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Date: Friday, August 8, 1958
Place: Rome, Assisi, Florence
Weather: Nice

Felt a little better this morning. At least I was able to pack my own suitcases and eat some breakfast after not eating anything yesterday.

Stopped at Assisi for a tour of the church, and had the funniest priest from New York as a guide. We had a nice bus and John had me come up in front to sit with him for awhile. (I really will be spoiled.)

I guess Florence is the place to buy leather, silver, and silk and we have all day tomorrow to shop. Had a nice letter from Mom! Rooming with Judy S. – she just stuffed me full of pills and drops and keeps yelling at me to go to bed so guess I’d better.

Construction on the Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi began the day after the canonization of St. Francis in 1228 and was completed in 1253. The land for the church was donated to Pope Gregory IX by Simone di Pucciarello. The site had previously been used for state executions and was known as the “Hill of Hell”.

The church was designed by German architect Jacopo Tedesco. The basilica is made up of two churches known as the Upper Church and the Lower Church, and a crypt where the remains of St. Francis are buried. The burial place was kept a secret out of fear that the remains would be stolen.

Basilica of San Francesco d'Assisi

Basilica of San Francesco d’Assisi. Image courtesy of Jim Linwood via a Creative Commons license.

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