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Saturday, 31 March 2007

Count the Devils

In the city of Palermo, specifically in the district called Olivuzza, you can find an enormous palace that looks like a castle; its name is Zisa. Zisa has a huge entrance, made of gold and full of charming frescoes; right in the center is a marble fountain that sprays fresh water and in which the golden mosaics of the walls are reflected. They say that the Zisa has an enchantment and a treasure of golden coins hides there. The guardians of both are the Devils whom originally were meant to guard them against the Christians. This palace was built at the time of the Pagans and it was here that they were hiding the Emperor's treasures. The Devils' paintings are located in the entrance and whoever goes there during the Festivity of Saint Annunziata (March 25) can see their tails snaking and their mouths growling. Nobody really knows how many there are; some say there are 13, others 15, perhaps more. They are devils and for this reason nobody will ever be able to count them. Even the golden coins, nobody knows how many there really are and nobody has ever been able to find them. Perhaps one day somebody will solve this mystery and Palermo will be rich again.

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