Sunday, March 26, 2023

One of Proust's Tulips

10 May 2019

I had plunged into a network of little alleys, or calli. In the evening, with their high bell-mouthed chimneys on which the sun throws the brightest pinks, the clearest reds, it is a whole garden blossoming above the houses, its shades so various that you would have said it was the garden of some tulip lover of Delft or Haarlem, planted on top of the town.

                                         Marcel Proust, The Fugitive, p. 881 (vol V, In Search of Lost Time   

I actually think this is one of Proust's weakest descriptions of Venice, but I happened upon it the other day and it was a reason to use (finally) the image above. It's also a chimney which Henry James would certainly have noticed while lodging in the library on the highest floor of Ca' Barbaro almost directly across the Grand Canal (Ca' Barbaro consisting of the two palazzi directly to the right of the chimney's base).

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