If I will have the chance to visit Italia, I would certainly avoid those noisy crowds of tourists around Vatican and the Coliseum. Rather than that, I would prefer to go see only the undisturbed unpolluted places in Italy like Umbria and Basilicata the way Francis Ford Coppola suggested us to search for in the video attached here.
A visit to Italy is like once in a lifetime experience; the ground is paved with three millennia of history, the atmosphere is serene and inspiring, the characteristic color of the sea and the sky gives you a hint of what eternity means…
The sweetness of the high hills fully clothed in thick forests, the fresh and calm air of the evenings at the sea shore, the intricate ornaments of the facades of so many cathedrals and palaces, the magnificent peaks of Alps, sumptuous villas surrounded by peaceful Sun loving Italian Cypress trees, all these natural motifs inspired great artists of all times.
My trip will be a very specific one. Top of the list is Castelfranco Veneto where Giorgione Museum has finally opened last month. Another destination of great interest is Busseto. I want to be there and admire the baroque architecture of the town where Giuseppe Verdi spent most of his life. In the neighboring Milan, there is a lot to learn and see such as Bramante, the greatest architect of the High Renaissance, the Sforza Castle and the home of the Visconti family.
Nevertheless, I would have to spend some time in Rome visiting Trajan’s Column, which is of historical importance to me. Built by the architect Apollodorus of Damascus the freestanding column renders in full details the fearful battles between Romans and Dacians (101–102 and 105–106). Trajan lost the first war with Dacians, but managed to make a peace agreement with Decebalus, Dacians’ king.
” Both the Dacians and the Getae were still perceived as a threat by the Roman Empire, and because of their frequent raiding expeditions into Roman territories, provincial or central leaders planned and undertook reprisals against them. On the other hand, it is clear that the Dacians and the Getae were in constant and frequent interaction with the Romans throughout the late Roman period. Often they were diplomatic partners and played active parts in the political games of Rome, often as amicii et socii (“friends and partners”), possibly of Rome herself but usually of individual Roman leaders. For example, in his fight against Mark Antony, Octavian sought to ally himself with the Dacians: in 35 BC, he asked for the hand of King Cotiso’s daughter in exchange for the king’s betrothal to Octavian’s daughter Julia.
The Flavian dynasty, particularly Domitian (81-96), engaged Roman troops along the lower and middle Danube in what amounted to an opening skirmish against the Dacians. But real hostilities did not begin in earnest until Trajan attacked the Dacians with the full weight of Roman might. The Roman armies under Trajan's command crossed the Danube into the Dacian territory targeting directly the core are in the Orăştie Mountains. In 102, after a series of encounters, a peace agreement was reached: Decebalus was to destroy his fortresses and a Roman garrison was installed at Sarmizegetusa Regia (Grădiştea Muncelului, Romania) to watch over the agreement. Trajan also ordered his engineer, Apollodorus of Damascus to design and build a bridge across the Danube at Drobeta.
Trajan's second Dacian campaign in 105-106 was very specific in its aim of expansion and conquest. The offensive was aimed directly at Sarmizegetusa Regia. The Romans besieged Decebalus's capital, which surrendered to them and was destroyed. The Dacian king and a handful of his faithful followers withdrew into the mountains, but their resistance was short-lived and Decebalus committed suicide. Other Dacian nobles, however, were captured or decided to surrender. One of the latter revealed the whereabouts of the Dacian royal treasury, which was of stupendous value: 500,000 pounds (226,800 kilograms) of gold and 1,000,000 pounds (453,600 kilograms) of silver.
It is an excellent idea of yours to write about the Dacian war. There is no subject which offers such scope and such a wealth of original material, no subject so poetic and almost legendary although its facts are true. You will describe new rivers set flowing over the land, new bridges built across rivers, and camps clinging to sheer precipices; you will tell of a king driven from his capital and finally to death, but courageous to the end; you will record a double triumph one the first over a nation hitherto unconquered, the other a final victory.
From the start the province’s political life was not without perils. Free Dacians came first, who, allied with the Sarmatians, frequently attacked the province. After the quieter reigns of Commodus (180-193), Septimius Severus (193-211), and Caracalla (211-217), the invasions of Dacia, in particular that by the Carpi (a Dacian tribe) in alliance with the Goths, were a serious problem for the emperors. It became more and more difficult to keep Dacia within the boundaries of the Roman Empire……Dacia, the last province to be added to the Roman Empire, became the first to be abandoned.”
Italy has many beautiful man-made splendors and historic cities that are well worth a visit, but I would like to see only these places firstly first. So, as soon as I finish repaying my student loans, I will start saving for the trip……this is going to take a while though...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CnBX0NnB5iY&feature=related "Basilicata Autentica", narrated by Director, Francis Ford Coppola