There is the fantasy version of this trip. And there is the possible version. Let’s go with fantasy …
Day 109 and 110: Flight from Malta to Rome – 1 hour 30 minutes. Flight from Rome to Split, Croatia – 1 hour 15 minutes. But there are no Judith’s in Split? Why make the side trip?
To stay in my own hotel: Palaca Judita.
Split is the hometown of Marko Marulić, who wrote the epic poem Judita (1501) – the first modern work of Croatian literature. The hotel is named in his honor and in honor of the heroine he chose to represent Croatia. Set within the retirement palace of the Roman Emperor Diocletian, the hotel is on St Lawrence Square within the Pavlovic Palace. fittingly, re-named for me.
Day 111: Back to the grind of viewing the artwork of Judith (said lovingly). And what better way to go back than a slow boat – actually the most prudent way to rejoin my route: a ferry from Split to Ancona, Italy. A 12 hour trip – leaving at 8 pm.
Day 112: Arriving refreshed in Ancona at 8 am and heading to Fano by half-hour train to look for a Judith by the hometown favorite, Ceccarini. The painting is located a 15 minute walk from the station in Pinacoteca Civica di Fano, part of the Corte Malatestiana. The 14th century section includes a great vaulted hall and small turret; the modern part was built around 1420 and heavily restored in the 20th century. The Art Gallery is located inside the Palazzo Malatestiano – which still has two-lighted Gothic windows in carved brick, both on the side overlooking the courtyard and on the opposite side.
Mon – closed; Tues-Sun: 9.30 am -12.30 pm and 4.00 pm – 7.00 pm
One hour and 20 minutes from Fano is Faenza, the home of “faience” or majolicaware glazed earthenware pottery. That explains the presence of the International Museum of Ceramics, but my destination is Pinacoteca Comunale di Faenza where the ambiguous Judith of Maffei is displayed. Or maybe it is Salome.
only open Sat and Sun (Oct-May) 10 am to 6 pm, (June-Sept) 10 am – 1 pm and 3 pm to 7 pm
40 minutes more to Bologna will plant me in the centrally located Hotel San Donato – where I can start fresh the next day.
From the hotel, a 7 minute stroll up the Via Zamboni (Zamboni!) deposits me on the doorstep of the Pinacoteca Nacional de Bolonia. A treasure house of Judith’s: two by Giuseppi Marchesi, one each by Guido Cagnacci and Leonello Spada. The museum is adjacent to the University of Bologna – founded in 1088 which makes it the oldest university in the world. Funny – strolling across campus could make me feel like the oldest university student in the world.
Mon – closed; Tues-Sat: 9 am – 2 pm; Sun: 9 am – 1 pm;
The next stop of the day is a 15 walk along the Strada Maggiore to the Chiesa del Santissimo Salvatore where I hope to find Donducci‘s cleverly titled Judith and the Jewish Girls. Sounds like a sleep-over.
check for hours open to viewing
And only 5 more minutes on Via 4 Novembre to Piazza Malpighi brings me to Ritiro di San Pellegrino (Retreat of San Pellegrino) – a school based on the foundation of worship and religion. It also inherited about 140 paintings, along with some drawings and sculptures, all dating from the 16th to the 19th century – including a Judith by Lavinia Fontana. Looks like I will have to contact them for permission to view that work since they are not a museum.
Only a 15 minute walk along the Via Ugo Bassi to the hotel – past the Fountain of Neptune (oh my! that’s not like the one back home!!)