top of page


VILLA LYSIS, CAPRI - Amori et dolori sacrum

Article by with stunning images.

Villa Lysis was the refuge of an exile, the haven of a man escaping public shunning. Jacques d’Adelsward Fersen came to Capri in 1904, and the following year had this secluded home built in the North of the island: Villa La Gloriette, (check out the park) which later would become Villa Lysis, namesake of Socrate’s disciple.

Fersen, an eccentric poet and writer from Paris, was the subject of suspicion and ignominious accusations. He had been charged with illicit sexual acts and indecent behavior with minors, but also with officiating “black masses”. After spending six months in prison, paying a fine of fifty francs, and losing his civil rights for five years, the only thing he could do was leave the country. Capri was his final harbor.

We do not know for certain whether the imputations were well founded or not. Some believe the French artist was a victim of his accusers. It is now too late to find out for sure, and there is no time to start new inquiries and overturn his sentence.

What we do know is that Fersen’s final earthly abode is a fine example of Art Nouveau for all to see, and of this, we have no doubt.


Photos via:


More information on Villa Lysis on

The Ignazio Cerio Museum and Library - CAPRI - Overlooking the Piazzetta of Capri

The Ignazio Cerio Museum, overlooking the Square of Capri, houses fossil, mineral, prehistoric, classical archaeology finds, as well as those related to the island’s fauna and flora.

At the end of the visit, visitors are given access to the terrace of Palazzo Cerio, a perfect position for taking photographs of the island, the Gulf of Naples and the Ignazio Cerio Square (the renown Capri Piazzetta).


The over twenty thousand finds at the Centro Caprense were gathered by Ignazio Cerio during his excursions or obtained through donations or exchanges with scholars the world over in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Following the death of the center’s founder in 1921 and on request of Cerio’s son, Edwin, the collection was reorganized by naturalist Raffaello Bellini (1874-1930) and moved from the main hall (what is now the conference room) into the exhibit Halls in cabinets designed by Edwin Cerio. A plan to reorganize the archaeological, naturalistic and paleontological collections, initiated in the late 1990s, has allowed the museum to increase and regroup the collections thus focusing greater attention to those objects related to the island of Capri. In 2000, the “new” Museum, organized into four exhibit areas divided according to subject matter, was inaugurated.


The Centro Caprense Ignazio Cerio Library is specialized in the history of the island of Capri and is open to the public. It was founded in 1960 in accordance with the terms of Edwin Cerio’s will; the nucleus of the library features the bibliographical and documentary collections produced and/or collected by members of the Cerio family. Owing to his wide-ranging cultural interests, a major contribution was made by Edwin Cerio. Several other collections have also been bequeathed over the years. The library houses some 6,000 volumes, over 4,000 manuscripts and various iconographic and photographic collections.

SANTA SOFIA - “our church” as the old people call it - A building that’s more than sacred. - A place of ancient history housing treasures both big and small

Text and photos by Alessandro Scoppa


A sudden flapping of wings and the pigeons in the main piazza of Anacapri rise precipitously into the air, frightened by the children running after a ball; as they play, the new generations race around in front of the majolica-tiled benches that line the piazza, with scenes by artist Sergio Rubino depicting the ancient trades and games of the town, in an indissoluble bond between the past and the present. The old people chat about everyday events as they sit, as do the young people, although not many of them are speaking: they prefer to share their thoughts on social media. Providing the backdrop to this scene is the facade of the church of Santa Sofia, “our church”, as the old people call it.

Read more, link below.

– Axel Munthe's motto?

– Live unafraid, trust in life!


Villa San Michele on Capri in Italy is a magical place quite out of the ordinary. Some people call the villa with its garden a paradise on earth, others regard it as the pearl of the island, a place where for a moment you can step out of this world.

Axel Munthe’s former home is undoubtedly unique and a living example of a dream that came true.


Villa San Michele has won the prestigious award “Italy’s Most Beautiful Garden”.


Opening hours to the public:


"The Story of San Michele" is a best seller by Axel Munthe, it was a best-seller in numerous languages and has been republished constantly in the over seven decades since its original release.





The Casa Rossa (or Red House) in Anacapri, in the province of Naples, peaks through the memories recorded by Alberto Savinio – a master of Italian literature, although he was born in Athens, Greece – in what became the “Capri” collection, published in 1988 by Adelphi.

“Gray sky. Great clouds sweep the top of Mount Solaro. On the road that cuts through Anacapri, I look for the passage going up the mountain. Past Santa Sofia, I discover a red house, a mix of Moorish and Byzantine stiles. The inscription above the entrance welcomes me, ‘Hello, inhabitant of Apragopoli’. The emperor was right: there I was, elected honorary citizen of the city of idleness.”

“Apragopoli”, meaning “city of sweet idleness” (or ‘dolce far niente’ in Italian) was the name Suetonius gave Capri in “The Twelve Caesars”, when writing about the retirement of Emperor Augustus on the small island.

In his book, Savinio meets a man who explains that the “house belonged to a former English colonel, who wanted to turn it into a museum. That’s why the courtyard is full of potsherds, maimed statues, and sarcophagi.” Through a window on the ground floor, Savinio sees “two old women, dressed in black, still, quiet, as if they were keeping watch over a dead body. But who is the deceased? Let’s not inconvenience the secrets of a retired English colonel. Especially since his retirement is great, and eternal.”

In fact, colonel John Clay MacKowen was American, not English. The house he had built in the late 1800s is still a museum, displaying archaeological finds as well as some splendid paintings from the 19th century.

And idleness remains a beautiful surprise at the Red House in Anacapri.


Photos via:


GUARDIAN OF THE MEMORY - The Document Centre houses a valuable archive. It consists of books, photos, documents and eyewitness accounts of a past that tells the story of Capri

by Marilena D’Ambro | photos by Davide Esposito

To fall in love with Capri, and for that intense, deep-rooted feeling to develop, it takes a lifetime and a deep knowledge of the island. A knowledge that is built up over time, through the island’s history. You need to go beyond the natural beauties dotted around this island with its feminine curves, and to raise the invisible veil that envelops it. Between the walls surrounding the Piazzetta, among the medieval buildings of the old town center, echo the voices and footsteps of people who have made Capri what it is today. 

Read more: Link below:

The Lure of Capri - History, glitterati and literary icons

What is it about this tiny, sun-drenched island off the coast of Naples that has made it so irresistible for so long?  


This is a fascinating and extremely well-researched article. Concert at dawn in the Grotto of Matermania.

By Tony Perrottet




Tony says about Capri; "The magic endures".


Ivan Turgenev raved about Capri in an 1871 letter as “The entire enchanted place is a virtual temple to the goddess of Nature, the incarnation of beauty.” (Green on Capri by Shirley Hazzard)

Dancing has an Ancient History on Capri

by Antonella Maresca | photos by Raffaele Lello Mastroianni


Classical, modern or tap. Dancing has an ancient history on Capri, made up of hard work, passion and some success.

The passion for the art of dance on the island has never ceased to exist.


Article continues, click on CapriReview..



This is a fantastic and informative article on Capri, with spectacular images.


World-renowned for its brightly-colored villages clinging to hillsides, and bustling towns and islands—think Capri, Positano, Ravello—where jet-setters and tourists alike bump elbows, when you make your way to this slice of Italian paradise, you’ll find it sophisticated, elegant, yet secluded and private all at once...

A New World of Delights: Capri — Posted by Rachel Hope Cleves March 17, 2014

Highly recommended! A delightful and well-researched article about visiting Capri in the winter time, it should be read by any visitor interested in the history and culture of the island.


Here is an excerpt from the article: 

"Visiting Capri, in person and on the page, has opened a new world of delights for me as well. Not only has it led me to discover a new set of historical characters, strangers to me only a month ago, it has led me to an exciting reconceptualization of where my research may be going. For months I’ve noticed that my blog has been morphing. What began, ostensibly, as a research journal about the history of Americans learning to cook in Paris – with glimpses of my own adventures in the city’s markets and restaurants – has become increasingly colonized by observations of the intersection between culinary pleasures and erotic pleasures in the lives and writings of my research subjects – with glimpses of my own culinary adventures in between (the autobiographical part of that equation will not be expanding). Having just completed a book in the history of sexuality, I thought perhaps this overlap between sex and food was just an after-shadow, my lingering curiosity about those earlier research questions."

A Shared Passion: BOOKS

Take a book, leave a book. That’s the only rule for sharing a passion for reading on Capri too. The Little Free Library, created in the United States a few years ago, has landed on the azure isle, in Via Don Giobbe Ruocco 28, not far from the harbor.

What does it consist of? That’s simple: there’s a box installed in a wall, with lots of books inside. You open the door, take the book you want to read and leave a book you want to share. It couldn’t be simpler, and it’s all completely free.

Costanza Cerrotta got the idea after coming across the website of the organization that came up with the original idea for this new way of sharing knowledge and culture: So, after enrolling in the organization, Costanza received an identification number which enables the geolocation of the box to be added to Google Maps.

The box on Capri has already proved to be unique. There are lots of books in a range of different languages inside it, as proof that it’s not just the Capri residents or Italian tourists visiting the island who enjoy sharing the pleasure of a good book.

Please reload

bottom of page