Milan is like a non-stop caleidoscope. The city whose streets are jammed with fashionistas and lined with upscale restaurants, is a historical jewel. The precious past is illuminated here in every building, street, square and park.
Ready for a dive into history? Our Moscow tour guide Anna traveled to Milan collected some interesting facts for you.
- According to archaeologists, Milan was founded by the Celts in 600 BC. The Romans named the town Mediolanum, which means Mediterranean in Latin.
- Milan is the second largest Italian city (after Rome). Also, this city has a reputation as the economic capital of Italy.
- In 1833, the great composer Giuseppe Verdi came to Milan to enter the Conservatory, but he was not accepted. Among the reasons for this failure was poor level of piano playing and lack of musical talent. Now this Milan Conservatory bears the name of the “rejected” composer.
- The first stone of the Milan Cathedral was laid in 1386, and it was completed only in 80-ies of the XIX century. Thus the construction of this Cathedral lasted for nearly 500 years.
- In the famous Milan’s Palazzo Serbelloni Napoleon stayed with Josephine for 3 months in August 1796.
- The fresco Lord’s Supper by Leonardo da Vinci in Milan is kept in the Church of the Renaissance Santa Maria delle Grazie.
- The Central Square of Milan is covered with pigeons, but in spite of this, a statue of king Vittorio Emanuele II set on it always remains perfectly clean. The trick is the current that goes through the monument deterring birds.
- The first skyscraper ever built in Italy is the Pirelli tower in Milan.
- Milan City Day is celebrated on December 7, the commemoration day of the Saint of the Town of Saint Ambrose of Milan.
- Milan was one of the few European cities which was not reached by the plague in the XIV century.
- In the National Museum of Science and Technology are stored all the most famous works of the great artist and inventor — Leonardo da Vinci.
- The Milan tram network is the most developed in Western Europe. We knew that Milan and St Petersburg have a lot in common.
- The trolleybus network in Milan represents a ring around the center of the city, which has branches to the suburbs.
- During the Second World War Milan was subjected to carpet bombing – raids were almost continuous, Milan was covered with a huge number of bombs.
- Milan is home to two of the strongest teams in the Italian football League clubs Inter and Milan. Milan is owned by ex Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, who is a big football fan. Both teams play at the San Siro stadium which is considered to be the largest stadium in Italy.
- In General, the tradition of the aperitif was laid precisely by the Milanese and is one of the oldest secular traditions of Italians. The aperitif is the Italian version of the Anglo-Saxon happy. Almost all Milan’s cafes and bars offer an aperitif. The traditional time of the aperitif is 19:00 – 21:00.
- Milan boasts one of the largest and most famous Opera houses in Europe. Teatro alla Scala seats over 2000 spectators. The theater is recognized as one of the leading Opera and ballet theaters in the world.
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