7: Lecce

[…] I sensed something Spanish in the atmosphere of Lecce, in the gravity and dignity of its people, in the formality of their manners and in the elaborate architecture of their background, which reminded me of Spanish baroque in those regions where the stone cuts like butter and hardens like steel. Lecce’s baroque is not spectacular, but is a style based on the classical, and having explore the cathedral, the bishop’s palace, several churches, some streets with lovely carved stone balconies, the noble Porta Rusce [Rudie], and several ornate palaces, I thought that the exotic overcoat of carving superimposed upon classical façades had more in common with the late Roman temples of Syria, for example, Baalbec, than with the Jesuitical extravagancas of Rome.

H. V. Morton 1969: A Traveller in Southern Italy. S. 166

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