Pedaling through the cycle paths of Rome – Cristina Galardini’s Vlog.
As always, if you haven’t seen the previous episode, here’s the link.
We will begin our round from Via Tiburtina. Via Tiburtina was a consular way built by the consul Marco Valerio Massimo we think around 286 B.C. and joined Rome to Tibur (Tivoli) destination especially of pilgrims who went to the sanctuaries of Tibur.
Today, the Studios are very famous in Via Tiburtina, where several television programs are recorded. We don’t know when it was built but it’s certainly one of the oldest way in Lazio for the connection with Rome of the cities affinities and especially of the Latin and Sabine cities. The area along Via Tiburtina, has always been a place of burial.
Here was built the cemetery of Verano adjacent to the Basilica of San Lorenzo fuori le mura. Now its incorporated to the cemetery Catacombs of Santa Ciriaca, where was buried San Lorenzo, on whose tomb the Basilica and the Convent were built.
The modern cemetery was established during the Napoleonic reign of 1805-1814 on a project by Giuseppe Valadier from 1807 to 1812, in accordance with the edict of Saint Cloud of 1804, which imposed the burials outside the city walls.
The work continued with the pontificates of Gregorio XVI and Pio IX when, under the direction of Virginio Vespignani, the project had a definitive structure and other land were purchased. The Verano Cemetery, with its heritage of artwork, is a kind of open-air museum with an inestimable value expecially for cultural story about the mid-nineteenth century to the entire twentieth century.
The cemetery entrance is imposing with three arches, and four large statues representing Meditation, Hope, Charity and Silence. We come back to the cycle path to cross San Lorenzo district that takes its name from the nearby basilica of San Lorenzo fuori le mura.
The urbanization of the area made in XIX century, when Roma was unified to the Kingdom of Italy and becoming capital, knowing a great urban development.
Before then, beyond the Mura Aureliane there was a substantially agricultural landscape, interrupted only by Basilica of San Lorenzo and the first area of the Verano cemetery. In 1922, it was the only district in Roma where the people tried to stop the Marcia su Roma.
Furious fighting between fascists and “Arditi del Popolo”, who, helped by the population, blocked the entrance of the “squadristi”.
From this event San Lorenzo has the fame of “Red Quarter” with other historic districts of the capital, such as Testaccio. San Lorenzo was hardly attacked by a punitive expedition led by Italo Balbo. On July 19, 1943, during World War II, it was hit by the first bombing of Roma by the Allies, with the goal to attack the freight yard and the closer neighborhood.
At 11:03 a.m., 662 American bombers dropped 4,000 bombs on San Lorenzo. Although the bombings struck several areas to the east of the city, public ceremonies are still celebrating in San Lorenzo, for being the first and for the extensive damage and deaths caused, who anticipated the fall of fascism and the arrest of Benito Mussolini.
Today San Lorenzo is the main university district of Rome, frequented by young people and animated by numerous pubs, restaurants, clubs and cultural associations. To be unlucky when arrive the red light on the streetlight, and you were going down faster.