The Dying Village
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The Italian village of Civita di Bagnorgeio dates back to the Bronze Age, when a tiny community developed on a narrow strip of the Bagnoregio plateau jutting out within a valley of ever changing Piliocene hills. The little settlement was active during the Iron Age. During the Etruscan period the hamlet expanded over the rest of the plateau, where the present much larger town of Bagnoregio stands. Ghibellines attacked Civita in the 14th century, but the village was defended by the Monaldeschi della Cevara and then owned by this powerful family. Over centuries wind and rain ate away at the ridge connecting Civita with Bagnoregio, resulting in Civita turning into a dying village. It’s still known as “the dying village” though today it’s kept alive by tourism, thanks to the bridge built in 1965.
Very few people live in Civita. Many of the buildings there are beautifully renovated. Some include shops and restaurants and others are vacation homes rented out. No cars and trucks are allowed in the village. Visitors can only reach it on foot. This shot gives a better feel of just how steep the bridge is. At the steepest point the bridge joins winding stone steps. Within the impressive gate to the village there sits a long and smooth stone bench. My friend Julie and I gratefully sat there and listened to a violinist as he greeted and played for all who entered the town.
During the post processing on this image, I was attracted to effects that highlighted the dramatic look of this village and hinted at its rich history; also to layers suggesting an old postcard that never reached its destination.
Also by Deborah Downes
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