I'm watching the new(ish) film adaptation of A Midsummer Night's Dream.
The play is set in Athens. Now, as with most of Shakespeare, Athens strongly resembles England. Which is fair enough. There are men named Peter Quince as well as Theseus. So far, so good. Athens may as well be in Shropshire.
You know where Athens isn't?
I've been looking at maps of the Mediterranean on a regular basis for the last six or eight years. Every one I have looked at has Athens firmly on the mainland in Greece, separated from Italy by the Ionian Sea.
This means that people should not say "buongiorno," or "buona sera." They should say "kallispera" instead (if it is the evening). Thin, dark women should not expostulate in Italian while waving their arms. This does not add verisimilitude. Indeed, it detracts, since everyone else is speaking in English.
I know that Edwardian Italy is thought to be very picturesque, and Edwardian Greece somewhat less so. I don't care. This story has fairies in it. Surely we can suspend our disbelief so far as to allow a charming Greece. Much easier, I should think, than a Greece without Athens.
PS It's worse than I thought. Puck just walked past a bad copy or adaptation of the famous sarcophagus of the Etruscan couple. Athens is still not in Etruria. And you can't even claim a common artistic heritage. Morons.