City tour at...Tiber Island - Trastevere
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Was it the residue of a deposit of wheat and grain owned by the tyrant Tarquinius Superbus or was it the point where Aesculapius’ snake jumped out of the boat that was taking him from Epidauros to Rome? We avail ourselves of the faculty of not telling you what were the origins of the Tiber Island, but we can take you to discover this little island in the midst of the Tiber, which is a bit of a boat and a bit of a hospital. Who would not like to travel through time and through the history of medicine?
Lenght: 2 hours;
Warnings: The tour includes a visit to a church and to hospital premises; therefore you are kindly asked to speak in a soft voice, in order not to bother sick people, and to behave properly. We recommend to wear comfortable shoes and clothes that are suitable to the weather.
The Tiber Island is 300 metres long and only 90 metres large and it stands in the middle of the Tiber River, between the Trastevere district and the Ghetto. There are many legends about its origins: one says that it originated from the sheaves of wheat and grain belonging to the Tarquinii family and thrown by angry Romans into the river as a demonstration of their hatred.According to another version, the island stands in the very point where one of Aesculapius’ sacred snakes jumped into the river, while being transported from Epidaurus to Rome, where people suffered from plague and illnesses. This last legend is also the closest to the truth, since upon the island there really was a sacred temple dedicated to Aesculapius (and this will mark the destiny of the island itself, as a place for healing sick people) on the ruins of which the church of San Bartolomeo all’Isola (Church of St. Bartholomew upon the Island) would then be built, which is now part of the Fatebenefratelli Hospital.