When is a ‘porta’ a door, and when is it a gate?
(And does it matter?)
Bologna, where I live, used to be surrounded by a defensive wall, much of which has now been demolished.
In olden times you’d only have been able to enter the city through one of the many fortified ‘gates’ (porte), and then only at certain times.
In emergencies, say if someone important had been murdered and the city needed to be ‘locked down’ in a hurry, the cathedral bells would ring to signal that all the gates should be closed.
Each of the twelve gates has a name. There’s a lot of variety in the architecture, too.
Take a look at Wikipedia’s Mura di Bologna page and scroll down to see the names and some pictures (where it says ‘Porte della terza cerchia’).
And/or use Google Street View to take a virtual tour of the city, a fine way to kill a Monday afternoon!
On quieter days at the school I’ll take a walk from the centre out along one of the main streets to the ‘porta’ at the end.
If I’m feeling energetic, from the gate I might walk around a segment of the ‘ring road’ (known as ‘il viale’) until the next ‘porta’, then follow the street that exits the city at that point back to the central piazza, and so back to my computer or classroom.
I keep meaning to walk the whole ‘viale’, all the way around the city until I get back to where I started from. But it’s quite a trek, and so would need the best part of an afternoon and some comfortable shoes…
Anyway, today we have a new ‘lesson in our’ embryonic ‘Expressions with…’ series.
This is number two. The word we’re focusing on this time is ‘la porta’ (the door/the gate – which? You decide!)
Here’s the link:
You’ll find the other in the series on our ‘New’ page, here.
More are coming.
Bene, allora. A mercoledì!