This study examines the role of trust in Genoese merchant enterprises in the sixteenth century. While great merchants and international financiers could rely on the state and its bank, smaller traders were left to their own devices. With no durable centralized state institutions to regulate and bolster long-distance trade, Genoese merchants relied on informal networks consisting of a combination of close associates and transient partners.
Of the several faces identified as self-portraits in Michelangelo’s Last Judgment, only the one on the skin held by St. Bartholomew has been widely accepted as such. This essay does not dispute that identification, but does argue against the interpretation of it as a representation of the artist’s psychological torment. Other self-references within the fresco, including one made visible only after the recent cleaning, suggest a different interpretation: one that focuses on the resurrection of the physical body, set within the context of contemporary debates about the self.
Studies of the political impact of tithe collection in medieval and early modern Europe have tended to consider the phenomenon as secular taxation of church property. This article examines how, in the parts of the archdiocese of Lyon subject to the sovereign house of Savoy (Bresse, Bugey, and Valromey), the regional clergy assembly itself was responsible for tithe assessment and collection. Because of its control of this process, the Bresse clergy assembly was able to play a significant role in a regional political configuration that included a variety of actors, both clerical and secular.
The poetry of Madeleine Des Roches (ca. 1520–87) exhibits a concern with literary community. In Ode 3, from the 1578/79 OEuvres, she draws on a rich tradition of writings about women and postulates a new community for women writers. The interest in community extends to her sources, which were written by members of important literary groups or which create fictional communities. Des Roches distinguishes herself from predecessors who include Louise Labé, Giovanni Boccaccio, and the Pléiade poets.
Far from being a naively provincial document in the history of art treatises, Henry Peacham’s The Art of Drawing (1606) deserves credit for introducing English readers to continental art theory and pedagogy. His groundbreaking handbook borrows an incremental teaching method from Serlio, an art-theoretical superstructure from Lomazzo, and an imitative drawing program from Fialetti, and conflates these into a practical guide aimed at English readers.
The terms of religious coexistence established by the Edict of Nantes in 1598 posed many challenges as French Catholics and Protestants struggled to bridge the gap between the edict’s provisions and their everyday lives. This article focuses on two pastoral visitations conducted in the dioceses of Vaison and Aix-en-Provence in the wake of the edict’s promulgation. Not only were they among the first dioceses to introduce Catholic reform in France; they were also home to biconfessional communities.
This article analyzes how Tridentine reform was introduced to rural and township parishes of the Cracow diocese in the initial stage of the reform’s implementation. The work focuses on those areas where the Reformation was at its most advanced. Calvinism and to a small extent Antitrinitarianism became popular mostly with the nobility and the gentry, but seldom did they gain followers in other social strata of the day. Several themes are important in what follows. The Catholic church fought with isolated heterodoxy mostly by taking back the parish churches the Protestants had appropriated.
This article considers antipuritans in Elizabethan and early Stuart England as they were portrayed in didactic texts, especially dialogues, and as they appear in court records. When godly Protestants were dubbed “puritan,” they responded with the antipuritan, a caricature of their critics as dull-witted despisers of religion who excused their indifference by calling the zealous “puritans.” The article then asks whether antipuritans were only a useful polemical fiction, and finds real antipuritans in the records of diocesan courts, visitations, and the Star Chamber.
The congrégations in Geneva, held on Fridays, were instituted for the ongoing training of the ministers of the word and for the preservation of unity in doctrine. The sources reveal also that lay members of the church were present on a regular basis in the biblical study meetings. This essay is intended to identify as many individual lay participants as possible and to evaluate their social and economic status in the city as well as their relation to the leading ministers. The sources disclose that some artisans attended the biblical study group.
Michelangelo signed only one work with his name, the Pietà in Saint Peter’s Basilica. As his first public commission in Rome, the sculpture gave the young artist an opportunity to establish his reputation and public image. The band across the Virgin’s chest serves no other function than to hold Michelangelo’s signature, which was not added as an afterthought as Vasari claimed in his 1568 biography of the artist. Although Michelangelo had carefully planned his inscription, its style of execution suggests letters that are spontaneously written, not carved.