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Naval Academy

The Naval Academy of Livorno is a military university which is responsible
for the technical training and military preparation of officers of the Italian
Navy. During the Second World War, due to the bombings that struck Livorno
between 1943 and ’44, the Naval Academy was forced to move first to Venice and,
later, after only two months, to Brindisi, at the Naval College “Niccolò
Tommaseo” – belonging to Italian Youth of the Lictor – where it remained
until June 5th, 1946, when the Naval Academy made its return to
Livorno. The first flag with a Republican emblem, was formally presented on
December 4th, 1948, the day of Santa Barbara, patron saint of the
Navy, by the President of the Republic Luigi Einaudi. The bombing had heavily damaged
many of the buildings in the city, including those that housed the academy, so it
was necessary, at the end of the conflict, to undertake a substantial
reconstruction and upgrading of the infrastructure, which lasted about twenty
years.

Today, the main body of the academy is accessed along a tree-lined avenue entering
through the gate of San Jacopo on the Viale Italia seafront. It consists of a
large three-storey building with three perpendicular wings enclosing a large
internal “parade ground”; the main wing, overlooking the sea, is
surmounted by a square tower with a three-sided clock and, on the pediment of
the inner façade, the motto Homeland and Honor. The side of the inner courtyard
facing the Ligurian Sea is not occupied by buildings, but is characterized by
an underground brig whose superstructures are still used today by the students
of the Academy to practice sail handling, also in anticipation of the cruise on
the training ship “Amerigo Vespucci”.

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