Sunday, October 10, 2004

A lesser-known sight...

I trust that a post-retreat glow is evident... Anyway, before I went on retreat, I spent an enjoyable few hours about the city with Lauren of the Cntyr 'blog (who double-'blogs) and re-encountered one of those curiosites that one learns about as a resident of a city, but which don't make it into the guide-books. Coming down from Santa Sabina we passed an iron gateway leading into a private house. (Anyone wishing to locate it will find it on the Via S.Anselmo, about a third of the way up, on one's right as one ascends the Aventine.) The gateway is decorated with a crest and an inscription in Latin. The house itself is said to have been the home of an excommunicate priest who refused to recant various modernist propositions early in the last century. Deprived of his living (as the Anglicans might put it...) he withdrew to his home on the Aventine and as his parting shot to the world (and the Supreme Gatekeeper's successor) he erected this gate bearing his coat of arms and the motto 'Sine spe, sine metu - 'Without hope, without fear.'

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