We made a short stop in Verona, Italy on route to Austria. We didn’t have a very prolonged period of time and so we did the city as much justice as time allowed. We walked to the Verona Arena and viewed the grand stadium that showcased thousands of operas over the years. There were Italians dressed in the attire of the Gladiators prowling around the outskirts of the building. This all contributed to the fantastic atmosphere of this famous city.
“Two households, both alike in dignity,
In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,
From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,
Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.
From forth the fatal loins of these two foes
A pair of star-cross’d lovers take their life;
Whole misadventured piteous overthrows
Do with their death bury their parents’ strife.”
These are the opening lines to the famous play by William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliette. As the quote suggests, this romantic tragedy was set in the city of Verona. All the curios were centred around these star crossed lovers and their tragic story. We, of course, had to make the visit to Juliette’s home.
We walked into the courtyard through walls that were decorated with the names of sworn lovers. These walls then spread out into the quant courtyard ridden with tourists. This area was the setting for a few of the scenes of the movie ‘Letters to Juliette’. Overlooking this courtyard was Juliette’s famous balcony where one of the most well-known lines of Shakespeare’s play were spoken.
“But soft! What light through yonder window breaks?
It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.
Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,
Who is already sick and pale with grief,
That thou, her maid, art far more fair than she.”
The statue of Juliette was the centre of all the attention as people from all around the world queued to have the stereotypical photograph taken of them clutching Juliette’s breast. The walls of the courtyard were covered in letters that had been stuck to the wall with chewing gum. These letters were written to Juliette by young men and women pouring their hearts out to this romantic goddess. The gate at the end of the courtyard was absolutely covered with love locks from couples who had left a piece of their romantic journey in this romantically idolised place.
Verona was altogether beautiful and visiting Juliette’s home was most definitely a highlight for me.