The line of perfumes “Ferratese” is a tribute to the triumph of colours and scents of the Roman Castles, which have always seen tourists from all over the world enchanted, with their gaze absorbed between the villas, lakes, woods and scents of these lands. Contributing factor is a recently read book found in the Abbey library of Grottaferrata. A book that despite its 400 years of age has kept unchanged its captivating charm and it shows the reader a landscape full of unique places with an extraordinary beauty and magical atmospheres.
It is said, in fact, that around the end of 1500, the Cardinal Giuliano della Rovere, at that time Commendatory abbot, ordered the construction of the residential buildings inside the Grottaferrata Abbey. These would be used to give rest to visiting nobles and knights.
The apartments overlooked the entrance courtyard, and today as at that time, it was decorated with citrus plants, palms, jasmines and cyclamens of all colours, arranged with artful precision by the masters gardeners, skilfully guided from Giuliano da Sangallo, architect of the nobles of that time, so that “the guest” would be indelibly impressed by the colours and scents that the garden released.
It is told, in fact, that “having made the palace completely available to the invited nobles coming from everywhere to celebrate the marriage of his eldest son, Count Farnese asked Cardinal della Rovere to host some of those who, in deference, could not stay in the servants’ apartments. In view of the generous offer to continue the renovation works for the fortification of the Abbey, the Cardinal agreed to host the “friends” that the Count Farnese had sent to his palace.”
The story goes on to say that, “among the prestigious guests who arrived at the Abbey’s residences, there was also a family that, in order to be presented in the Roman nobility’s palaces, had also brought their eldest daughter: a beautiful blue-eyed girl with platinum blonde hair.”
It seems that on the morning of their departure, “as soon as they left the main door of the Abbey, the coachman of the carriage with which the family was travelling, did not know exactly the way to arrive at the Via Francigena. So, as a knight approached on his steed, the coachman stopped the carriage unexpectedly. The stop was so sudden and abrupt that the occupants opened the curtains to understand the reason of this interruption. Although the father wanted a less impulsive behaviour, the young woman, was the first to look out the window to understand what was happening.
The knight, got off from his horse, and immediately noticed the beauty of the young girl. The coachman asked loudly for the directions and the knight, addressing to the young girl, explained the way. They looked at each other intensely, magically, and she smiled at him. The father noticed this, and he did the only thing that the two wouldn’t want him to do: to break that enchantment. The parent, in fact, put his head out from the opposite window and addressing to the coachman, he gave, almost screaming, the directions just given to his daughter. So the knight, picked a flower from the flowerbed next to the entrance of the Abbey and he gave it to the girl, he greeted her smiling and wishing her a good journey. The carriage went away with the maiden who, with the eyes vibrant of passion, shouted “I’ll be back”. He saw her moving away with the flower thorough her fingers while she was smelling its scent.”
The story ends with the knight who, having heard the cardinal’s need to provide the Abbey with a guard house to prevent any plundering that, during the period of conflicts for the papal powers, had seen important works of art and precious decorations destroyed and stolen, he decided to stay as commander of the guards with the hope of seeing the girl again.”
And it is in the effects of this story that the idea of paying homage to the beauty of the Roman Castles has taken shape with a line of perfumes that, today as yesterday, contains the olfactory sensations of natural scents and aromas, giving them a unique expression of emotions that leaves in each of us the eternal evidence of a magical moment.