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An ancient city brought to life with obscure, fun, and fascinating places, exhibits, puzzles and gems hidden throughout Rome.

Book Review: ‘Secret Rome’ by Jonglez Publishing

The splendor of touring Rome includes massive architecture, impressive ruins, and thriving Italian culture. Yet, Jonglez Publishing’s guidebook, Secret Rome, will take you beyond the common wonders, to a thorough understanding of Rome’s complexity, and point out the quirky and unusual details overlooked by most visitors, and by other guidebooks.

Secret Rome covers the city center, of course, along with the Vatican, which is full of secrets and surprises, and also invites you to explore curious areas in five more areas beyond the city.

As with all Jonglez Publishing guides, each section has a detailed full-color map, as well as pages and pages of ideas to enjoy. Without such a guide, you’d likely walk right past fascinating frescoes at the Trinita dei Monti convent. There on the upper floor you’ll find a corridor featuring rare anamorphic paintings. The principle of the anamorphic perspective is to project the line of vision that creates an illusion you have to see to believe. The convent has another treat in store: a catoptrics sundial. Created by a priest who held a strong interest in optics, math, and gnomonics (the art of building sundials), it is another astonishing find no traveler to Rome should miss.

Secret Rome is divided by city sections, to ensure the reader won’t miss seeing an unusual cemetery, or other treasures, such as the gorgeous Berardi water clock. This lovely, ingenious hydrochronometer is in the courtyard of Palazzo Berardi in the La Pigna district and is worth a visit.

Beyond the marvels of art and architecture, you’ll find fun for the whole family in Secret Rome. Travelers with curious children will likely enjoy the National Museum of the History of Medicine, where skeletons and mummies are on display along with primitive medical tools: creepy old drills, saws, an ancient pharmacy, and a 17th century laboratory. This is a terrific book for the armchair traveler, and trivia buff, as well as those desiring to see the real secrets of Rome.

[amazon template=iframe image&asin=978-2361950422]

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