I would like to go back to the Age of Exploration, and thus to another important Florentine navigator that deserves a great tribute: Giovanni da Verrazano, who lived between 1485 and 1528, and who has become famous for discovering the New York Bay and the Eastern Coast of the United States of America.

There is no much information about the life (and death) of this navigator, but we know for sure where he was born: in the castle that bears the name of his family, deep in the Chianti hills near Greve, in 1485. Like other Italian explorers of that Age of Discovery, from the Genoese Cristoforo Colombo (Christopher Columbus) to the Venetian Giovanni Caboto (John Cabot) and the Florentine Amerigo Vespucci, Verrazano was also forced to leave his land to pursue his dreams of adventure in “foreign land”, that means, to accomplish his feats at the service of other European countries: in his case the France of King Francis I.

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In these days we celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the death of Don (Father) Lorenzo Milani, a priest that for many years was considered a thorny figure, and therefore often marginalized and left alone by the Church; recently, though, a reconciliation has been attempted, as shown by the visit of Pope Francis to his tomb.

My words here below are meant to be an introduction to the life, character and activity of Don  Lorenzo Milani, that I invite you to explore further through writings by and about him, to discover the unique and special man he was.

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