Dec 7, 2011 0
Was in turin for the past two days — giving a talk at the Collegio Carlo Alberto yesterday, a very nice spot. Today I had a few hours to look around before taking the train back down to rome; I’m using wifi on the train to do this post! Unfortunately I did not have time to peruse any of the following, although I was quite curious:
- “Widespread” Museum of the Resistance
- Museum of Human Anatomy and Fruit Museum
- The International Museum of Applied Art Today
Instead I went to the egypt museum, which claims to be the oldest such in the world (founded in 1824 with donations from the consul that Napoleon left on his trip there). I’m not a devoted fan of egyptology the way that some people are, but I have to say it was pretty impressive. Real mummies are cool however you slice them (pictures to follow?). Anyway, I think we all know the famous quote from Jean-François Champollion (who deciphered hieroglyphics): “The road to memphis and thebes passes through turin.” Right?
Then I went to the National Museum of the Mountain, which has some dioramas, a bunch of old skis, and some pieces of original mountaineering equipment used by Bonatti and Messner (on different occasions, of course). Those were pretty neat, but I think my favorite part is that it is housed in one wing of a capuchin convent… on top of a hill. That’s right: you have to walk up a rather steep (if short) path to get to the mountain museum. Apparently the italian alpine club was started in turin in the 19th century, so perhaps Champollion should have said: “The road to K2 and the matterhorn passes through turin.”