The famous Renaissance artist known as Botticelli was born in Florence when his mother was 40 years old. He was nicknamed Botticelli which means “little barrels” by his family. A special fondness for his mother must have inspired him to create many of the paintings of women and mothers for which he is well known. In Botticelli’s eyes, women are filled with grace, beauty and strength.
In the Uffizi Gallery in Florence hang two of Botticelli’s best known works of art, Primavera and the Birth of Venus. Both remind me of the exceptional role women have in Italy. In a culture surrounded by art and beauty, women are valued as a natural resource. The historical influence of women on Italian society and family values goes back to the ancient Etruscans where women were described as dignified, charming and free, caring for their families with great attention. Cultivating and preparing wholesome foods, Etruscan families enjoyed a well laid table and that heritage can still be seen on the tables of Italy today.
The maternal muses of Italy are a significant part of Italian culture and living where Mothers are still the center of the universe and Italian children and husbands happily orbit around them enjoying the attention and unconditional love of la mamma.