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Villa di Negro – The old zoo

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Villetta di Negro is an area overlooking the verdant Piazza Corvetto. But don't look for the little villa, because it no longer exists. It was razed to the ground by bombs during the Second World War. On the other hand, its park is enchanting and reveals all the typical elements of turn-of-the-century areas. Only a few aviaries, now empty, are surprising. They seem to be all that remains of the villa's real attraction, the zoo, once inhabited by ferocious animals. The garden has now disappeared, but it had an exceptional witness: a very young Cesare Pavese, who visited the town with scouts in 1922. Pavese kept a diary of that holiday, a diary that only reappeared in 2008 and was published under the title 'Dodici giorni al mare' (Twelve days at the sea), in which, among other things, he carefully describes the superb beasts housed here.

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