XII&rsquos claim to Milan. The claim to the Kingdom of Naples was really King Charles VIII&rsquos claim. However, Louis demanded recognition of the claim solely because he, Louis, was the successor to Charles VIII.  However, Louis was aware of the hostility that was developing among his neighbors, in regards to French ambitions in Italy. Consequently, Louis XII needed to neutralize some of this hostility. Accordingly, in August 1498, Louis XII signed a treaty with Archduke Philip, son of Maximilian I, Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire which secured the borders between the Holy Roman Empire and France.  In July 1498, Louis renewed the Treaty of Étaples of 1492 with Henry VII of England. In August 1498, the Treaty of Marcoussis was signed between Louis XII and Ferdinand and Isabel. This Treaty resolved none of the outstanding territorial disputes between Spain and France, but agreed that both Spain and France « have all enemies in common except the Pope. » 
In July 1499, the French Army left Lyon in France and invaded Italy with 27,000 men (10,000 of which were cavalry and 5,000 of which were Swiss mercenaries). Louis XII placed Gian Giacomo Trivulzio in command of his army. In August 1499, the French Army came across Rocca di Arazzo the first of series of fortified towns in the western part of the Duchy of Milan.  Once the French artillery batteries were in place, it took only five hours to open a breach in the walls of the town. After conquering the town, Louis ordered that the garrison and part of the civil population be executed in an attempt to instill fear in his enemies, crush their morale and encourage the quick surrender of the other Strongholds in western Milan.  The strategy was a success and the campaign for the duchy of Milan ended swiftly. On September 5, 1499, terms were negotiated for the surrender of the city of Milan and on October 6, 1499, Louis made his triumphant entry into Milan. 
Once Louis XII was installed in Milan, he came under real pressure from the Florentines to assist them in re-conquering Pisa. King Louis and his advisors were annoyed at what they considered to be an arrogant request by the Florentines, since in their recent struggle to conquer Milan, the Florentines had maintained strict neutrality despite their long record of pro-French diplomacy.  However, Louis was mindful that if he were to conquer Naples, he must cross Florentine territory on the road to Naples. Louis XII needed good relations with Florence. So finally, on June 29, 1500, a combined French and Florentine army laid siege to Pisa. Within a day French guns had knocked down 100 feet of the city walls Pisa. An assault was made at the breach, but the French were surprised by the strong resistance thrown up by the Pisans. The French Army was forced to break off the siege on July 11, 1500 and retreat to the north. 
As part of Louis XII&rsquos continuing attempt to pacify or neutralize his neighbors to prevent them from obstructing his ambitions in Italy, Louis XII opened discussions with King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain. On November 11, 1500, Louis signed the Treaty of Grenada.  The Treaty of Grenada memorialized Louis XII&rsquos agreement with Ferdinand II of Aragon, King of Spain, to divide the Kingdom of Naples between themselves. Then Louis set off marching south from Milan towards Naples. King Louis XII&rsquos agreement with Spain was heavily criticized by contemporaries—including Niccolò Machiavelli in his masterpiece The Prince. Modern historians also criticize the Treaty of Grenada by calling it « foolish » on Louis XII&rsquos part. They allege, as does Machiavelli, that Louis XII did not need to invite Spain into Italy. Louis XII had achieved everything he needed in the Treaty of Marcoussis, that he had signed two years earlier (see above). The Treaty of Grenada did nothing but bind Louis XII&rsquos own hands. Once involved in Italian affairs, Spain would work to the detriment of France in Italy. Indeed, this is just what happened.
By 1500, a combined French and Spanish force had seized control of the Kingdom of Naples.  Louis XII appointed Louis d&rsquoArmagnac, Duke of Nemours as viceroy at Naples. On October 12, 1501,  the new viceroy took over administration of Naples. However, the new French viceroy proved to be more concerned with extending the French share of the kingdom than he was in ensuring that the Spanish received their share. This did much to aggravate relations between France and Spain.  These disagreements about the terms of the partition led to a war between Louis and Ferdinand. By 1503 Louis, having been defeated at the Battle of Cerignola on April 28, 1503  and Battle of Garigliano on December 29, 1503,  was forced to withdraw from Naples, which was left under the control of a Spanish viceroy, General Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba.
War of the League of Cambrai (1508–1516)
Pope Julius II became pope upon the death of Pope Pius III on 18 October 1503.  He was extremely concerned about the territorial expansion of the Republic of Venice in northern Italy. Pope Julius was not alone in his fear of Venetian territorial ambitions. Being from Genoa, Pope Julius knew of the Genoese hatred of Venice for forcing the other states out of the rich Po Valley as the Republic expanded its frontiers across northern Italy.  Additionally, Emperor Maximilian was upset with the Venetian seizure of Duchy of Friuli and the bordering County of Gorizia, which Maximilan claimed as his rightful inheritance.  Furthermore, King Louis XII of France had been firmly established in Milan since 1500. Louis XII now saw Venice as a threat to his position in Milan. Moreover, King Ferdinand of Naples (and of Aragon) resented the fact that Venice held a number of towns in southern Italy along the Adriatic coast.
The circumstances were set for Pope Julius to form the League of Cambrai on December 10, 1508, in which France,  the Papacy, Spain, the Duchy of Ferrara and the Holy Roman Empire agreed to restrain the Venetians.  Although the League destroyed much of the Venetian army at the Battle of Agnadello on May 14, 1509,  it failed to capture Padua. 
By 1510, relations between Louis XII and the pope had broken down. Accordingly, the Pope changed sides in the war and allied itself with Venice, which was now less of a threat to the pope due to previous Venetian defeats. In March 1510, Pope Julius brokered a deal with the Swiss Cantons that brought 6,000 more Swiss troops into the war against the French. Following a year of fighting over the Romagna, during which the Veneto-Papal alliance was repeatedly defeated, the Pope proclaimed a Holy League against the French in October 1511.  This league rapidly grew to include England, Spain, and the Holy Roman Empire.
French forces under Gaston de Foix inflicted an overwhelming defeat on a Spanish army at the Battle of Ravenna on April 11, 1512.  Foix was killed and the French were forced to withdraw from Italy when the Swiss invaded and conquered Milan.  The Swiss reinstated Massimiliano Sforza to the ducal throne of Milan.  However, the victorious Holy League fell apart over the subject of dividing the spoils, and in March 1513 Venice allied with France, agreeing to partition Lombardy between them. 
Louis mounted another invasion of Milan but was defeated at the battle of Novara on June 6, 1513. The battle of Novara would be the last in which the traditional Swiss tactic of charging in three columns would be used with success.  The victory of the Holy League at Novara was quickly followed by a series of Holy League victories against the Venetians at La Motta on October 7, 1513, the French at Guinegate on August 16, 1513, and the Scots at Flodden Field on September 9, 1513.
Overshadowing all, however, was the death of Pope Julius II on February 20, 1513,  which left the League without effective leadership. On January 1, 1515, Louis XII also died  and was succeeded to the throne of France by his nephew, Francis I. Francis I continued Louis XII&rsquos war against the League of Cambrai in Italy by leading a French and Venetian Army against the Swiss and routing them at Marignano on September 13–14, 1515.  This victory decisively broke the string of victories that the Swiss had enjoyed against the Venetians and the French. Following the Battle of Marignano, the League of Cambrai or Holy League collapsed as both Spain and the new pope, Leo X, gave up on the notion of placing Massiliano Sforza on the ducal throne of Milan.  By the treaties of Noyon on August 13, 1516 and Brussels, the entirety of northern Italy was surrendered to France and Venice.
Battle of Marciano, 2 August 1554 - History
Federico Giannini is a young art historian who wrote this article on his popular website Finestre sull’arte (and who kindly allowed us to translate it. If you read Italian you can find it here). The article was written while a technical team led by Maurizio Seracini was looking for the lost fresco of the Battle of Anghiari by Leonardo da Vinci in the Salone dei Cinquecento (Palazzo Vecchio, Florence) behind, literally, a fresco by Giorgio Vasari.
Recently the fresco and specifically the word ‘cercatrova‘ (seek-find) is also one of the clues in the bestselling novel “Inferno” by Dan Brown so it seemed opportune to offer some ‘clarity on the word’s true meaning.
The word in question, “cercatrova“, is written on a green flag carried by the Florentine rebels who fought on the side of the Sienese against the Medici in Marciano della Chiana.
To understand the meaning of “cercatrova” you need to know about the battle that was fought in Marciano della Chiana on August 2, 1554. The battle, also known as the Battle of Scannagallo from the name of the ditch near the battlefield, was fought between the Florentines, Imperial and Spanish on one side, all led by Gian Giacomo de Medici, and the Sienese, French and Swiss (and Florentine exiles)on the other. Sienese forces were commanded by Piero Strozzi, one of the Florentine rebels (and let’s not forget the Strozzi were almost always rivals of the Medici).
All this took place in the context of the wars against Siena that finally surrendered to Florence in 1559, when the Republic of Siena ceased to exist and its territories became part of the Florentine republic. It was of course also the year of Cosimo I’s triumphal entrance in Siena. The Battle of Marciano della Chiana was won by the Florentines, and the episode marked the beginning of the end for Siena because the army under the command of Piero Strozzi suffered a serious defeat.
The battle is described in detail in the Istorie Fiorentine (Florentine Histories) by Florentine historian Bernardo Segni (1504-1558) who also describes some of the banners carried by the opponents of the Florentines. This is where we begin to understand that “cercatrova” noted by Seracini refers to a completely different situation. Bernardo Segni writes regarding the Florentine exiles who fought alongside the Sienese and French: “to lift their spirits King Henry of France had donated to them twenty green flags, with Dante’s verse on them “He goes seeking liberty, which is so dear” (Libertà vo cercando, ch’è sì cara).
Furthermore we know that other flags, also green, bore slogans praising the freedom of Florence (to be understood as freedom from the Medici): for example the word Libertas or initials SPQF (Senatus Popolusque Florentinus, meaning “the Senate and People of Florence”). But why has Vasari decided to write “Cercatrova” and not the entire verse of Dante that according to Segni decorated the flags of the rebels?
To answer this question, we find enlightment from an art historian who noticed the inscription “cercatrova” well before Seracini. We do not know if Maurizio Seracini was believed to behave been the first to have noticed it, but we have to inform you that he arrives at best second.
In 1969, in fact, the art historian Lionello Giorgio Boccia published an essay in which he refers not only to Vasari ‘s fresco depicting the Battle of Marciano della Chiana but also to the flags carried by the opposing sides, including of course the green one with the words “cercatrova“.
Boccia wrote: “Most flags are green and they really were, as we have seen, those of the exiled anti-Medicean Florentines. These green flags also appear in the great fresco by Vasari, but instead of the motto LIBERTAS or SPQF, one of them (the penultimate to the far left wing of the Strozzi) bears the inscription ‘he who seeks finds’, alluding, with heavy irony, to the false quest for freedom of the exiled, who became instruments under foreign control and now were to be dealt a heavy punishment “.
So the phrase that many would interpret as conclusive evidence that Vasari concealed Leonardo’s fresco of the Battle of Anghiari on purpose turns out to be a sarcastic motto, ridiculing the group of exiled rebels (obviously considered traitors of Florence) that, fighting alongside Siena, were looking for a way to free Florence from the Medici.
Instead of freedom they found harsh punishment: as a result of the battle many rebels were taken prisoner, brought to Florence and then executed.
Isn’t there enough for a great novel? (S. B)
About Piero Strozzi, marshal of France
Piero (or Pietro) Strozzi (c. 1510 – 21 June 1558) was an Italian military leader. He was a member of the rich Florentine family of the Strozzi.
Piero Strozzi was the son of Filippo Strozzi the Younger and Clarice de' Medici.
Although in 1539 he married another Medici, Laudomia di Pierfrancesco, he was a fierce opponent of the main line of that family. He fought in the army led by his father and other Florentine exile from France to oust the Medici from Florence, but, after their defeat at the Battle of Montemurlo, Piero fled to France at the court of Catherine de' Medici.
He was in French service during the Italian War of 1542. Having raised an army of Italian mercenaries, he was confronted by the Spanish-Imperial forces at the Battle of Serravalle, where he was defeated. In 1548 he was in Scotland supporting Mary of Guise of behalf of Henry II of France, during the war of the Rough Wooing. There he designed fortifications against the English at Leith and Haddington. As he was shot in the thigh by an arquebus at Haddington, Strozzi supervised the works at Leith from a chair carried by four workmen. Strozzi also designed works at Dunbar Castle with the assistance of Migiliorino Ubaldini.
In 1551 he successfully defended Mirandola against the papal troops. He was named marshal of France in 1554.
Later he fought in the defence of the Republic of Siena against Cosimo de' Medici, leading a French army. He obtained a pyrrhic victory at Pontedera on 11 June 1554, but his army could not receive help from the ships of his brother Leone (who had been killed by an arquebus shot near Castiglione della Pescaia) and he was forced to retreat to Pistoia. On 2 August his defeat at the Battle of Marciano meant the end of the Senese independence.
In 1556 he was appointed as superintendent of the Papal army and lord of Épernay. In 1557 the participated in the siege of Thionville, near Calais. He died there the following year.
He is generally credited as the inventor of the dragoon military speciality (arquebusiers à cheval or horse arquibusiers).
His son Filippo was also a military commander, as was his brother Leone Strozzi, a Knight of Malta, known as the Prior of Capua.
Stròzzi, Piero. - Condottiero (Firenze 1510 circa - Thionville 1558), figlio di Giovan Battista detto Filippo, e fratello di Leone. Abbandonato lo stato ecclesiastico e abbracciata la carriera militare, si pose al servizio dei Francesi per abbattere in Italia il predominio di Carlo V, protettore dei Medici. Alla morte del duca Alessandro, propose ai fuorusciti fiorentini di attaccare il nuovo duca Cosimo I. Il tentativo fallì con la rotta di Montemurlo (1537), e Piero dovette fuggire a Venezia e quindi in Francia. Entrò al servizio di Francesco I, e fece le campagne in Italia (1544, 1551, 1554), recandosi al soccorso di Siena, assediata dal duca Cosimo, alleato di Carlo V. Dopo la capitolazione di Siena, continuò la resistenza a Montalcino (1556) ebbe da Enrico II, a riconoscimento del suo valore, il titolo di maresciallo di Francia. Luogotenente generale delle truppe pontificie (1557), sbloccò Ostia, minacciata dagli Imperiali, salvando così Roma. Dopo la sconfitta di San Quintino fu richiamato in Francia, dove (1557) prese parte all'assedio di Calais l'anno seguente fu mortalmente ferito davanti a Thionville, in Lorena.
Battle of Marciano, 2 August 1554 - History
Photo © Municipality of Marciano della Chiana
Marciano della Chiana (ZIP code 52047) is 25,2 kilometers far from Arezzo, that is the Chief Town of the homonymous province to whom the municipality belongs.
Marciano della Chiana has a population of 2.757 inhabitants (Marcianesi) and a surface of 23,71 square kilometers thus showing a population density of 116,28 inhabitants per square kilometer. It rises 320 metres above the sea level.
The City Hall is located in Piazza Fanfulla 4, phone ++39 0575 - 845024, fax ++39 0575 - 845432: the E-Mail address is [email protected]
Population : The municipality of Marciano della Chiana had a popolation of 2.401 inhabitants accordingly to the results of the national census made in 1991. After the national census made in 2001 the population was 2.757 inhabitants, thus showing during the years 1991 - 2001 a percentual variation of 14,83% inhabitants.
The inhabitants are distributed in 939 families with an average of 2,94 people per family.
The place : The territory of the municipality lies between 236 and 320 metres above sea level.
The altimetric spawn is thus of 84 metres.
Work and workers :There are 125 industrial firms employing 809 people that are the 63,90% of the total of the workers. There are 57 service firms employing 116 people that are the 9,16% of the total of the workers. There are also 94 firms employing 260 people that are the 20,54% of the total of the workers. There are also 14 administrative offices emplying 81 workers that are the 6,40% of the total of the workers.
There is a total of 1.266 workers, that are the 45,92% of the inhabitants of the municipality.
Marciano della Chiana rises on a hill in the valley of the Chiani river.
The local economy is mainly based on the production of cereals, vegetables, fruits, vine grapes and olives.
Photo © Municipality of Marciano della Chiana
The place name comes from the compound of "Marciano" , coming this latter from the Latin proper name of person "Marcius" , and of "Chiana" , with reference to the valley of the Chiani river, in which the town rises.
The first settlements in the territory of Marciano della Chiana go back to the Etruscan and Roman Ages, as testified by the numerous archaeological finds came to light, dating back to that time and saves in the Archaeological Museum of Arezzo.
After the collapse of the Roman Empire, the territory was colonized first by the Gothics and then by the Longbards. Nevertheless the birth and the consolidation of the actual village started during the Early Middle Ages.
During the XI-th century the village of Marciano della Chiana belonged to the Saint Quirico at the Roses Abbey, being this latter under the direct influence of the Bishopric of Arezzo.
During the next century Marciano della Chiana was subdued to the hegemony of the city of Arezzo and of its Bishopric, getting the village its municipal autonomy nevertheless. Arezzo started the fortification of the village by building an imposing ring of walls equipped with a fortress and some sighting towers.
The domination of Arezzo lasted along the two next centuries, leaving its traces in the numerous religious buildings that are still visible today.
At the end of the XIV-th century the village was conquered by the Republic of Siena but after a short period this latter had to give its all domains to the Republic of Florence.
Entered the orbit of the Republic of Florence, in 1417 the village was added to the community of Foiano, thus losing its autonomy.
During the first years of Florentine domination, Marciano della Chiana subdued numerous sieges operated by the troops of the Republic of Siena, wanting this latter to reconquer its ancient domain. In 1554 the tw republics struggled in the famous Battle of Marciano that marked the victory of Florence.
Photo © Municipality of Marciano della Chiana
Since 1555 Marciano della Chiana entered officially the domains of Florence, being this latter governed by the Medici's Grand Dukes. This latter were succeeded by the Lorena's Dukes, who dominated almost uninterruptedly up to the Unity of Italy, occurred on 1861 by the action of the King Vittorio Emanuele II of Savoia.
Among the most important monuments to see in Marciano della Chiana we point out here the Parrocchiale dei Santi Andrea e Stefano (Saints Andrew and Stephen Parish), the Tempio di Santa Vittoria (Saint Victoria Temple) and the Castello di Marciano (Castle of Marciano).
Among the several celebrations periodically taking place in Marciano della Chiana we remind the "Feast in honour of the Holiest Crucifix" held on the week after the August 15th and during which some religious celebrations, sport competitions and cultural shows take place.
Battle of Marciano, 2 August 1554 - History
Only 15 paintings by the Italian Renaissance master Leonardo da Vinci are known to exist. But what if there were more…and what if Leonardo’s greatest work—one that’s been presumed destroyed since 1563—was safely hidden, just waiting to be discovered?
THE BIG PICTURE
In 1503 the Republic of Florence (now part of Italy) commissioned Leonardo da Vinci to paint a mural in the Palazzo Vecchio (“Old Palace”), which housed the city-state’s government. The mural was to be painted on a wall of the palace’s Hall of the Five Hundred, the room where the city’s 500-member grand council conducted its affairs. The city fathers wanted scenes of Florence’s military triumphing over its enemies, so Leonardo painted the Battle of Anghiari, in which Florence and its allies defeated Milan in June 1440.
Typically, murals on walls were painted using the fresco technique: dry pigments were mixed with water and brushed into wet plaster as the wall was being built. Frescoes can be spectacular, but they come at a cost: the artist must paint quickly, before the plaster dries, and he cannot revise his work because once the pigments have soaked into the plaster, they can’t be removed or painted over. And the choice of colors is limited, because lime contained in the plaster bleaches many types of pigments. Only pigments that are resistant to chemical bleaching can be used.
Leonardo didn’t want these restrictions, so he decided to experiment with a new and untested technique of mural painting. He used oil paints, which are normally used on canvas, and got them to stick to the wall by treating the plaster surface with a preparation containing some kind of waxy substance, probably beeswax.
The oil paints went on well enough, but they didn’t dry quickly enough to prevent dripping (perhaps because Leonardo used too much wax), so he brought in braziers (charcoal stoves) to get the paint to dry more quickly. Bad idea: instead of drying the paint, the heat melted the wax, causing even more damage. Leonardo was so discouraged that he abandoned the project entirely. Instead of getting a battle scene playing out across the entire expanse of wall, all the city fathers got for their money was the centerpiece: a 15-by-20-foot depiction of a few soldiers on horseback fighting over a battle flag, and a few others battling it out on foot.
For all its flaws, the drippy, melted, and unfinished painting was a sight to behold, thanks to Leonardo’s obsession with presenting human and animal anatomy as accurately as possible. Over the course of his lifetime, Leonardo dissected more than 30 executed criminals and medical cadavers, plus countless frogs, pigs, dogs, cows, horses, bears, and other animals. When he performed his dissections, he took exhaustive notes and made minutely detailed sketches of what his scalpel revealed so that he could use them in his art. His sketches of the human body are considered among the first medically accurate drawings ever made.
All this attention to detail paid off: many Renaissance artists considered The Battle of Anghiari Leonardo’s finest painting, quite a compliment considering that he also painted The Last Supper and the Mona Lisa. For decades afterward, people made special trips to the Palazzo Vecchio just to look at the mural, both to study the poses of the soldiers and the expressions on their faces, and especially to look at the horses. The startling realism of the giant creatures was so inspiring to other artists that many of them made copies of the scene, no doubt hoping that some of Leonardo’s genius would rub off. The most famous copy—actually believed to be a copy of a copy—is a drawing made by the Flemish painter Peter Paul Rubens in 1603. Today it hangs in the Louvre.
It’s a good thing that Rubens and others made copies, because they may be the only surviving record of what Leonardo’s version looked like. When the Hall of the Five Hundred was enlarged and remodeled in 1563 by an architect and painter named Giorgio Vasari, the walls were painted with new battle scenes, this time with frescoes painted by Vasari. In the process, every trace of Leonardo’s masterpiece vanished. No record of what happened to The Battle of Anghiari survives—for that matter, no one even knows for certain on which wall it was painted. It was assumed that the painting was destroyed during the renovations.
BEHIND THE SCENES
In the late 1960s, an Italian art historian and da Vinci expert named Carlo Pedretti proposed a different theory: maybe The Battle of Anghiari was still intact and still in the Hall of the Five Hundred, only covered up (and, hopefully, preserved) during the renovations of 1563. In his 1968 book The Unpublished Leonardo, Pedretti cites the examples of two churches and one courtroom in Florence that Vasari was hired to renovate in the 1500s. In all three cases, rather than destroy the existing artwork, Vasari protected existing frescoes by building new walls just an inch or so in front of the old ones. He likely made no secret of what he was doing, but he apparently made no record of it either, and over the centuries, all knowledge of the inner walls and the artwork they still concealed was forgotten. The frescoes remained safely hidden away for hundreds of years until they were rediscovered during new renovations in the 1800s.
Was it possible that Vasari had done the same thing with The Battle of Anghiari? Pedretti thought so. In the mid-1970s he conducted a study of the Hall of the Five Hundred. Based on historical evidence and a thorough physical examination of the hall, he concluded that The Battle of Anghiari had been painted on the east wall of the room, where a Vasari fresco commemorating the Battle of Marciano of 1554 is today.
THE VASARI CODE?
It was during that same survey of the hall that an assistant of Pedretti’s named Maurizio Seracini noticed something unusual: near the top of the Battle of Marciano fresco, some 40 feet up, where no one at ground level would ever see it, the words cerca trova (“seek, and you shall find”) are painted in tiny, faint lettering on a small green battle flag. These are the only words painted on any of the Vasari frescoes in the Hall of the Five Hundred.
Seracini believes the words are a message from Vasari: that the Leonardo painting is behind the Battle of Marciano fresco, right where Pedretti theorized it would be. But neither of the men could do much about it in the 1970s because the Vasari frescoes are themselves Renaissance masterpieces, and at the time, there was no technology available that would have allowed them to look behind the Vasari without damaging it. In 1977 their work came to a halt.
By the year 2000, new technologies such as laser scanning, thermal imaging, and ground-penetrating radar (and computers powerful enough to process the resulting data) made it possible for Seracini to resume the search. It was suddenly possible for him to see where doors and windows had been bricked up during the 1563 renovation and the original height of the ceiling before it was raised. In 2002 something even more significant was discovered: the existence of a half-inch air gap behind the east wall, and the presence of another, older wall right behind it—just as Pedretti had predicted there would be.
Once again, Seracini bumped up against the limits of technology. His devices enabled him to detect the presence of the hidden wall, but there was no way for him to tell what, if anything, was painted on it. It wasn’t until 2005, when some physicists at a scientific conference told him that it should be possible to build a “gun” that shoots gamma rays (similar to X-rays) onto the hidden wall without damaging either Vasari’s fresco or Leonardo’s mural, if it really is painted on the wall beneath. The subatomic particles that bounce back, called neutrons, could then be analyzed for signatures of specific paints and pigments that Leonardo is known to have used. Bonus : the gamma ray gun offered the possibility of even producing an image of any artwork painted on the inner wall.
But there was a catch: no such gun existed as yet, and it was estimated that developing one was going to cost more than $2 million, money that Seracini did not have and was unable to raise. Even worse, though the gamma ray technology was demonstrably safe and harmless to both paintings and humans, shooting a ray gun at a Renaissance masterpiece certainly didn’t sound harmless, and the Florence authorities balked at the idea.
HOLE IN THE WALL
Having exhausted all noninvasive technology options, in 2011 Seracini decided to use minimally invasive techniques instead. Working with restorationists who were repairing damage to the Vasari fresco, he sought permission to drill tiny holes into areas of the fresco where no original paint remains, thereby sparing the work from damage. The holes would be barely a tenth of an inch in diameter, just large enough for a medical device called an endoscope to be poked through the holes to see what’s painted on the inner wall.
Seracini wanted permission to drill 14 holes but only received permission to drill seven. In the end, he only drilled six. None of the holes were located in areas that he felt offered the most promise, and only two even made it into the air gap between the two walls. Of these two, only one produced any evidence at all, but the evidence was compelling nonetheless: tiny samples of paint taken from the inner wall showed evidence of two pigments, one brown and one black, that Leonardo is known to have used in his painting. When compared with similar pigment used by Leonardo to paint both the Mona Lisa and a painting of St. John the Baptist, the sample of black pigment was found to contain the same proportions of iron and manganese oxide.
And that’s where the hunt for the lost Leonardo stands today. Drilling holes into the Vasari fresco, even into cracks and other places where there isn’t any original paint remaining, proved so controversial that the hunt for the lost Leonardo was suspended in September 2012, perhaps for good. Unless Seracini comes up with the money for the gamma ray gun and gets permission to use it, that may be as close as we ever get to finding out if the painting really is where he thinks it is. More than 30 years into the search, he isn’t giving up: “I still have the same passion. I don’t want to quit now,” he says. “I’m so close.”
This article is reprinted with permission from Uncle John’s Factastic Bathroom Reader. All of Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader favorites are packed into these 512 glorious pages – from little-known history to the origins of everyday things—plus odd news, weird fads, quirky quotes, mind-bending science, head-scratching blunders, and all sorts of random oddities. Oh yeah, and thousands of incredible facts!
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Salone dei Cinquecento
The Palazzo is home to the Salone dei Cinquecento (Hall of the Five Hundred), which was built in 1494, during the short lived Republic of Fra Girolamo Savonarola. Savonarola led a popular uprising against the Medici, ousting them from both power and the city. Upon installing his new republican government, Savonarola increased the number of Florentines eligible to participate in the government to (purportedly) over 1,000 people. Thus, a large hall was needed to accommodate at least five hundred Florentines at a time.
Fra Savonarola was eventually condemned to death, paving the way for the return of the Medici, but prior to their return, gonfaloniere Pier Soderini commissioned Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci to decorate the hall. Michelangelo painted the Battle of Cascina Leonardo, the Battle of Anghiari, but neither mural was ever completed. Michelangelo was recalled to Rome by the Pope, and Leonardo, who rarely finished his commissions, abandoned the project.
The Battle of Anghiari centered on the fight for the Milanese standard during the climax of the battle. Leonardo’s focus on the standard may have been inspired by his patron, Gonfaloniere (“Standard-bearer”) Pier Soderini, but the gruesome action was influenced by his recent employment as a military engineer under the vicious warrior Cesare Borgia. The cartoons captured frenzied movement as only those of Leonardo could. Displaying emotion through movement was one of Leonardo’s specialties. In fact, as one of the pioneers of human dissection for art’s sake, Leonardo’s knowledge of anatomy enabled him to correctly depict the facial muscles that corresponded to his figures’ facial expressions. Moreover, his preparatory sketches and horse dissections for a planned (but never executed) equestrian statue for Duke Ludovico Sforza enabled him to render the horses’ movements perfectly.
They are among the greatest evocations of movement in the entire history of art. … Movement, something that had obsessed Leonardo ever since he had tried to catch the blur of a cat’s squirming limbs in an early drawing, is here clarified as a theme with blood-red intensity.Jonathan Jones, British art critic
In his book Leonardo Da Vinci, Walter Isaacson posits that Leonardo abandoned his work on the Battle of Anghiari because “[h]e was a perfectionist faced with challenges other artists would have disregarded but that he could not.” Indeed, Leonardo struggled with achieving the proper visual perspective of a large mural that would be seen from multiple vantage points, causing figures to look distorted when observed at those vantage points. According to Isaacson, “Other painters would not have noticed, or would have chosen to ignore, the way figures in a large painting could seem disproportionate when viewed from different parts of the room. But Leonardo was obsessed by the optics, mathematics, and art of perspective.” Regardless of the reason the Battle of Anghiari was never finished, Leonardo’s cartoons for the project became a point of reference for future artists. Raphael traveled to Florence for the sole purpose of seeing the work, inspiring his move towards mannerism. Indeed, Benvenuto Cellini wrote of the cartoons, “As long as they remain intact, they were the school of the world.”
After Fra Savonarola was burned at the stake and the Medici regained power, Duke Cosimo de’ Medici made the Vecchio his residence in the 1540s, moving his court from the Palazzo de’ Medici (now Palazzo de’ Medici-Riccardi) and renovating the Hall to exude princely power, demonstrating his absolute rule. The palace was renamed the Palazzo Ducale, cementing the Medici as the ruling party in the once republican Florence.
Cosimo commissioned Baccio Bandinelli, Giuliano di Baccio d’Agnolo, and Giovanni Caccini to design a public audience chamber (known as the Udienza), where the Duke would receive foreign dignitaries, guests, and messengers. The result was a design reminiscent of imperial Roman triumphal arches a connection that I am sure was not lost on those visiting the ducal receiving chambers.
- The Udienza
- The Arch of Constantine, Rome
The figure in the middle arch is Pope Leo X, the first Medici (but not the last) to sit on the papal throne. To the left of Pope Leo is Giovanni dalle Bande Nere, Duke Cosimo’s father (as well as a famous condottiere) while to the right is Duke Alessandro de’Medici, the first Duke of Florence. Above each Medici are the devices associated with that particular individual. For instance, above Giovanni dalle Bande Nere is a winged firebolt, symbolizing his physical prowess and speed while above Duke Alessandro is a rhinoceros, symbolizing power.
The entire itinerary was meant to impress upon the viewers the magnificence (real or imagined) of the Medici House and reaffirm its claim to be within the upper echelons of royalty.
Meanwhile, the ceiling was commissioned to Giorgio Vasari, Duke Medici’s court painter. Vasari raised the ceiling by around seven meters and decorated it in the Venetian style with frescoes that celebrated Cosimo I’s pivotal role in the creation of the Duchy of Tuscany.
Every day I draw for the Great Hall and façades so that it will reflect all your mastery, and this has redoubled my creativity.Giorgio Vasari to Cosimo I
Cerca trova or CATROVACER?
“Cerca trova” (seek and ye shall find) is a mysterious inscription that is located at the top of Vasari’s fresco The Battle of Marciano positioned in the Hall of the Five Hundred in Palazzo Vecchio.
This inscription and its anagram CATROVACER play a very important role in Dan Brown’s Inferno.
The words “cerca trova”, however, are not as mysterious as believed: in fact, in the 1960s, some art historians discovered their origin.
The Battle of Marciano, also known as The Battle of Scannagallo, was a very important battle fought by the troops of the Duke Cosimo I de’ Medici against the city of Siena, near Marciano in Val di Chiana.
The battle was decisive in defeating Siena and achieving supremacy over all of Tuscany.
The conflict was also important for the Duke Cosimo because the troops of Siena were led by Piero Strozzi, a Florentine nobleman, who was his archenemy.
Other Florentine troops, consisting of supporters of the Florentine Republic as well as enemies of Cosimo I in general, joined Piero Strozzi.
The Battle of Marciano was also fought among Florentines to achieve the supremacy over Florence. So when we say “Siena soldiers”, we mean the troops defending Siena, which included Florentine soldiers.
Siena soldiers wore different green flags, some of them donated by the king of France, who supported them.
Dante’s verses were embroidered on a number of these green flags:
He goes in search of freedom, which is so dear,
As he who gives his life for it would know.
(Purgatorio, Canto I, 71–72)
By these verses, Siena troops wanted to express that they were fighting to defend their own freedom.
But those Siena soldiers, looking for freedom, instead found the defeat.
This is the sarcastic message that Cosimo I wanted to express by asking Giorgio Vasari to paint the words “cerca trova” on a green flag in place of Dante’s verses.
Anyway, seek and ye shall find… something!
Florence Inferno is a blog about the Florentine mysteries, symbols, and places that are mentioned in Dan Brown’s latest novel Inferno, and much more about the city. We also offer a guided Inferno walking tour, which follows the footsteps of Robert and Sienna, as well as an an eBook with an audio version.
I JUST WANT TO SAY THAT I AM READING DAN BROWNS BOOK “INFERNO” AND I LOVE IT. IT HAS MANY SYMBOLS, BUT THE BEST SYMBOL IS “CATROVACER”. I THINK THAT DAN BROWN IS THE BEST AUTHOR IN THE WORLD. HE ALWAYS MAKE PEOPLE THINK, WHAT IS THE MEANING IN HIS BOOKS. I AM JUST SORRY THAT OTHERS HAVE NOT READ ALL HIS BOOKS. I HAVE READ ALL HIS BOOKS, AND I CAN SAY THAT NO ONLY “THE DA VINCI CODE IS A BEST SELLER, ALL HIS OTHER BOOKS SHOULD BE THAT. THANK YOU. HAVE A LOVELY DAY. PYRIELFlorenceInferno
Hello Pyriel, Dan Brown’s books are fabulous and they cause curiosity about art and history, have you seen the books that we suggest about that?
I totally agree and I am a big fan of Dan Brown and have read all his books including inferno and Da Vinci Code.. He is the best!
I’m currently reading Inferno, the text on the front cover currently led me here. I’ve had more fun reading this book series and watching the movies than I have any other.