Buried: Cimitero Accatolico, Florence, Città Metropolitana di Firenze, Toscana, Italy, Plot: B11C/ B42/ 1194
The English Cemetery in Florence, Italy is at Piazzale Donatello. Its names, 'Cimitero Inglese' and 'Cimitero Protestante' are somewhat misleading, as the cemetery holds bodies of Orthodox Christians as well as those of many Reformed Churches; but the majority of those buried here were of the Anglophone British and American communities of Florence.
Address: Piazzale Donatello, 38, 50132 Firenze, Italy (43.77716, 11.26858)
Type: Cemetery (open to public)
Phone: +39 055 582608
Before 1827 non-Catholics and non-Jews who died in Florence could be buried in Livorno only. In 1827 the Swiss Evangelical Reformed Church bought land outside the medieval wall and gate of Porta a' Pinti at Florence from Leopold II, Grand Duke of Tuscany for an international and ecumenical cemetery, Russian and Greek Orthodox burials joining the Protestant ones. Carlo Reishammer, a young architectural student, landscaped the cemetery, then Giuseppe Poggi shaped it as its present oval when Florence became capital of Italy. He surrounded it with studios for artists, including that of Michele Gordigiani (who painted the portraits of Elizabeth Barrett and Robert Browning, now in the National Portrait Gallery, London). Many famous people are buried in the graveyard like Elizabeth Barrett Browning (in a tomb designed by Frederic, Lord Leighton); her son Pen Browning is buried at Cimitero Evangelico agli Allori. Florence has always been a place were queer people from all over the world came due to its acceptance, wherelse in other countries was impossible to live. We cannot say if the following were really all queer couples, or maybe just special friends, the fact is that some of them chose to be buried near to each other.
Notable queer burials at Cimitero Acattolico:
• Emilia Sophia Macpherson Abadam Adams (1776-1831) was the grandmother of both Alice Abadam, the suffragette, and Vernon Lee (aka Violet Page), the writer.
• Charles Bankhead, M.D. (1768-1859), George IV's Physician Extraordinary, he was the physician in attendance at Castlereagh's suicide.
• Isa or Isabella Jane Blagden (1816 or 1817–1873) was an English-language novelist and poet born in the East Indies or India, who spent much of her life among the English community in Florence. Some of the surviving letters to Blagden from Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Robert Browning are demonstrably affectionate. (Unfortunately Blagden's letters to them have not survived.) "Isa, perfect in companionship, as in other things," Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote of her. In one letter to Isa in the summer of 1859, she wrote: "My ever dearest, kindest Isa, I can't let another day go without writing just a word to say that I am alive enough to love you." In another from Paris a year earlier, Elizabeth Barrett Browning states that they had arrived "having lost nothing – neither a carpet-bag nor a bit of our true love for you."
• Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861), died in her husband's arms. Robert Browning said that she died "smilingly, happily, and with a face like a girl's.... Her last word was... ''Beautiful". "On Monday July 1 the shops in the area around Casa Guidi were closed, while Elizabeth was mourned with unusual demonstrations." The nature of her illness is still unclear. Some modern scientists speculate her illness may have been hypokalemic periodic paralysis, a genetic disorder that causes weakness and many of the other symptoms she described.
• George Frederic Waihinger (1800-1867), German, was the beloved head waiter/butler to the Prince Demidoff of San Donato. Count Anatoly or Anatoli (called Anatole) Nikolaievich Demidov, 1st Prince of San Donato (1813–1870), was a Russian industrialist, diplomat and arts patron of the Demidov family.
• William Edgeworth (1832-1833), a one-year-old child unlisted in the Peerage though his two siblings Antonio Eroles and Francis Ysidro are. His mother is the Spanish Mariquita Eroles' sister, Rosa Florentina Eroles Edgeworth. His aunt is Maria Edgeworth, the great Irish novelist. He is buried in same plot with David (1807-1833) and Mary Reid (1833-1833), first husband and daughter of Mariquita Eroles, and Rev. Robert John Tennant (1809-1842), second husband of Mariquita. Mariquita Dorotea Francesca Tennant, née Eroles (1811–1860), is known as a social reformer. She is commemorated for helping the impoverished women of Windsor.
• Mary Farhill (1784-1854), small, clever, generous and eccentric, she was ennobled in Fiesole's Order of St Stephen. Farhill was found drowned in her bath at 70 years old. Though in Florence they thought she had no family when she died at the Villa il Palmerino, her brother Edward Farhill carefully arranged her burial in both English and Italian in a grand tomb. The Morning Post noted she willed her villa to the Grand Duchess of Tuscany, Maria Antonia. In the 1870s it came into the possession of the Earl of Belcarres and Crawford, Lord Lindsay. Dumas and Queen Victoria were guests under its roof. It later became Vernon Lee's residence.
• Harriet Theodosia Fisher, nee Garrow (1811-1848), half-sister of Theodosia Trollope, is buried with their maid, Elizabeth Shinner (1811-1852).
• James Lorimer "Lorrie" Graham, Jr (1831-1876), American Maecenas, married, gay, founded Graham's Magazine, had wealth, was shipwrecked and injured, appointed American Consul in Florence by President Grant, occupied the Palazzo di Valfonda, Claire Claremont (Mary Shelley's stepsister, who bore Lord Byron the child Allegra), lodging with him, and he collected autographs, books, paintings which he willed to the Century Association, New York, which sold them at auction.
• Hadrian Marryat (1845-1873). His maternal grandfather was General Lord Robert Edward Henry Somerset of Badminton House and his grandmother, Lady Louisa Augusta Courtenay, daughter of William Courtenay, 8th Earl of Devon, of Powderham Castle. The three Marryat children were painted in 1851-2 in Rome by the young Frederick Leighton.
• Clara Anastasia Novello (1818-1908), was an acclaimed soprano, the fourth daughter of Vincent Novello, a musician and music publisher, and his wife, Mary Sabilla Hehl. In 1843 she married Count Gigliucci, and retired in 1861. Clara Novello Davies (1861-1943), a well-known Welsh singer, teacher and conductor was named after Clara Novello. She married David Davies, a solicitor's clerk with the same surname as her own- Their son, David Ivor Davies, became better known as Ivor Novello, the actor, composer, dramatist and director.
• Eugene Polyakov (1943-1996), a Russian-trained balletmaster who was Rudolf Nureyev's chief assistant when Nureyev was director of the Paris Opera Ballet in the 1980's. Polyakov was born in Moscow and trained at the Bolshoi Ballet before leaving Russia for Venice in 1976. He formed his own troupe, Viva la Danza, there in 1977 and was the dance director of the Teatro Comunale in Florence from 1978 to 1983, when Nureyev appointed him balletmaster. Polyakov worked again in Florence from 1992 to 1995, when he returned to the Paris Opera Ballet. He died in Paris, but asked to be buried in Florence.
• Elena Raffalovich Comparetti (1842-1918) was an educator , intellectual and froebeliana Russian. She was the third daughter of Leo Raffalovich (1813-1879), wealthy jew landowner, and Rosette (Rosa) Mondel Loevensohn (1807-1895). The family moved to Paris. The older sister Maria Raffalovich, married to their uncle Hermann, is the mother of Marc André Raffalovich and great friend of Claude Bernard.
• William Reader of Banghurst House, Hampshire (1787-1846). His original tombstone identifies Henry Austin as his faithful servant; Austin died in Florence on July 5, 1859, age 40,
• The tomb of Mary Anne Salisbury (1798-1848) was placed by the Catholic wife of the last descendant of Michelangelo Buonarotti, Rosina, beneath a great yew tree at the entrance of the English Cemetery. It was tradition to have two yew trees, poisonous to cattle but essential for the English long bow of Agincourt in English graveyards, which also symbolize the Jachin and Boaz columns of the Jerusalem Temple. Only one yew tree remains and a falling branch from it destroyed this tomb, now replaced by the Rotary Club, 23/4/2012. The busts of Count Cosimo Buonarroti and Rosina which grace the Michelangelo museum at the Casa Buonarroti were sculpted by Aristodemo Costoli.
• James Bansfield’s tomb and that of King William IV's son's wife, Lady Georgina Hacking Hamilton Sewell, lie on either side of the king's natural son, Sir William Henry Sewell, each being apparently equal to Sir William. “Known as a servant above a servant a brother beloved. James died January 11, 1862. He was for 20 years the faithful and devoted servant of General Sir W.H. Sewell, K.C.B. by whose widow this tomb was raised.”
• Eleanore Emilie Contessa Stenbock-Fermor (1815-1859) was the daughter of Count Magnus Stenbock-Fermor, Russian Colonel. Her Oxford-educated PreRaphaelite poet nephew was Eric Stenbock.
• Theodosia Trollope, born Theodosia Garrow (1816–1865) was an English poet, translator, and writer known also for her marriage into the Trollope family. She married and bought a villa in Florence, Italy with her husband, Thomas Adolphus Trollope. Her hospitality made her home the centre of British society in the city. Her writings in support of the Italian nationalists are credited with changing public opinions.
Queer Places, Vol. 3 edited by Elisa Rolle
Release Date: July 24, 2016
CreateSpace Store: https://www.createspace.com/6228901
Amazon (print): http://www.amazon.com/dp/1532906692/?tag=elimyrevandra-20
Amazon Kindle: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01IZXI10E/?tag=elimyrevandra-20
This journal is friends only. This entry was originally posted at http://reviews-and-ramblings.dreamwidth.org/4977603.html. If you are not friends on this journal, Please comment there using OpenID.