The Magnificent Passion of Lorenzo de’ Medici

The Medici, the dynasty that governed Renaissance Florence, blazed into the 21st century in a three-part Netflix series. While many dispute its historical accuracy, the  the lavish production captures the seize-the-day spirit of the age.  Certainly the handsome actor cast as the most magnificent Medici, bears little resemblance to the supremely but seductively ugly Lorenzo (1449-1492).

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For Love of Italy: Summer Newsletter from Dianne Hales

Come what may, people do what they love. Dancers dance; singers sing; actors perform; writers write. And so I’ve created a new book: “A” Is for Amore.  This letter-by-letter journey through the Italian alphabet, culled from decades of research, writing, and wandering, takes readers on a virtual tour of Italian treasures and pleasures, ranging from cucina to opera to vino.You can download the digital PDF for free—a small gift that I hope will entertain and uplift you.

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I Wrote A New Book on Italy–And It’s Free!

Not even a global pandemic can stop people from doing what they love. Over the last few months, we’ve seen dancers dance; singers sing; actors perform—wherever and whenever they could.  The same is true of writers. While sheltering at home in California, I’ve created a new book: “A” Is for Amore.  You can download the digital PDF for free —a small gift that I hope will entertain and uplift you.

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Boccaccio’s Decameron: A Passion for Life in a Time of Death

The plague of 1348, the greatest disaster to befall Italy in a thousand years, killed a quarter of  Florence’s citizens. Giovanni Boccaccio, the great raconteur who inspired storytellers from Chaucer to Dickens to Twain, responded to the daily horror with the most exuberant, entertaining, death-defying work of literature the world had seen: the Decameron,  Italian’s first great prose narrative, hailed as “a book of the love of life.”

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Celebrating La Mamma Italiana and Mother’s Day

Traditionally la festa della mamma in Italy fell on May 8. The current practice of celebrating Mother’s Day on the second Sunday of May started in 1957. But la mamma italiana is the center of her family’s life every day of the year. Men may hold the highest political offices, but the person at the helm of the family—the strongest Italian institution—is Mamma.

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Coronavirus in the Italian Language  

At the forefront of everyone’s mind at the moment is the coronavirus, which  has caused a devastating pandemic throughout the world. If you are currently studying Italian and want to be able to converse with Italian speakers about the coronavirus, you will need to learn some new and related vocabulary.

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