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Sophie Page

Astrology is the art of predicting events on earth as well as human character and disposition from the movements of the planets and fixed stars. Medieval astrology encompassed both general concepts of celestial influence, and the technical art of making predictions with horoscopes, symbolic maps of the heavens at particular moments and places constructed from astronomical information. The scientific foundations of the art were developed in ancient Greece, largely lost in early medieval Europe and recovered by the Latin West from Arabic sources in the 12th and 13th centuries. Late medieval astrological images were successfully Christianized and were adapted to particular contexts, acquired local meanings and changed over time.

Astrology developed into a scientific branch of learning in ancient Greece, but because of the opposition of the Church Fathers it was transmitted to early medieval Europe in only fragmentary form in technically unsophisticated textbooks and popular divinatory genres. Literary and scientific texts provided more general ideas about the nature and attributes of the planets which were influential on later iconography. The first significant astrological images appear in 11th-century illustrated astronomical texts (e.g. London, BL, Cotton MS. Tiberius BV), which were acquired and produced by monasteries to aid with time-keeping and the construction of the Christian calendar....


Karolina Lanckorońska

[Karl Anton Leo Ludwig]

(b Vienna, Nov 4, 1848; d Vienna, July 15, 1933).

Polish archaeologist, writer, collector and patron, active in Austria. As an archaeologist his main interest lay in the architectural ruins of the late Roman Empire in Anatolia. In 1884 he organized an expedition of which he later published an account, Stadt Pamphyliens und Pisidiens. Sketches made by Jacek Malczewski (e.g. Warsaw, Royal Castle; mainly watercolours) are also records of the expedition. Lanckoroński and Malczewski later toured Italy and travelled to Munich together. Other artists patronized by Lanckoroński included Antoni Madeyski (1862–1939), Henryk Rodakowski and Hans Makart. During 1888 and 1889 Lanckoroński made a round-the-world voyage and subsequently published a diary of this trip, entitled Rund um die Erde. He brought back to Vienna various works of art, mainly sculptures and textiles. Between 1890 and 1895 a Baroque Revival palace was built for him in Vienna to designs by Ferdinand Fellner and Hermann Hellmer (1849–1919). In it Lanckoroński installed paintings, mainly Dutch and French, that he had inherited and Italian paintings he had purchased (e.g. Masaccio’s ...



Luca Leoncini

[Nero Claudius Drusus Germanicus Caesar]

(b Antium [now Anzio], 15 Dec ad 37; reg ad 54–68; d Rome, 9 June ad 68).

Roman emperor and patron. His influence on Roman architecture was profound, despite his premature death from suicide. In ad 59 he completed the Circus of Caligula in the valley of the Vatican, in which he introduced Greek games (the Ludi Juvenales) to Rome. The Baths of Nero (ad 62–4), built to the west of Agrippa’s Pantheon, stunned his contemporaries by their splendour. As restored by Alexander Severus (ad 227), the baths comprised a symmetrical building with an adjoining gymnasium, but it is impossible to say whether its Neronian form anticipated the great Imperial thermae (see Rome, ancient, §II, 1, (i), (d)). The Emperor was blamed for a fire that broke out during the night of 18 July ad 64 and destroyed many parts of the city, not only because of the many crimes he had committed, but also because of the grandiose works he had undertaken for the renewal of the city. Although Nero’s direct responsibility for the fire remains doubtful, the city was in fact rebuilt to his taste. New building standards were adopted to prevent the repetition of such vast fires, including the restriction of the height of buildings to 70 feet (...


Luca Leoncini

[before adoption, Titus Aurelius Fulvus Boionius Arrius Antoninus; as emperor, Caesar Aelius Hadrianus Antoninus Augustus Pius]

(b Lanuvium [now Lanuvio], nr Rome, 19 Sept ad 86; reg 138–61; d Lorium, nr Rome, 7 March ad 161).

Roman emperor and patron. His long reign was characterized by a rare security, peace and prosperity, but little architectural development in Rome compared with the reigns of his predecessors. Nevertheless, under Antoninus the monumental area of the Campus Martius was further enriched with a great octastyle peripteral temple in honour of the deified Hadrian (the Hadrianeum, ded. ad 145; see Rome, ancient, §II, 2, (i), (f)), which in part still exists. The interior decoration included reliefs personifying the provinces (most are in Rome, Mus. Conserv. and Naples, Mus. Archeol. N.) and emphasized the Emperor’s policy of bringing peace and order to the Empire. In the old and crowded centre on the Via Sacra a temple was built to Antoninus’ wife Faustina in the same year that she died and was deified (ad 141). When the Emperor died, the dedication was extended to include him. The temple, incorporated in the Middle Ages into the church of S Lorenzo in Miranda, stood on a high podium, approached by a stairway. Its façade displays six large columns of green cipollino marble with white marble Corinthian capitals, with three more columns behind on each side. On the two long sides of the cella, faced with squares of peperino tufa, runs a marble frieze with griffins flanking plant motifs....


(b Rome, Nov 16, 42 bc; reg ad 14–37; d Misenum [now Miseno], 16 March ad 37).

Roman emperor and patron. In ad 23 he retired permanently to Capreae, forsaking Rome and its architectural development. However, although the reign of Tiberius was certainly modest in terms of building activity, the judgements of Suetonius (Tiberius xlvii.1) and Dio display the exaggerated hostility that characterizes their accounts of this emperor. In fact, apart from the various buildings he restored (including the stage-building of the Theatre of Pompey (ad 21) and the Temple of Castor in the Forum Romanum (ad 6; see fig. i), three elegant Corinthian columns of which are still extant), he was responsible for the Domus Tiberiana on the Palatine—the first true palace built there as a single unit by an emperor—and the Castra Praetoria, the camp of the Praetorian Guard (ad 21–23). The latter employed opus latericium (the use of fired clay bricks), a new system of construction that was to revive Roman architecture, as can be seen in the large stretches of its outer walls that still stand. Between ...