Pietra di bologna

Ghisilardi Fava Palace - The enigma of the Bologna Stone

Palazzo Ghisilardi-Fava is one of the most illustrious examples of Renaissance palace in Bologna, a building constructed between 1484 and 1491. The palace, which currently houses the Civic Medieval Museum of Bologna, contains a truly mysterious object: the so-called Stone of Bologna.

The stone, located inside the Lapidarium, is a Latin inscription for Aelia Laelia Crispis, probably dating back to the 16th century, and also known as the "enigma of Aelia Laelia Crispis". It is engraved on a rectangular stone, and seems to be a false funerary inscription. In addition, it is dedicated by a man who hid behind the pseudonym of Lucius Agatho Priscius to a mysterious woman called precisely Aelia Laelia Crispis.

The origins of this stone are rather doubtful. It was noticed for the first time near the complex of Santa Maria di Casaralta, erected in the 13th century as a priory of the order of the Gaudenti friars. Later, the text on its surface (now illegible) was copied onto a new slab of red marble. This copy is the "Stone of Bologna" visible today.

But what does the text indicate? The inscription of Aelia Laelia Crispis has always aroused great interest, especially in the alchemical field. According to some theories, in the epigraph, created by the Gaudenti friars, who for some historians would have been the exponents of an esoteric sect, there would in fact be indicated the alchemical steps by means of which it would be possible to recreate in the laboratory the Philosopher's Stone. The stone able to give eternal life and to transform lead into gold. What is certain is that to date no one has yet managed to turn the enigma of Aelia Laelia Crispis.
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La leggenda della Torre degli Asinelli

Asinelli Tower - The legend

Among the many legends that concern the historical center of ancient Bologna, there is a very special one, very dear to the people of Bologna. It is the legend of the Asinelli Tower.

This legend tells that once upon a time, in Bologna, there was a hard-working farmer who longed to improve the life of his family by expanding his possessions. Therefore, he constantly dreamed of getting rich and giving his loved ones everything they desired.

One fine day, it seems that one of his donkeys fortuitously stumbled upon a trunk, hidden in the ground of a field. As a result, the trunk soon revealed its precious contents: it was filled with precious stones and gold of inestimable value.
In spite of his happiness, the man decided not to tell anyone about what had happened, not even his family. As time went by, gradually, the tenor of his loved ones simply improved. And he jealously guarded his secret, never uttering a word.

After that, the man's son, having become an adult, one day walked in front of the house of a nobleman from Bologna, and fell madly in love with the beautiful girl he saw at the window of his house. It was the daughter of the nobleman, who soon began to reciprocate his love. The problem was her humble origins, since the nobleman would never allow his daughter to marry him. The only way for the young man to realize his dream of love would have been to raise the highest tower in Bologna.

But how could he accomplish such a feat? His joy was great when one day, back home, he confided to his father his torments and he offered him the solution: the treasure of the donkeys.
After that, ten years later, the construction of the tower was completed. In conclusion, the rich nobleman finally agreed to the marriage and the tallest tower in Bologna was dedicated to the lucky donkeys.

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