Gian Francesco Gamurrini’s Autobiografia – written at the age of 86 – traces key moments in an entire life dedicated to archaeology and to protecting the cultural heritage of the Arezzo area from plundering by speculators and art dealers, especially after the suppression of ecclesiastical bodies. This was a threat to be avoided at all costs, since the French occupation had resulted in the dispersal of part of the art treasures on the international market.
Giamarrini’s work as a librarian was carried out with the same civic passion as his archaeological activities and his defence of cultural heritage as conducive to the growth of a national consciousness.
These pages describing his travels in Italy to document its epigraphic evidence, are on a par with Goethe’s Italian Journey, not so much for the description of landscapes and monuments, as for the wondrous attention – typical of 18th-19th century peripatetic literature – to the people he encountered, which brings them alive and allows us a glimpse of life at the time. The volume is enriched by the essays of Sara Faralli, Gulio Firpo, Andrea Gaucci, Giulio Paolucci.