Want to buy the villa that inspired the author of Pinocchio? It will set you back £8.7million.
The Villa di Colonnata, in a suburb of Florence called Sesto Fiorentino, is a world away from the humble workshop where the carpenter Geppetto's marionette is born in the book by Carlo Collodi. The 3,000-square-metre (32,000 square feet) mansion has seven acres of garden, including a lawn known as the 'Field of Miracles', where a gardener famously found a hoard of coins in the 19th century – a tale that was included in 'The Adventures of Pinocchio'. The Field of Miracles appears in Pinocchio as the place where a sly fox and cat persuade the gullible Pinocchio to bury his money, telling him that it will grow and multiply.
Collodi lived near the villa, where his brother worked at a local porcelain manufacturing plant, and several other local sites also feature in his tale.
Giuseppe Garbarino, a local historian who is writing a book about Pinocchio, told AFP that currently only school groups and a few diehard Pinocchio fans come to visit "the centre of where Pinocchio was conceived," which is owned by the Gerini family, adding "it would be nice if the new owner was a Pinocchio fan!"
Pinocchio, the enduring tale about the wooden puppet boy with an in-built lie detector for a nose, was written in instalments in a children's journal between 1881 and 1883. A production of Pinocchio will be on atThe Watermill Theatre in Newbury this Christmas season.