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Now begins that deadest time of the year for Italy, sizzling doldrums when the Eternal City belongs to tourists and those few Romans unable to contrive summer escape. And next Thursday, a de facto shutdown of government and business becomes official, with a midsummer national holiday that will also--unofficially but universally--consume next Friday, and the next weekend, and as much beyond as schedule and conscience permits. In a country on vacation, people confer about the heat and the beach.
June 1, 2008 | Susan Spano
I seldom see people on bicycles in Rome, probably because of the traffic and uneven pavement. Then, too, the Eternal City is full of hills, seven of which are famous. -- Susan Spano Aventine Many Rome aficionados know this hill south of the Forum because of the moderately priced Hotel Aventino,, and its nearby sister hotels, the San Anselmo and the San Pio.
July 28, 2005 | From Times Wire Reports
A rumor that terrorists had contaminated Rome's water supply spread through the Italian capital and prompted Mayor Walter Veltroni to call for calm. A mass circulation cellphone text message warned people not to drink the water, sparking a flood of calls to police and hospitals. Prosecutors opened an investigation into the source.
January 17, 2008 | From the Associated Press
Hundreds of thousands of brightly colored balls went cascading down Rome's famed Spanish Steps on Wednesday in the latest stunt orchestrated by the man who dyed the waters of the Trevi Fountain red. TV cameras caught organizer Graziano Cecchini and several others emptying bags of red, green, yellow and blue balls down the 18th century steps. The balls bounced down the steps, filling the boat-shaped Barcaccia fountain in the piazza below in a spectacle that stunned passersby, who snapped photos and scooped up the balls as souvenirs.
August 20, 2000 | From Associated Press
As many as 2 million candle-waving Roman Catholic pilgrims lighted up the hills outside Rome on Saturday in a spirited World Youth Day with Pope John Paul II. A helicopter ferried in the 80-year-old pontiff as the sun set, cooling a day that had reached 100 degrees--baking the crowds blanketing a 15-acre university campus. The pope smiled broadly as young people supported each of his arms while he shuffled slowly to his popemobile, which drove him to center stage for the evening vigil.
March 23, 2004 | Randy Lewis
Quincy Jones is hoping to draw about 1 million people and a global television audience with an all-star concert May 16 in Rome aimed at easing the suffering of children in violence-racked parts of the world. Among the participants confirmed for "We Are the Future," which echoes the title of the "We Are the World" all-star charity single Jones produced in 1985, are Norah Jones, Jay-Z, Sting, Oprah Winfrey, Muhammad Ali, LL Cool J, Josh Groban and the casts of "Stomp" and Cirque du Soleil.
January 27, 2006 | From Reuters
Rome's mayor unveiled plans for his ambitious new international film festival on Thursday, playing down what many see as an inevitable rivalry with the Venice competition. "We want the two to grow together," Walter Veltroni, a movie buff who hails from the biggest party in Italy's center-left opposition, told a packed news conference. "This is a different creature," he said, describing the Oct.
March 18, 1989 | From Reuters
Police Friday found a bomb in a bathroom of Rome's main courthouse following an anonymous call to a newspaper. Police evacuated the building, where most of the capital's civil and criminal cases are heard and many investigating magistrates have offices.
April 13, 1992 | From The Times Washington staff
NEW SITE: Arab-Israeli peace talks may move from Washington to Rome after this month's round of negotiations. . . . Secretary of State James A. Baker III has promised Israel that the sessions will move closer to the Middle East--but aides say a European capital is probably as close as the Arab countries will accept. Brussels and Geneva are also under consideration, but Italian officials have been told to begin scouting for potential sites in Rome.
The Eternal City, which according to legend was founded almost 3,000 years ago by a man who had been suckled by a wolf, has entered the 1990s in pursuit of a mysterious black panther. Eight times since Christmas, the panther has been sighted on the fringes of a city where big cats have not been seen much since the lions ate Christians in the Colosseum.
January 16, 2008 | Tracy Wilkinson, Times Staff Writer
It's a big deal when the pope agrees to speak at an event that isn't church-related. It's an even bigger deal when public protest forces him to cancel. Veteran Vatican-watchers said they'd never seen anything quite like it. Pope Benedict XVI on Tuesday abruptly called off plans to speak at Rome's prestigious La Sapienza university, after students and professors rallied to proclaim him pontiff non grata.
August 19, 2007 | From Times Wire Services
Tourists can now buy tickets to the Colosseum on the Internet and avoid long lines at the ancient Roman arena, officials said. The online booking system allows visitors to pick a spot on a guided tour in their preferred language, giving them access to the 1st century arena and its temporary exhibitions as well as the nearby Palatine Hill, where Rome's emperors lived in luxury. Each year 4 million people pay to visit the Colosseum and the Palatine.
June 10, 2007 | Tracy Wilkinson and James Gerstenzang, Times Staff Writers
With Italians converging on Rome to decry the war in Iraq, President Bush received a more subtle but pointed message Saturday about America's Middle East policy in his first meeting with Pope Benedict XVI. Benedict urged the president to pursue a "regional and negotiated" solution to the violence engulfing the Middle East, a Vatican statement said, and voiced alarm about "the worrying situation in Iraq" and the plight of the besieged and dwindling community of Christians there.
May 5, 2007 | From the Associated Press
A bronze horse, possibly the work of the Parthenon sculptor, went on display Friday at a Rome museum after a decades-long restoration. The horse was returned to the Capitoline Museums after a $680,000 restoration that began in the late 1970s, museum director Anna Mura Sommella said.
April 9, 2007 | Tracy Wilkinson, Times Staff Writer
An unusual Easter Parade made its way through the streets of Rome and into St. Peter's Square on Sunday. Some of the participants wore ropes tied into nooses around their necks. One 21-year-old, Daniele de Luca, carried pieces of a homemade gallows. To protest the death penalty, and war in general, they chose Easter, the day Christians celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. After all, they said, Jesus was the perfect pacifist who fell victim to a regime-sanctioned execution.
April 26, 2006 | From the Associated Press
Italy's Interior Ministry said Tuesday it would remove a poster promoting "The Da Vinci Code" movie from the scaffolding of a Rome church undergoing renovation after its clergymen complained. The enormous poster, featuring a picture of Da Vinci's "Mona Lisa" and the title of the upcoming film, has been plastered for a few weeks on the scaffolded facade of the church of St. Pantaleo, which is just off a major thoroughfare in Rome's historic center.
February 13, 2006 | Lynne Heffley
Pompeii wasn't the only town to be interred in the ashes of Italy's Mt. Vesuvius. The volcanic eruption of AD 79 buried an entire region, including the luxury resort of Stabiae, an ancient high-rent district where rich and powerful Romans escaped the summer heat in lavish seaside villas. Excavations of the area (present-day Castellammare di Stabia) have taken place off and on from the 18th century to the present day.
January 25, 2007 | From the Associated Press
ITALIAN police have unearthed the hidden cache of a group of grave robbers, recovering ancient Roman marble reliefs depicting stunningly lifelike gladiators locked in mortal combat, officials said Wednesday. The 12 panels were buried in the garden of a home near Fiano Romano, 25 miles north of Rome. Officials hailed it as a major archeological find and a blow to the illegal antiquities market. Archeologists said the work offers a glimpse into early gladiator fights.
June 5, 2006 | Tracy Wilkinson, Times Staff Writer
Denise Sofia, in black spandex sweats, trotted across the busy 20th of September Street and neared the end of her morning jog. Her run had taken her through St. Peter's Square, along the Tiber River, around the ancient Roman ruins of the Forum and Colosseum. Sofia doubles as a personal trainer and guide in a new fad in the gigantic tourism trade that floods Italy with millions of visitors every year: "sight-jogging." Tourists check out the sights as they run past.
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