Leonardo da Vinci has taught us that we cannot love anything until we understand it. “Nothing,” he says, “can be loved or despised without first having knowledge of it. Love grows from a great knowledge of the object of desire, and if one has only a little knowledge, then one can only love a little, or not at all.”
And that applies as well to our “country,” says Guglielmini. A Frenchman cannot love his country if he does not know its history, nor can an Englishman love and respect his country without knowing its history, nor an Italian, nor German etc…That would be too easy. Human animals, before taking to a place and habitat, needs to explore, to know it, learn about amenities and such, find out if there are other competitors around, creatures to be feared, etc.. And only then can they decide whether or not to sign on. And once signed on, they need to be ready, if necessary, to fight in defence for their habitat, even to death. For how can, we human animals, how can we feel worthy as esteemed citizens of our country and place if we do not know its nature, its laws and its history?
In “Wonderland”, Orazio Guglielmini discusses this very objective: to know the story, the heart and soul of one’s country.