But, in the Casentino and especially in Poppi, Ella and Dora didn’t find what they had envisaged, but much more. An infinitely beautiful valley, dotted everywhere with age-old churches, monasteries and abbeys sealing the spirituality of a singular place. But above all else, our two “expats” met the people, simple and illiterate, as well as proud and self-respectful; passionate, crude and diffident, but generous and sometimes even affectionate.
The food, the light, the sun of Tuscany did the rest… In a nutshell, Ella and Dora had met human warmth. Something that their upbringing had never managed to give them.
After their life-changing experience, upon their return to England, in 1905, Ella and Dora Noyes published a sumptuous book that would become famous, The Casentino and its Story, a veritable art and spiritual guide, of priceless beauty, about Poppi and the upper Arno Valley.