The other pictures here are two sunny panels by Ridolfo Ghirlandaio, high up, with nice easy colouring; No. 92, an Adoration of the Shepherds by Lorenzo di Credi, with a good landscape and all very sweet and quiet; No. 98, a Deposition by Filippino Lippi and Perugino, in collaboration, with very few signs of Filippino; and No. 90, a Resurrection by Raffaellino del Garbo, an uncommon painter in Florence; the whole thing a tour de force, but not important.
And now let us look at the Angelicos again.
Before leaving the Accademia for the last time, one should glance at the tapestries near the main entrance, just for fun. That one in which Adam names the animals is so delightfully naive that it ought to be reproduced as a nursery wall-paper. The creatures pass in review in four processions, and Adam must have had to be uncommonly quick to make up his mind first and then rattle out their resultant names in the time. The main procession is that of the larger quadrupeds, headed by the unicorn in single glory; and the moment chosen by the artist is that in which the elephant, having just heard his name (for the first time) and not altogether liking it, is turning towards Adam in surprised remonstrance. The second procession is of reptiles, led by the snail; the third, the smaller quadrupeds, led by four rats, followed desperately close (but of course under the white flag) by two cats; while the fourth—all sorts and conditions of birds—streams through the air. The others in this series are all delightful, not the least being that in which God, having finished His work, takes Adam’s arm and flies with him over the earth to point out its merits.
Two Monasteries and a Procession
The Certosa—A Company of Uncles—The Cells—Machiavelli—Impruneta—The della Robbias—Pontassieve—Pelago—Milton’s simile—Vallombrosa—S. Gualberto—Prato and the Lippis—The Grassina Albergo—An American invasion—The Procession of the Dead Christ—My loss.
Everyone who merely visits Florence holds it a duty to bring home at least one flask of the Val d’Ema liqueur from the Carthusian monastery four or five miles distant from the city, not because that fiery distillation is peculiarly attractive but because the vessels which contain it are at once pretty decorations and evidences of travel and culture. They can be bought in Florence itself, it is true (at a shop at the corner of the Via de’ Cerretani, close to the Baptistery), but the Certosa is far too interesting to miss, if one has time to spare from the city’s own treasures. The trams start from the Mercato Nuovo and come along the Via dell’ Arcivescovado to the Baptistery, and so to the Porta Romana and out into the hilly country. The ride is dull and rather tiresome, for there is much waiting at sidings, but the expedition becomes attractive immediately the tram is left. There is then a short walk, principally up the long narrow approach to the monastery gates, outside which, when I was there, was sitting a beggar at a stone table, waiting for the bowl of soup to which all who ask are entitled.