The Borgo di Capodimonte, the humble neighbor of the King

by Federico Quagliuolo

Capodimonte was once on the edge of the city, one of the villages that existed before Naples became a metropolis. If someone had asked a Neapolitan of the '700 where is the "Borgo of Capodimonte“, Probably, few would have been able to answer.

Nothing strange: before the construction of the Palace, here there were about ten houses that were concentrated around one church of 1500, built to give comfort to the few peasants who gathered in the square of a village that today we would not even know, if the French fashion of the rulers had not saved it.

Capodimonte in fact seemed destined to remain an anonymous farmhouse outside Naples, until Re Charles of Bourbon he did not build a gigantic residence with a hunting lodge, which several years later would become the Woods.
The King also decided to establish one of the most famous porcelain factories in the world on site, bringing the small village to house the best artisans of the Kingdom.
The idea of owning one "holiday home" close to the city was, in fact, a fashion born in Paris in the 1700s that Naples immediately adopted, as happened with all French fashions weather.

And, if Paris could not enjoy views so beautiful as to seem paintings, Naples with Capodimonte gave himself one of the "Holiday villages" most beautiful in the whole world: to remain close to the King, almost all the noble families had dozens of villas built along all the Aminei Hills, many of which still exist.

And so the Capodimonte Village became a foreigner in its own home: in the comings and goings of the carriages of the Bourbons, Napoleon, Savoy and all the nobles, the Borgo remained a small jumble of houses around a church, still populated by humble land workers and artisans who did not figure well near the magnificent rulers who passed through those country roads.

Not even the building speculation was able to completely destroy the Borgo: the land was so bumpy and inaccessible that the construction of buildings on the Scudillo grounds was preferred, as well as completely devastating the nearby villages of Marianella and San Rocco, who instead had a bad luck. The only real pouring of concrete was with the construction of the Rione Lieti, to the right of the ancient village.

A bit like Two Doors Village, the village of Capodimonte he survived and still tells his ancient and humble story.

-Federico Quagliuolo

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