Two weeks in Europe - Brindisi, Rome, Brussels

by Aung Naing Oo September. 12, 2007 5393 views

Italian Sailor Monument, Brindisi, Italy - Crossing the Pigonati Channel you enter the main port, naturally divided in two parts, West and East Coves; at this point one meets the Italian Sailor Monument (called also the Big Rudder) built in 1933 in the shape of a rudder, which stands 54 meters tall.
Together with the Romans Columns it is considered the symbol of the city.

The funds for this construction took approximately 10 years to collect and the famous tenor Tito Schipa took a particular interest in this project contributing the takings from his concerts.

At the base of the monument is a sacred chapel in memory of the fallen sailors during both world wars as well as the bell from the battle ship “Benedetto Brin” , which sank in the port of Brindisi in 1915.
In the upper square at the entrance there are two anchors which are relics from Austrian-Hungary battle ships as well two submarine cannons of the same era.

A marble Our Lady statue has been put at the top of the monument in 1954.
From the top of monument the panoramic view to the city and harbour is most impressive.

Italian Sailor Monument, submarine cannon, Brindisi, Italy

Virgil's monument, Seafront, Brindisi, Italy - Along the striking seafront on the town's inner port, you can view the gardens of the Vittorio Emanuele square, entirely remade in 2001; inside there is the Dolphin's fountain (built in 1876), and the Virgil's monument, a marble work by Bodini (1988).
Close to the square, on the harbour-office's wall, there is the Sundial, built in 1917 by the captain Alberto de Albertis, an axpert of italian's sundials.

UNLB Training Center Entrance, Brindisi, Italy - The mandate of the Centre is to act as a training hub for DPKO and UN agencies supporting both logistically and administratively all courses, seminars and workshops organized by DPKO CTDS and held at UNLB.

The Training Centre is located in the Italian Air Force Military Base. The UNLB Training Unit is run by Personnel Section and is currently made up of one Unit Coordinator, two courses support desk Officers and one administrative staff.

The Unit dates back 1999; the center has grown throughout these years, (from one course and twelve participants in 1999, up to 121 courses with 1,602 participants in 2005), and with the arising of the Brahimi report, Training has become one of the milestones of DPKO.

The training Centre is equipped with five seminar rooms, three IT labs, two video-conferencing rooms, and one exercise room equipped with round tables.

Near The War Memorial, Brindisi, Italy - Walking along Regina Margherita street you reach to Lenio Flacco square, close to the ancient Messapic wall ruins.
Not far, in S.Theresa square there is The War Memorial, the monument to the soldiers killed in first world war, was originally placed in Dionisi square, where it was unveiled in november 22nd 1931, in the presence of the king Vittorio Emanuele III. The choice was defined "inappropriate" by the author, the brindisinian sculptor Edgardo Simone, who donated the work to the town before moving to Naples.Therefore, the monument of white marble, in 1940 was moved where nowadays is placed.The sculptor Edgardo Simone has carried out more than 30 War Memorial in Italy and in the rest of the world, and he was a world fomous artist and cinema set-designer, especially in USA.
On the outer part of St. Theresa square, which has a half-circle shape, there is the Empire's Fountain, constructed in 1940 by the Provincial Government.

The near fisherman's area looks very impressive, here is very easy to meet old and youg artisans of fishing net and wood boats. This was the neighbourhood called "Sciabiche", nowdays in the opposite port shore, where the colors of the ancient fisherman trade show up for the originality and tradition.

Boat Ferry, Brindisi, Italy

Pantheon, Rome, Italy -

The Pantheon is one of the best preserved Roman Monuments in Rome. This building dates from 118-128, when Adrian reconstructed the original Pantheon, which was destroyed in several blazes.

Its dome is an architecture marvel. It later inspired Bramante when he constructed the Saint Peters one. Under the dome we can find some famous coffins: Raphael –the painter–, Humberto I, and Vittorio Emanuelle II.

Piazza Venezia, Vittorio Emanuele II Monument, Rome, Italy - In 1870 what seemed impossible becomes a fact: After centuries of foreign occupations and local divisions Vittorio Emanuele II, the king of Italy, unifies the country. Some years later the city of Rome dedicated him this building.

Piazza Venezia, Vittorio Emanuele II Monument, Rome, Italy - Dedicated to Emanuele II, the father of the Italian unity– was constructed at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century.

Near Roman Forums, Rome, Italy

Roman Forums, Rome, Italy

Colosseum, Rome, Italy - The Colosseum or Coliseum, originally the Flavian Amphitheatre (Latin: Amphitheatrum Flavium, Italian Anfiteatro Flavio or Colosseo), is an elliptical amphitheatre in the centre of the city of Rome, Italy, the largest ever built in the Roman Empire. It is one of the greatest works of Roman architecture and engineering.

Occupying a site just east of the Roman Forum, its construction started between 70 and 72 AD under the emperor Vespasian and was completed in 80 AD under Titus, with further modifications being made during Domitian's reign.

Originally capable of seating around 50,000 spectators, the Colosseum was used for gladiatorial contests and public spectacles. It remained in use for nearly 500 years with the last recorded games being held there as late as the 6th century – well after the traditional date of the fall of Rome in 476. As well as the traditional gladiatorial games, many other public spectacles were held there, such as mock sea battles, animal hunts, executions, re-enactments of famous battles, and dramas based on Classical mythology. The building eventually ceased to be used for entertainment in the early medieval era. It was later reused for such varied purposes as housing, workshops, quarters for a religious order, a fortress, a quarry and a Christian shrine.

Although it is now in a ruined condition due to damage caused by earthquakes and stone-robbers, the Colosseum has long been seen as an iconic symbol of Imperial Rome. Today it is one of modern Rome's most popular tourist attractions and still has close connections with the Roman Catholic Church, as each Good Friday the Pope leads a torchlit "Way of the Cross" procession to the amphitheatre.

Colosseum, Rome, Italy - Construction of the Colosseum began under the rule of the Emperor Vespasian in around 70–72. The site chosen was a flat area on the floor of a low valley between the Caelian, Esquiline and Palatine Hills, through which a canalised stream ran. By the 2nd century BC the area was densely inhabited. It was devastated by the Great Fire of Rome in AD 64, following which Nero seized much of the area to add to his personal domain. He built the grandiose Domus Aurea on the site, in front of which he created an artificial lake surrounded by pavillions, gardens and porticoes. The existing Aqua Claudia aqueduct was extended to supply water to the area and the gigantic bronze Colossus of Nero was set up nearby at the entrance to the Domus Aurea.

The area was transformed under Vespasian and his successors. Although the Colossus was preserved, much of the Domus Aurea was torn down. The lake was filled in and the land reused as the location for the new Flavian Amphitheatre. Gladiatorial schools and other support buildings were constructed nearby within the former grounds of the Domus Aurea. According to a reconstructed inscription found on the site, "the emperor Vespasian ordered this new amphitheatre to be erected from his general's share of the booty." This is thought to refer to the vast quantity of treasure seized by the Romans following their victory in the Great Jewish Revolt in 70. The Colosseum can be thus interpreted as a great triumphal monument built in the Roman tradition of celebrating great victories. Vespasian's decision to build the Colosseum on the site of Nero's lake can also be seen as a populist gesture of returning to the people an area of the city which Nero had appropriated for his own use. In contrast to many other amphitheatres, which were located on the outskirts of a city, the Colosseum was constructed in the city centre; in effect, placing it both literally and symbolically at the heart of Rome.

The Colosseum had been completed up to the third story by the time of Vespasian's death in 79. The top level was finished and the building inaugurated by his son, Titus, in 80. Dio Cassius recounts that over 9,000 wild animals were killed during the inaugural games of the amphitheatre. The building was remodelled further under Vespasian's younger son, the newly-designated Emperor Domitian, who constructed the hypogeum, a series of underground tunnels used to house animals and slaves. He also added a gallery to the top of the Colosseum to increase its seating capacity.

In 217, the Colosseum was badly damaged by a major fire (caused by lightning, according to Dio Cassius) which destroyed the wooden upper levels of the amphitheatre's interior. It was not fully repaired until about 240 and underwent further repairs in 250 or 252 and again in 320. An inscription records the restoration of various parts of the Colosseum under Theodosius II and Valentinian III (reigned 425–450), possibly to repair damage caused by a major earthquake in 443; more work followed in 484 and 508. The arena continued to be used for contests well into the 6th century, with gladiatorial fights last mentioned around 435. Animal hunts continued until at least 523.

Avenue E. Mounierlaan, Brussels

An old windmill near Hof Ter Musschen farm, Brussels

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