Recognizing the "Other Renaissance" of Northern Europe
by Paul Strathern
From Copernicus to Shakespeare, the intellectual transformations of northern Europe have seldom been understood as a world-changing ferment akin to those taking place in Italy.
For Derby Day, a Note of Caution About Horses and "Races"
by Mackenzie Cooley
The thoroughbreds on display at Churchill Downs next Saturday carry on Italian renaissance practices of horse breeding for sport and aesthetic pleasure. But the spectacle warns of another legacy: the fateful transfer of the term "race" from purposefully selected lineages of horses to broad groupings of humans.
Renaissance Scholar Claims to Uncover Mystery of DaVinci's Family History—in a Novel
Carlo Vecce connected documents he discovered in the State Archives in Florence to conclude that Leonardo's mother, Caterina, was a woman brought from the Caucasus as a slave and emancipated by DaVinci's father soon after his birth. His choice to present the findings in fiction has drawn admirers and skeptics.
The Renaissance's Challenges to Church Authority and Influence on the Reformation
Stefania Tutino, a history professor at UCLA and intellectual and cultural historian of post-Reformation Catholicism, says the Reformation and Renaissance were two parallel but intertwined movements.
SOURCE: The Conversation
Giving the Women of the Divine Comedy their Due
by Laura Ingallinella
One scholar's project is using Wikipedia and her students to recover the historical personhood of Dante's women and elevate them above literary symbols or caricatures.
A Story Of War, Theft And A Beautiful Woman, Back In The U.S. After 70+ Years
Botticelli's portrait of Simonetta Vespucci had a wild ride through World War II, including being stored in a Nazi salt mine.
'Where Are The Women?': Uncovering The Lost Works Of Female Renaissance Artists
Since 2009, a nonprofit organization called Advancing Women Artists has worked to recover work by female artists and document the history of sexism in the arts.
SOURCE: The New Yorker
A Fuller Picture of Artemisia Gentileschi
As one of the first women to forge a successful career as a painter, Artemisia was celebrated internationally in her lifetime, but her reputation languished after her death.
A Mathematical Duel in 16th Century Venice (Excerpt)
by Fabio Toscano translated Arturo Sangalli
The advancement of mathematics in renaissance Italy was complicated by a context of secrecy, jealousy, and competitive dueling governed by implicit codes of honor.
I Wrote a Book About Renaissance Queens. Today’s Stories of Sex Assault Sound Like Something Out of the 16th Century.
by Sarah Gristwood
Like today many men blamed the victim.
Ronald G. Witt, Who Gave the Renaissance a New Birthdate, Dies at 84
Witt redrew the map of the Renaissance through influential studies that identified the first stirrings of Italian humanism in a period well before the birth of its traditional father, Petrarch.
SOURCE: The Cambridge Student
Cambridge historian reveals double life of Renaissance artist
A history student doing research on a landscape artist in the Renaissance turned up evidence suggesting he was a spy (sort of) for the Medici.
SOURCE: Smithsonian Magazine
CSI: Italian Renaissance
High on the facade of Santa Maria Antica, among soaring Gothic spires and forbidding statues of knights in armor, pathologist Gino Fornaciari prepared to examine a corpse. Accompanied by workmen, he had climbed a 30-foot scaffold erected against this medieval church in Verona, Italy, and watched as they used hydraulic jacks to raise the massive lid of a marble sarcophagus set in a niche. Peering inside, Fornaciari found the body of a male in his 30s, wearing a long silk mantle, arms crossed on his chest. The abdomen was distended from postmortem putrefaction, although Fornaciari caught no scent of decomposition, only a faint waft of incense. He and the laborers eased the body onto a stretcher and lowered it to the ground; after dark, they loaded it into a van and drove to a nearby hospital, where Fornaciari began a series of tests to determine why the nobleman died—and how he had lived.
Alarm sounded over state of Italy's historic monuments
ROME (AFP).- Alarm bells are ringing once more over the upkeep of Italy's historic monuments, from the Roman city of Pompeii to the Colosseum, with budget cuts hampering repairs and UNESCO issuing a stern rebuke."Over the last five years, the culture budget has been reduced by two thirds," Culture Minister Massimo Bray complained in an interview on Monday published in Italian newspapers.Italy is now lagging well behind its European counterparts: the country allocates just 1.1 percent of its budget to culture, compared to 7.4 percent in Ireland, 3.3 percent in Spain and 2.5 percent in France.The lack of funds is having a disastrous affect on the country's archaeological treasures, with many sites closed due to fears of rock collapses and others sporadically shut by protests and strikes....
SOURCE: BBC News
Mysterious Voynich manuscript has 'genuine message'
The message inside "the world's most mysterious medieval manuscript" has eluded cryptographers, mathematicians and linguists for over a century.And for many, the so-called Voynich book is assumed to be a hoax.But a new study, published in the journal Plos One, suggests the manuscript may, after all, hold a genuine message.Scientists say they found linguistic patterns they believe to be meaningful words within the text.Whether or not it really does have any meaningful information, though, is much debated by amateurs and professionals alike....
SOURCE: Discovery News
Famed Warrior Medici Died From Gangrene
The legendary Renaissance warrior Giovanni de’ Medici did not die from an improperly amputated leg, as widely believed, but an infection.Also known as “Giovanni dalle Bande Nere” for the black bands of mourning he wore after the death of Pope Leo X, the 16th century army commander was exhumed last November from his tomb in the Medici Chapels in Florence. Researchers also exhumed the bones of his wife, Maria Salviati.The couple married in 1516, when she was 17 and he was 18. The marriage produced only one child: Cosimo I, who reigned as the first Grand Duke of Tuscany, creating the Uffizi and the magnificent Boboli Gardens as well as finishing the Pitti Palace....
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