Graziella Magherini, psychiatrist, observed and described over 100 Stendhal Syndrome cases among tourists and visitors in Florence, the birthplace of the Renaissance, and wrote about it in 1979.

The “syndrome”‘s name (still awaiting confirmation of being some kind of real pathology, based on empirical evidences) comes from the fact of being Stendhal who referred to it in detail, being struck himself by the beauty of art in Florence in 1817.

Because of work, I travel across Tuscany, and we take a stop in Florence, and the journey makes me fully understand and feel for myself the existence of the syndrome.

Beauty awakens us. We awake to the shock from velvet and nectar, from brilliance and excellence. Art, architecture and landscapes are braided and are to move the visitor. And I realise that this is not the first time that it happens to me. But in this fourth journey through these parts of northern Italy, perhaps because of age, I feel that my sensitivity pores are more open than ever before, and I live with intense emotion these gifts offered by this land. Sometimes we need to stop to take pictures of the landscape, its mists at dawn and dusk, its cypress trees that dot the roads, the extraordinary beauty that seems to inhale fresh air in the soul.

Life would be impossible without the beauty that it gives us as a present. In specific doses, it shakes the soul to the point that even the body shows it.

Hugs and kisses,


Alex Rovira