We have quoted Manzoni more than once in this guide. The reason behind this is that he has described Milan in his masterpiece I Promessi Sposi in a way every Italian remembers: we have studied it during high school and our teachers have repeated to us millions of times that we had to keep in mind his words because, sooner or later, we would have passed by one of the places described and his words would have come back to our minds. And, that’s exactly what happens when a person from Milan comes nearby the leper hospital (Lazzaretto).
Depicted by Manzoni as a space detached from the city and full of sick people crying in agony, it was used during the plague of the 1629-1630 to host the infected. After the plague, it was converted to other uses, particularly concerning the military one, until it was demolished in the second half of the 19th century to create more space for the construction of new dwellings. The only part that has remained intact is the one along Via San Gregorio. Have a look and, if you feel romantic enough, imagine the main characters of the Promessi Sposi, Renzo and Lucia, reunite within these walls.
Via San Gregorio, Milano, MI, Italia