July 11, 2014

Bringing history alive at a storied Tuscany estate

Iris Origo was a 22-year-old newlywed Anglo-American heiress — as rich, brilliant and innocent as a Henry James heroine — when she and her husband, an Italian nobleman, decided to buy La Foce. “Treeless and shrubless but for some tufts of broom,” Origo wrote in October 1923 of her first view of the rundown 3,500-acre estate southeast of Siena; it was “a lunar landscape, pale and inhuman.”

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