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Rome

  • In Rome people spend most of their time having lunch. And they do it very well — Rome is unquestionably the lunch capital of the world.

  • Rome in the ages, dimmed with all her towers, / Floats in the mist, a little cloud at tether.

  • In Rome people seem to love with more zest, murder with more imagination, submit to creative urges more often, and lose the sense of logic more easily than in any other place.

  • Rome so beautiful, so great; her presence stupifies, and one has to withdraw to prize the treasures she has given. City of the Soul! yes, it is that; the very dust magnetizes you, and thousand spells have been chaining you in every careless, every murmuring moment.

  • Those have not lived who have not seen Rome.

    • Margaret Fuller,
    • 1848, in Robert N. Hudspeth, ed., The Letters of Margaret Fuller, vol. 5 ()
  • Rome is ... an impossible compounding of time, in which no century has respect for any other and all hit you in a jumble at every turn ...

  • Rome is everybody's memory ...

  • Even a tourist can tell in a Roman street that he is in something and not outside of something as he would be in most cities. In Rome to go out is to go home.

  • The Roman form of serenade is to race a motorcycle motor under the girl's window, but mufflers are not common in any situation; the only things as dearly loved as a good noise are breakneck speed and eye-splitting lights, preferably neon — all expressions of well-being, like a huge belly-laugh.

  • It is like a party all the time; nobody has to worry about giving one or being invited; it is going on every day in the street and you can go down or be part of it from your window ...

  • Once arrived in that city of fabulous antiquity and sunshine, I settled into a small but charming hotel where the view was excellent and every meal a sonnet.

  • The Romans consult the calendar instead of the thermometer to find out whether it is hot or cold.

  • ... I was shocked numb to discover that Rome is full of Italians. The Rome I had had in mind was a solemn museum, maintained by just enough native personnel to keep it functioning for the tourist trade.

  • Faithful to custom, I watched the sun set on my first day in Rome from the Pincio terrace in the Villa Borghese. ... I hadn't known until then that the sun saves all the leftover gold from the day to pour over Rome.

  • ... Time the healer (Time the killer) flies faster here in Rome than anywhere else in the world, I believe ... here in Rome there are or seem to be strange differences in the value of things. For instance, the pound weight, instead of being sixteen ounces, is only twelve; the foot measure, instead of being twelve inches, is only nine; and I think, in some way, this must apply to time as well, so that the hour, instead of being sixty minutes long, is only forty-five!

  • Rome is the city above all cities which loses most of its meaning to those who do not bring to it some historical sense, a decent knowledge of art, and a good amount of time. Rome therefore is particularly disturbing to an American.

  • Night doesn't fall in Rome; it rises from the city's heart, from the gloomy little alleys and courtyards where the sun never gets much more than a brief look-in, and then, like the mist from the Tiber, it creeps over the rooftops and spreads up into the hills.

  • Rome's riches are in too immediate juxtaposition. Under the lid of awful August heat, one moves dizzily from church to palace to fountain to ruin, a single fly at a banquet, not knowing where to light.

  • How is the newcomer to deal with Rome? What is one to make of this marble rubble, this milk of wolves, this blood of Caesars, this sunrise of Renaissance, this baroquery of blown stone, this warm hive of Italians, this antipasto of civilization?


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  • When one has once lived in Rome there is no place afterward.

    • ,
    • 1854, in Lilian Whiting, Women Who Have Ennobled Life ()