John K Leonard
jleonard at uwo.ca
Wed Feb 20 12:52:09 EST 2013
My vivid recollection of that 1988 conference is that the evergreens extended all the way from the valley bottom up to the Paradisino--the lodge where Milton supposedly stayed. A few of us slept in that Spartan accommodation (no plumbing) and the conifers were both noticed and commented on. Your explanation--that the landscape may have changed since Milton's time--was also mentioned and I have since seen it in print, but cannot recall where.
On 02/20/13, "Mario A. DiCesare" <dicesare1 at mindspring.com> wrote:
> Dear Friends,
> I came across an odd notation recently declaring that Milton misrepresented Vallombrosa in the famous line from PL I, "Thick as autumnal leaves that strow the brooks / Of Vallombrosa." The writer claimed that the line proves Milton was never at Vallombrosa; there are only evergreens at present day Vallombrosa. But as our local arborist pointed out to me when I quoted the line, evergreens will gradually displace deciduous trees and even take over a forest. I don't recall how dominant evergreens were when the great international Milton bash took place in the late 1980s, bringing Miltonists from all over to Vallombrosa and Florence. Had the evergreens completely displaced the deciduous trees on those mountains?
> Mario DiCesare
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