on the way to siena

“ You wish to… marry me?” She was not sure she had understood him properly. He had not posed it as a question, rather as a fact. But perhaps that was the Siena way.

“Nothing else will do,” he groaned. “I must have you, completely, at my table and in my bed, or I shall waste away like a starving prisoner. There you have it; forgive the lack of poesy.”

Juliet, 2010.

anonymous asked:

I'm going to the countryside near siena :))) tell me something i should do ?

uuhuhhuh idk really. but if you visit Siena you should definitely read online (here i googled it for u) about the “Palio di Siena”. This way when you visit Siena you should choose what team to stand for and maybe buy their flag. it’s cute.

newfavething  asked:

I know you're a big fan of St. Catherine of Alexandria (me too!!) and I loved what you wrote about her; thank you! How do you feel about St. Catherine of Siena?

So I don’t connect with Catherine of Siena on a personal level, the way I do with Catherine of Alexandria—but she’s definitely one of the most intriguing saints out there.

I mean, she was profoundly influential on the medieval church, not just because she accessed power that wasn’t afforded to medieval women, but because she accessed it in ways that men at the time couldn’t. Like, a mystical marriage to Jesus sounds weird as shit now, but that is an exclusively feminine way to lay claim to the divine, to have authority on the divine; the fact that she maintained ties with kings and dukes and almost every religious figure at the time (including the pope, whom she got to call special nicknames because she was just that good) through correspondence, instead of more official channels…She leveraged her religious powerhouse status to be a political powerhouse, and advocated for the reform of the clergy and the Italian states, which was the hot-button issue of the day. It was a uniquely medieval and a uniquely feminine way of getting at power, to move through theological channels with an eye to the political.

IT’S REALLY FUCKING COOL OKAY

I mean, it was unheard of for an unmarried woman who wasn’t nobility to travel around the Italian states, defending political prisoners and advising the pope, having opinions, and generally being stubborn as fuck (people were always like “Catherine, stop fasting! Catherine, stop giving to the poor! Catherine, you can’t be a nun!” and her response was “FUCK YOU I’M MARRIED TO JESUS”)

Also, the fact that no one has written a historical fiction novel about Catherine of Siena and her correspondence with notorious assassin John Hawkwood is personally offensive to me.