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Overview of Umbria

Pauline Kenny

For complete information about every corner of Umbria, visit Bill Thayer's Gazetteer of Italy.

On September 26 1997, an earthquake struck the Foligno area of Umbria. It caused a lot of damage in the nearby towns (Assisi, Spello, Trevi, etc.). When we were in this are in October 2000, things were still being worked on from the earthquake damage.

Market Days

Almost every town in Tuscany and Umbria has a weekly market. These are usually held in the morning. Markets in Italy are a strange sight. A dozen or more trucks pull up and create the market. There will be several food vendors - vegetables, cheese, and the usual truck with a big cooked pig on display where you get porcetta sandwiches. There will also be stalls selling hardware supplies, shoes, clothes, cooking supplies, drugstore things, etc. Sort of like a Walmart on wheels. These markets are usually crowded with local townspeople. This is where much of the shopping is done.

Spello: Wednesday mornings, just outside the town gates in the lower part of town.

Spello, Montefalco and Bevegna

Spello

Santa Maria Maggiore on right side of Via Cavour before the main square. The Cappella Baglioni in the left aisle painted by Pinturicchio in 1501. Annunciation, the Adoration of the Shepherds, Christ among the Doctors. In the Annunciation scene, you can see a portrait of the artist hanging on the wall behind the Virgin.

Continuing up Via Cavour, also on the right just past the church, is a very nice art gallery.

Montefalco

Gozzoli's fresco cycle of the Story of St. Francis (1452) in the church of San Francesco, downhill from the main Piazza del Commune. Also a Perugino "Adoration of the Shepherds".

Bevagna

To find the Roman baths: Up Corso Matteotti from Piazza Silvestri, left on Via Crescimbeni, first left on Via Porta Guelfa (no sign). Baths are inside a building a few doors down on your right.

Bettona

If you have time, you can also go to Bettona, a very small town with a small art gallery that has some Peruginos.

To be continued ...

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