The Allies announce the signing of an armistice with the Italian government. The anti-Nazi German consul in Florence, Gerhard Wolff, gives Nicky Mariano his assurance that “he would do all within his power to protect the collection and library of I Tatti.” Measures are taken to protect the Library and Collection: “The more valuable paintings and sculptures were taken up to Le Fontanelle or sent down to Alda [Anrep]’s apartment on the Borgo San Jacopo, where they were carefully walled up [….] The remaining paintings were spread out to hide the vacant places on the walls. As for the library, some volumes were partly walled up at I Tatti, and 20,000 volumes together with the photograph collection, were secreted at the Quarto, the great villa on the slopes of Mount Morello, near Le Fontanelle belonging to Serlupi’s mother-in-law, Baroness Kiki Ritter de Zahony” (See: Samuels II, p. 478) Bernard and Nicky go into hiding in the home of Marchese Serlupi at Villa Le Fontanelle while Mary, who is bed-ridden, stays at I Tatti.
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