Spello’s Villa of the Mosaics and Horace’s love of wine
We’d love to hear some of Horace’s most famous verses – from his “Ode to a Wine Jar” – read out loud in the Hall of the Amphorae or the Hall of the Triclinium in Spello’s Villa of the Mosaics, a 500-square-meter space covered in amazing mosaic floors from the Late Imperial Age:
Your gentle persuasion draws out the dull,
Loosens the rigid, gets secrets from those
Who consider themselves to be wise.
You bring hope to the troubled and uneasy mind
And increase the horns of the poor, so they stand
Before nobles and kings, and soldiers at arms.
(“Odes” III, 21, 13-20).
Brought back to light after 2005, the Villa of the Mosaics was built in Spello between the 1st and the 3rd century AD. It includes twenty rooms, decorated with polychrome mosaics representing geometric shapes and plants, scenes from the grape harvest, wild animals, pets and imaginary figures, pagan deities, mythological characters, the Seasons… and more.
The building likely belonged to a winemaker; it was restored with exceptional care and skill, and then was delicately covered again with the same ground that protected it for centuries, with the slightest environmental impact.
Take it from Horace: a visit to the Villa of the Mosaics in Spello is a wonderfully intoxicating experience.