When I finally managed to find a place to liven in Rome, it was in a villa above Trastevere.

Trastevere is rione XIII of Rome, on the west bank of the Tiber, south of Vatican City. Its name comes from the Latin trans Tiberim, meaning literally “beyond the Tiber”

My place was not quite in the centre of Trastevere, but instead high up on the hill above Trastevere, in Monteverde Vecchio, adjacent to an area known as il Gianicolo that affords stunning views of the city of Rome.

The Janiculum (il Gianicolo in Italian) is a hill in western Rome, Italy. Although the second-tallest hill (the tallest being Monte Mario) in the contemporary city of Rome, the Janiculum does not figure among the proverbial Seven Hills of Rome, being west of the Tiber and outside the boundaries of the ancient city.

Trastevere maintains its character thanks to its narrow cobbled streets lined by medieval houses. At night, both natives and tourists alike flock to its many pubs and restaurants. However, much of the original character of Trastevere remains.

The area is also home to John Cabot University, a private American University, the American Academy in Rome, and the Rome campus of the Thomas More College of Liberal Arts, the Canadian University of Waterloo School of Architecture (between the months of September and December), and the American Pratt Institute School of Architecture therefore serving as home to an international student body.

The unique character of this neighborhood has attracted artists, foreign expats, and many famous people. In the sixties and seventies, the American musicians/composers Frederic Rzewski and Richard Teitelbaum, of the group Musica Elettronica Viva, lived in Via della Luce. Sergio Leone, the director of Spaghetti Westerns, grew up in Viale Glorioso (there is a marble plaque to his memory on the wall of the apartment building), and went to a Catholic private school in the neighborhood. Ennio Morricone, the film music composer, went to the same school, and for one year was in the same class as Sergio Leone.

Piazza di Santa Maria in Trastevere

Fiume Tevere (Tiber River)

 

Very funny buskers in Piazza di Santa Maria in Trastevere

The villa I lived in, on a hill above Trastevere.