BOTANICAL GARDENS - MEDIAEVAL PERUGIA Print

The city of Perugia is able to harmonize the streets and historic buildings with the modern Minimetrò, a futuristic type of urban transportation.

At the same time, we come across a corner of the town in which the Middle Ages are still alive, in the Botanical Gardens, maintained by the Faculty of Agriculture of the University of Perugia.

They are near the monumental Benedictine complex of San Pietro, in Borgo XX Giugno, a central area of the provincial capital. In 1996, a special section was opened inside the Botanical Garden of the Faculty, in which aromatic, alimentary and healthy cultivations may be found, as well as medical and medicinal herbs. It was rebuilt, similarly to the past, as an integral part of the Abbey. The monastic garden had a strong symbolic value. This trait was quite typical at that time, having a function that was not only aesthetic, but was also a vehicle of evangelization, capable of transmitting doctrine and teachings to numerous illiterates.

Within the monastic gardens, besides the useful plants, religious allegories could be found, like the water metaphor of Christ, as a source of eternal life or the Tree of Life, narrated by the Genesis. Within the reconstructed medieval Garden, you can now see some of the emblematic stages of the spiritual and historical journey of humanity, passing from the Garden of Eden to the original sin, from rationality to domination, from creativity to community, from religion to culture and from aesthetics to holiness. Visiting the medieval garden allows you to increase your knowledge of the cultural and anthropological aspects that were typical of the past. However, it is also an opportunity for botany lovers to encounter a variety of species used by the monks themselves.  When strolling in this pleasant garden, you may get the the impression that you are going back in time and you can almost forget the hectic routine outside its walls. The gate and the mediaeval public road inside the complex are also of interest.

It is interesting to spend some time in the larger botanical gardens of the Faculty too. Here, there are, among other things, an alpine garden, a Zen garden and a pond with ombrophilous plants. You you can admire the splendid church of San Pietro, annexed to the Abbey‘s agricultural branch. Just A few metres away, you can stroll through the gardens of the Frontone, a historic green space in the city. Continuing on, towards Corso Cavour, the imposing church of San Domenico also deserves a visit.


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