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Home > Mezzofanti > Biography > 1803 to 1806 > Parma
In the autumn of the same year the Abate Mezzofanti paid his long-intended visit to Parma and De Rossi. The Italians, and especially the literary men of Italy, are proverbially bad travellers. Maglia-becchi never was outside of the gates of Florence in his life, except on two occasions;—once as far as Fiesole, which may almost be called a suburb of the city, and once again to a distance of ten miles. Many an Italian Professor has passed an entire life without any longer excursion than the daily walk from his lodgings to the lecture-room. Even the great geographer, D'Anville, who lived to the age of eighty-five, is said never to have left his native city, Paris ; Note 1 and yet he was able to point out many errors in the plan of the Troad made upon the spot by the Comte de Choiseul. It has been frequently alleged of Mezzo¬fanti, also, as enhancing still more the marvel of his acquirements in languages, that, until his fortieth year, he had never quitted his native city. That this statement -is not literally true appears from a letter which he wrote to the Abate de Rossi, on his return to Bologna, after the visit to which I have alluded.
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