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Istituto per i Beni Culturali Emilia-Romagna

Memoria e Ricerca

Foreign travellers in Pisa during XIX century: baths, leisure and study

di Sara Mori
in Memoria e Ricerca n.s. 46 (2014), p. 79

The essay explores some aspects of cultural sociability in which foreigners were involved in Pisa in the first half of the nineteenth century. Pisa was a small town, but since the beginning of the nineteenth century, it became a popular destination for a good number of travellers, attracted by the artistic beauty, the mild climate and the possibility of thermal therapies. In this context it seems unusual the shortage of social and cultural opportunities except for the visit to the historical complex of Piazza dei Miracoli and the social events at the Casino of Nobility or at the literary salons of the Pisan high society, however, reserved for a very small group of foreigners. One aim of this paper is to underline the partial attempts made to widen the cultural activities in Pisa at that time, such as the founding of the English monthly magazine The Ausonian (1830), the establishment of the Pisan Book Society (1844), a circulating library linked to the Anglican Church of Pisa, a quite large community in that period, and initiatives related to the Convention of Italian Scientists in 1839, which brought in the Tuscan town many Italian and foreign scholars, often accompanied by their families. Keywords: Visitors  to Pisa, Travel Literature, Book Society of Pisa, British Travel­lers, Tuscany, Tourism in the Nineteenth century