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The Mosque in Via Celso
I am not sure what this building was before it was a mosque. The fence posts bear crescent moons and often I see clean wet laundry hung on the fence, jeans and shirts, as if someone lives there. Many Moslems go to storefront mosques on Friday afternoons, but this one is lovely with rugs on the floor. I peered in through the glass door one day when no one was around. Lots of rugs and water bottles. Men of all races with beautiful white caps on their heads show up serially and enter all afternoon.
The mosque is in Via Celso, a corruption of Via Gelso,which means Mulberry Street, named for the trees that were cultivated for the breeding of silkworms, an important Sicilian industry a few centuries ago. Sicilian silk was the rage in Paris. Thanks to Professor Carlo di Franco and his La Palermo Dei Misteri tours for this cultural tidbit.
In downtown New York, Mulberry Street is the last rampart of Little Italy.
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