10: AM CDT

In the palatial headquarters of The Fleming Foundation, Founder and President Thomas Fleming, surrounded by popping flashbulbs and rolling movie cameras, made an official announcement that brought joy to the literally dozens of friends and readers who follow the work of the Foundation. (They actually number in the hundreds, but dozens sounds more poetic.)

I am happy to report that we have struck an agreement with the beautiful Grand Hotel del Gianicolo to arrange TFF’s first convivial meeting in Italy: A one week meeting in Rome to explore “the grandeur that was Rome,” specifically, the height of the Empire from Vespasian to Marcus Aurelius.  This was, according to Gibbon, the happiest age of the world in which to live, and the monuments of literature, architecture, and art in Rome itself tend to back up Gibbon’s glowing sentences.

Fleming added a few personal words that brought tears to the eyes of many in the vast audience that filled the manicured acres of landscaped grounds:

Last Fall we were planning a trip to Northern Greece, but it had to be cancelled because of an injury to my wife’s ankle.  Now, at last, we are ready to start on this new chapter of our Foundation’s activities.

Those who have attended on my Winter programs in Rome, may remember the lovely location of the hotel,  high up on the Gianiculan Hill, a short walk from the nightlife and shopping of Trastevere but out of the heat and crowds.  This four star hotel, after a few years of bad management when it fell into the hands of the Calabrian crime lords, is under new ownership and management.  Remember lunches on the patio beside the pool?  Simple dinners at Il Focolare or blow-out feasts at Il Cortile?  Or best of all, home-style dining with our friends at Da Fabrizio?

There was not a dry eye in the place, when the spry old fellow went on to describe the add-on trip to Umbria being planned.

We’ll be based in Perugia, one of the loveliest smaller cities in central Italy, and we have excursions planned to Assisi, Gubbio, Todi and other Umrbian jewels.  We’ll trace the careers of the great painters, Perugino and Pinturicchio, and end up, as the place for departure, in historic and beautiful Arezzo, home to the magnificent frescos of Paolo di Francesco.  Naturally, many participants will wish to spend a few extra days in Arezzo or take the train ride into Florence before going back to Rome.

The Foundation’s huge staff is arranging everything and will help participants make travel arrangements, extra days, and suggest additional visits and readings.

The program is scheduled to begin after lunch on October 8.  Prices will be announced shortly,  but they will be within the range of previous programs in Italy.  People interested in attending should write as soon as possible to be put on the mailing list for information.  At this point, The Foundation has planned on a limited number of rooms, but an early enthusiastic response will permit us to secure additional space.

Contact the Foundation at :  Contact

Or if you have the President's email, send directly to him.

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Thomas Fleming

Thomas Fleming is president of the Fleming Foundation. He is the author of six books, including The Morality of Everyday Life and The Politics of Human Nature, as well as many articles and columns for newspapers, magazines,and learned journals. He holds a Ph.D. in Classics from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill and a B.A. in Greek from the College of Charleston. He served as editor of Chronicles: a Magazine of American Culture from 1984 to 2015 and president of The Rockford Institute from 1997-2014. In a previous life he taught classics at several colleges and served as a school headmaster in South Carolina