Puccini’s comment in regard to the plaque that once commemorated the place where the composer Boccherini resided in Via della Dogana

Eleven Unusual Things to See in Lucca

On the wall of the hotel, Albergo San Martino in Via della Dogana, 9, a plaque has been placed, once again, to remember where Luigi Boccherini, renowned composer of Lucca known for his famous Minuet in A, had lived for a few years of his life.  During the Fascist period, the plaque had been removed because it was considered unseemly given that the building had since become a famous house of ill repute. In fact, Giacomo Puccini, who considered Boccherini to be the most famous composer of Lucca, wrote to his sister Ramelde on 6 March 1901, commenting in proverbial Tuscan irony: “…and to think that Boccherini only has a plaque on the wall of a brothel!”

Today, this comment can be read on a small commemorative plaque found just outside the entrance to the hotel.

The original was not found so this was put in its place.  However, the hotel isn’t easy to find because it’s on a narrow and winding alley in back of the theatre, Teatro del Giglio.But this saucy tidbit shouldn’t be missed!


Other articles of the series  Eleven Unusual Things to See in Lucca

The Last Supper by Tintoretto in the Cathedral of San Martino
The exterior graffiti on the Church of San Michele
A curious story regarding the tomb of the merchant Tignosini
The replica of the Holy House of Our Lady of Loreto in the Church of Santa Maria Nera
The stone known as the “Devil’s Stone” of Palazzo Bernardini



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