The Art and Language of Power in Renaissance Florence: Essays for Alison Brown

Edited by Amy R. Bloch, Carolyn James, & Camilla Russell - ES42

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This volume celebrates the scholarship of Alison Brown, emeritus professor in the department of history at Royal Holloway, University of London. A pre-eminent historian of the Renaissance, Professor Brown’s research has brought new perspectives not only to politics and the nature of the Florentine state, but also to the period’s intellectual and religious history and the great ferment of political thought from the humanists to Savonarola, Machiavelli, and Guicciardini. Her vibrant and original inquiries, grounded both in Florence’s archival treasures and in the rich intellectual and artistic traditions of Renaissance Italy, deftly interweave politics, culture, and ideas to yield novel and eye-opening interpretations.

The essays in this book by Professor Brown’s friends and colleagues find inspiration in the themes she has explored and in her dedication to the highest aims and most exacting standards of historical research. The contributions focus on a wide variety of topics, including politics and political thought, family life, art, philosophy, law, and humanism. In providing a portrait of Renaissance studies today as a dynamic field influenced in myriad ways by Professor Brown’s insights and methods, the volume is a tribute to the far-reaching influence of her scholarship.
Ed. Amy R. Bloch, Carolyn James, and Camilla Russell.

452 pp. + 21 colour illustrations.
ISBN: 978-0-7727-5659-6 softcover, 978-0-7727-5661-9 hardcover
Published: 2019
"This volume makes a significant contribution to Florentine political and cultural history."
William Caferro, Vanderbilt University

"This volume digs deep into Alison Brown’s terrain, the political culture of Renaissance Florence, with interlocking and original essays on politics, art, and humanism that combine big arguments and extensive archival research … a thematically tight and focused festschrift."
Mark Jurdjevic, Glendon College, York University

Preface – Amy R. Bloch, Carolyn James and Camilla Russell

Introductory Essay
1. Roslyn Pesman, "Alison Brown and Late Fifteenth-Century Florentine History: An Appreciation"

The Political and Social Milieu of Renaissance Florence
2. Luca Boschetto, "Machiavelli’s Family and Social Background: The Enigma of Messer Bernardo’s Illegitimacy"
3. Francesco Guidi-Bruscoli, "The 1487 Medici-Cybo Marriage and its Implications for the Medici Bank in Rome"
4. Lorenzo Fabbri, "Women’s Rights According to Lorenzo De’ Medici: The Borromei-Pazzi Dispute and the Lex de testamentis"
5. Andrea Guidi, "Chancellor Angelo Marzi da San Gimignano: An Episode in Record-Keeping and the Rise of Medicean Autocracy in Sixteenth-Century Florence"
6. Fabrizio Ricciardelli, "Social Control and Political Consensus in Quattrocento Florence"
7. Jérémie Barthas, "'Altra volta ne ragionai a lungo': A Reinterpretation of Niccolò Machiavelli’s Cryptic Clause in The Prince"

Art in Political and Ritual Contexts
8. Riccardo Fubini, "The Portico Frieze of the Medici Villa at Poggio a Caiano: Giovanni Pico della Mirandola’s Influence"
9. Amy R. Bloch, "A Note on the Movement of Michelangelo’s David"
10. Jonathan K. Nelson, "Breaking Conventions: Donor Portraits in Ghirlandaio’s Malatesta Altarpiece"
11. Eckart Marchand, "The Materials of Ephemeral Sculpture in Renaissance Italy"

Humanism, The History of Ideas, And Intellectual Life: From Renaissance Florence to Twentieth-Century London
12. Gabriele Pedullà, "Against Peacemakers: Niccolò Machiavelli on the End of Tumults"
13. Simone Testa, "'Che l’amore seguiti l’interesse': The Language of Power in Giovanfrancesco Lottini’s Discorso sopra le attioni del conclave"
14. Maia Wellington Gahtan, "Historia testis temporum: Cesare Ripa’s Historia between Philosophy and Allegory"
15. Stefano U. Baldassarri, "Feigning Ignorance: The Case of Giannozzo Manetti’s Against the Jews and the Gentiles"
16. Maria Fubini Leuzzi, "Vincenzio Borghini’s Travelling Library"
17. Camilla Russell, "The Renaissance Comes to Bloomsbury: Studies in the Italian Renaissance in Twentieth-Century London"

Concluding Essay
18. John M. Najemy, "Alison Brown’s Florentine Revolution"