Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Happy Birthday, Dear Venezia, Happy New Year to You!

(Venice, Italy) That image you see, Neptune Offering Gifts to Venice, by Giambattista Tiepolo is my favorite image of Venice, and can be found in the Palazzo Ducale.

That image speaks as much today as it did about 300 years ago. Neptune yearns to buy his way into Venice's secrets. It is not the right approach. Venice holds back the sea Himself with a firm, seductive finger, her arm draped upon a lion's head. She is vulnerable, yet strong. She is sensuous, yet particular. She is not off-limits -- she can be had -- but not simply for a cornucopia full of coins.

Today is Venice's birthday. She was born on March 25, 421 at twelve o'clock noon at Rialto. March 25th was also celebrated as New Years Day in England not that long ago -- up until 1752. It falls very close to the Vernal Equinox, and the first day of spring. It is also marks the Annunciation, the day that Gabriel (the angel) told Mary that she was going to give birth to the Son of God. So, March 25th is a particular kind of day.

From Wikipedia:

In Christianity, the Annunciation (Ancient Greek: Εὐαγγελισμὸς τῆς Θεοτόκου, Euangelismós tēs Theotókou) is the revelation to Mary, the mother of Jesus, by the angel Gabriel that she would conceive a child to be born the Son of God. Some Christian churches celebrate this with the Feast of Annunciation on March 25, which as the Incarnation is nine months before the feast of the Nativity of Jesus, or Christmas. The date of the Annunciation also marked the New Year in many places, including England (where it is called Lady Day).

Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday, dear Venice
Buon compleanno a Te.

Ciao from Venice,
Venetian Cat - Venice Blog