Naples - a beautiful city in southern Italy, but this beauty, sandwiched between the sea and the volcano Vesuvius, it is difficult to immediately feel. The most hectic, the noisiest among the already not quiet Italian cities, a little gloomy and always sunny at the same time. It is associated with world history, and Russian as well. The entire center of Naples is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Many Italian artists were born and worked in Naples (for example, Salvador Rosa). Naples is the birthplace of the heroic doll Pulcinella and the birthplace of many beloved pizza. Naples is also the birthplace of the beloved actors Eduardo De Filippo, Toto and Sophia Loren.
But above all, he is associated with music. Here were born composers D. Cimarosa, D. Scarlatti, R. Leoncovallo, singer E. Caruso. Here worked D. Rossini, D.-B. Pergolese and D. Puccini. And here the romantic guitar (the first six-string) and mandolin, as well as opera-buff and opera-series were born, and the largest and oldest opera theater in the world was built here. And famous Neapolitan songs (“Oh, Sole Myo”, “Santa Lucia”, “Come back to Sorrento”) are known all over the world. Russian composers (Tchaikovsky) wrote their “Neapolitan songs”. Even our already immortal “Uno, Uno, Uno, Uno Momento” is a tracing from the Neapolitan melody.
Naples is also a clot of history. Founded by Greek settlers in the VIII century BC. er ("New city"), then became part of the Roman Empire. In the fortress Castel del Ovo (“egg fortress” - either because of its peculiar form, or because of the legend that Virgil hid the egg there) in the V century Romulus Augustulus, the last emperor of the Western Roman Empire, was imprisoned.
And then - a rich history: Byzantium, the Sicilian kingdom, the war. The main defender of the city - our common saint - Januarius (died in the year 305). September 19 - The day of memory of this saint and at the same time - the day of the city of Naples (in the Orthodox Church, the day of memory of the saint - May 4). We Neapolitans with Yanuariy signed a formal contract, which was even notarized, with signatures.
The attitude of citizens to their patron is extremely serious and at the same time peculiar: it is believed that with one wave of the hand Yanuariy redirected the lava during the next eruption of Vesuvius (a special holiday on December 16), while in 1799 they wanted to judge the saint "for treason" (this story is remarkably described in A. Dumas in the book "Louise San Felice"). However, it is an exceptionally revered saint.
All his relics are in the city, including the famous vials containing the blood of the saint. As is known, a miracle has been performed regularly since 1389, moreover, twice or thrice a year: dilution and even blood boiling. The researchers clarified the issue a little, but the essence remains: for the Neapolitans, this is a real miracle ...
The life of Naples was indirectly connected with Russia. On the sides of the garden gates of the Royal Palace in Naples are equestrian statues from Anichkov Bridge in St. Petersburg, once donated to the “King of both Sicilies” by Nicholas I in gratitude for the hospitality shown to the empress. In the same building in 1717, Prince Alexei took refuge before arrest and extradition to Russia.
But most of all with Russian Naples were admirals who “visited” there with victories. F. Ushakov knocked out the French from Naples, and a squadron under the command of Admiral Dmitry Senyavin during the liberation of Italy, the famous Neapolitan castle Castel Nuovo took possession.
Finally, many are familiar to one Italian Neapolitan, whose father, however, was Spaniard, his mother - Scottish (but the main thing is the place of birth). The most famous Odessa street named Deribasovskaya is named after him. Jose de Ribas, or Osip M. Deribas (June 6, 1749, Naples - December 14, 1800, St. Petersburg) - Russian admiral, distinguished himself in the Russian-Turkish wars. His feat during the capture of Ishmael was mentioned by George Byron in the poem "Don Juan". And the inhabitants of Odessa, in memory of the construction of the city, in which Deribas also participated, immortalized his name in the name of the street.
And Naples continues to live and seethe. After all, everything else, the city also - the birthplace of the oldest in Italy, along with Sicilian, organized crime. When they talk about the Italian mafia, different concepts mix a little. Mafia, in the strict sense of the word, is an exclusively Sicilian phenomenon.
And in Naples, there has always been a separate largest group - Camorra. She even enjoyed the patronage of monarchs, because she supplied with her hand spies, and executioners too. Actually, this organization is still fully in force. In March of this year, a 100,000 demonstration was held in the city with the participation of the author of the book “Gomorrah” translated into 50 languages (the word is pronounced in Italian) - Roberto Saviano, requiring radical measures to combat organized crime. Roberto Saviano (born September 22, 1979), who wrote a revealing novel and received unequivocal threats from Camorra, has been walking for several years only accompanied by municipal guards. Umberto Eco considers him a national hero.
Books, several films and even one opera are devoted to Camorra (composer Wolf-Ferrari - 1876−1948 - son of the famous German artist A. Wolf, the opera is called “Madonna’s Necklace”), pop songs. And it is precisely with Camorra that the biggest crisis continues in Naples - Garbage Crisis. The garbage in a city of almost 1.5 million people suddenly became no one to clean, they began to burn it right on the streets. And with precipitation in the city is not thick. The situation is still not completely resolved.
A city of conspicuous social contrasts, in which, rather, poverty is more visible (perhaps due to the fact that the rich in the center prefer not to live like ours). A city full of immigrants, legal and illegal (after all - the largest port). A city that remains very beautiful, no matter what.
I do not know whether the siren managed to sing its farewell song. But the city turned out good. Real and very lively.