1-20 of 79 results  for:

  • Christian Art x
  • 1500–1600 x
Clear all


Claire Baines

(b Dec 12, 1479; d ?Bologna, c. April 1552).

Italian historian, topographer, writer and patron. He was a friar and first entered the Dominican Order at Forlì but was in Bologna from 1495 and was officially transferred to the monastery there in 1500. Alberti received an extensive grounding in humanist studies under the Bolognese rhetorician Giovanni Garzoni. After acting as companion to the head of the order, Tomaso de Vio Cajetan, Alberti was made Provinciale di Terra Santa in Rome in 1520. This included the role of travelling companion to Tomaso’s successor, Fra Silvestri da Ferrara (‘il Ferrariense’). His travels with Silvestri throughout Italy, including the islands, laid the foundations for his most important work, the Descrittione di tutta l’Italia (1550), modelled on the Italia illustrata of Flavio Biondo. It was reprinted many times: the Venice edition of 1561 was the first to include Alberti’s sections on the islands of Italy, which were not covered by Biondo; the Venice edition of ...


Ursula Härting



John N. Lupia

Type of ewer, usually of metal, used for the washing of hands in a liturgical or domestic context. It is often zoomorphic in form and usually has two openings, one for filling with water and the other for pouring. In their original usage aquamanilia expressed the symbolic significance of the lavabo, the ritual washing of the hands by the priest before vesting, before the consecration of the Eucharist and after mass. The earliest production of aquamanilia is associated with Mosan art of the Meuse Valley in northern France, and with Lower Saxony in north-east Germany. The majority of surviving examples are made of a variety of bronze that resembles gold when polished, while nearly all those made of precious metals are known only from church inventories.

Church documents refer to aquamanilia as early as the 5th century, when canon regulations stipulated that on ordination the subdeacon should receive such a vessel. Various documents from the 5th century to the beginning of the 11th sometimes use the term to denote both the ewer and its basin. Sometime after the beginning of the 11th century the term became transferred to a type of vessel, usually in the shape of an animal (e.g. lion, stag, horse; ...


Nigel Gauk-Roger

[Congregation of Regular Clerks of St Paul]

Religious order. It was founded in Milan in 1530 by Antonio Zaccaria (1502–39) of Cremona, Bartolommeo Ferrari (1499–1544) and Giacomo Antonio Morigia (1497–1546) as a monastic but unenclosed congregation, on the model of the Theatines, to promote a life of poverty, prayer and missionary conversion through example and public preaching. In 1535 it received papal recognition as a religious order, and a sister order, the Angeliche, was established for its aristocratic Milanese patronesses. The first public chapel was opened in 1542 and the Order acquired the small suburban church of S Barnaba, from which the Order’s popular name derived, in 1545. A second college was founded in Pavia in 1554. The Order expanded under the patronage of Carlo Borromeo, Archbishop of Milan from 1564. By 1659, when the headquarters were moved to Rome, there were 55 colleges, chiefly in northern and central Italy, and also in Naples, Savoy, France and Austria. The Barnabites later concentrated on the consolidation, enlargement and embellishment of existing foundations. Many of the Italian colleges suppressed under Napoleonic rule were regained but none elsewhere. In the 19th century the Barnabites developed educational interests that extended into the 20th century, as did their missionary work in Africa and Latin America....


Ludovico Borgo and Margot Borgo

[Porta, Baccio della]

(b Florence, March 28, 1472; d Florence, Oct 31, 1517).

Italian painter and draughtsman. Vasari and later historians agree that Fra Bartolommeo was an essential force in the formation and growth of the High Renaissance. He was the first painter in Florence to understand Leonardo da Vinci’s painterly and compositional procedures. Later he created a synthesis between Leonardo’s tonal painting and Venetian luminosity of colour. Equally important were his inventions for depicting divinity as a supernatural force, and his type of sacra conversazione in which the saints are made to witness and react to a biblical event occurring before their eyes, rather than standing in devout contemplation, as was conventional before. His drawings, too, are exceptional both for their abundance and for their level of inventiveness. Many artists came under his influence: Albertinelli, Raphael, Andrea del Sarto, Titian, Correggio, Beccafumi, Pontormo and Rosso Fiorentino.

Fra Bartolommeo was the son of Paolo, a muleteer and carter. After 1478 he lived in a modest family house outside the Porta S Pier Gattolini in Florence and consequently was dubbed Baccio (a Tuscan diminutive for Bartolommeo) della Porta. In ...


José Custódio Vieira da Silva

Former Hieronymite monastery and defensive tower built in the 16th century near Lisbon, Portugal. Together they form the most outstanding group of Manueline buildings in Portugal (see Manueline style). The monastery of S Maria de Belém is situated on the former Restelo Plain, c. 7 km west of the centre of Lisbon along the River Tagus. The Tower of Belém, 1 km further west along the river, was originally an island fort guarding the approach to Lisbon at the mouth of the Tagus. Although built for different purposes and quite independently, they appear united through the self-confidence of their hybrid architecture and their construction in pedra lioz, a local golden-coloured limestone. They have come to be regarded as symbols of Portugal, with their allusions to the ‘Age of Discoveries’.

Prince Henry the Navigator (1394–1460) founded S Maria de Belém, a chapel of the Order of Christ, for mariners. Soon after his accession ...


Annick Benavides

[Bitti, Aloisio Bernardino Giovanni Demócrito]

(b Camerino, the Marches, 1548; d Lima, 1610).

Italian painter and sculptor active in Peru. One of seven children born to Pablo and Cornelia Bitti, Bernardo Bitti commenced formal training in the arts at the age of 14 in Camerino and completed his training in Rome. He was inducted into the Society of Jesus as a Coadjutor Brother on 2 May 1568 at the age of 20. The General of the Society of Jesus, Everardo Mecurián, assigned Bitti to the Viceroyalty of Peru in 1573 at the request of the Jesuit Provincial in Peru, Diego Bracamante, who believed religious imagery would facilitate the Catholic indoctrination of indigenous Andeans at missions. After spending 14 months in Seville, Bitti arrived in Lima on 31 May 1575 and worked there for 8 years. He subsequently embarked on a peripatetic career decorating the interiors of Jesuit sites in Cuzco, Juli, La Paz, Sucre, Potosí, Arequipa, and Ayacucho.

Bitti created the main and lateral altarpieces of the Jesuit provisional church of S Pedro in Lima with the assistance of the Andalusian Jesuit artist Pedro de Vargas (...


Christopher de Hamel

Late medieval prayerbook containing, as its principal text, psalms, and devotions (primarily invoking the Virgin Mary) for the eight canonical hours of the day: Matins, Lauds, Prime, Terce, Sext, None, Vespers, and Compline. They were intended for private reading and meditation by the laity, forming a shorter version of the cycle of daily prayers and psalms recited from the Breviary by members of religious orders. Each office is usually no more than a few pages long, and the books are generally small and portable, often of octavo size. Most surviving Books of Hours were made in the 15th century and early 16th, and they were produced in such numbers that they still form the most common surviving group of European illuminated manuscripts.

The offering of psalms eight times a day can be traced back to early monasticism, and parallel forms of worship are found in lay devotions (see Service book...


Catherine Legros

Former Benedictine priory church, dedicated to St Nicholas of Tolentino, near Bourg-en-Bresse, Burgundy, France. Situated on an important road linking the northern provinces with Italy, the church was built by Margaret of Austria (see Habsburg, House of family, §I, (4)) after the death of her third husband Philibert the Fair, Duke of Savoy, in 1504. Earlier, in 1480, Margaret’s mother-in-law Margaret of Bourbon had undertaken to transform the small priory of Brou into a larger monastery if her husband Philippe, Comte de Bresse, survived a hunting accident, but despite his recovery the vow was not fulfilled. Margaret of Austria saw Philibert’s death, the result of another hunting accident, as divine retribution, and she immediately decided to initiate the work, securing the services of artists from the south Netherlands, Burgundy, Italy, and France. She spared no expense on the church’s embellishment, realizing that the monastery was fast becoming, in the eyes of her contemporaries, a testimony to her economic and political power and wishing to rival her sister-in-law Louise of Savoy (...


Robin A. Branstator


(d Copenhagen, 1553).

Danish sculptor and architect. His sculptural work shows a precocious awareness of early Renaissance art, suggesting that he trained in the workshop of Claus Berg in Odense. He first served Christian II, King of Denmark (reg 1512–23), as architect and sculptor and had settled in Copenhagen by 1523. His tombstone sculptures equal or surpass his architectural successes. The first in his series of gravestone reliefs was of Elisabeth of Habsburg (c. 1523; Copenhagen, Nmus.), Christian II’s queen, a pendant to an earlier representation of King John (1503; Copenhagen, Nmus.), sculpted by Adam van Düren. The limestone high relief had a conventional Gothic framework but hinted at Bussaert’s mature work in the more naturalistic folds of Elisabeth’s gown. After Christian II fled to the Netherlands in 1523, Bussaert elected to remain in Copenhagen in the employ of the newly crowned Frederick I (reg 1523–34). Frederick rewarded Bussaert well, naming him master builder in ...


Fernando Marías


(b Alcalá de Henares, Madrid, Aug 23, 1501; d Trigueros, Huelva, June 21, 1570).

Spanish architect. He began his career as an ecclesiastic in the parish of Caravaña, Madrid. After studying in Alcalá de Henares he served Cardinal Juan Pardo de Tavera as secretary (1534–6) and chaplain (1536–45) and travelled to Italy as his diplomatic envoy (1536). Tavera appointed him Inspector of Works for the archbishopric of Toledo, where he advised on the layout of the Hospital de S Juan Bautista (1541–50), which was founded by Tavera and built to Covarrubias’s designs. As the administrator (and rector) of the project (from 1549), Bustamante’s main responsibility lay with the organization of construction; his criticism of the different schemes confirms his actual absence from the planning process. In 1551 Bustamante left Toledo to join the Jesuit Order, becoming secretary (1552–4) to Francisco Borja (1510–72), Provincial of Andalusia (1555–61), general of the Jesuit Order (...


Diane Apostolos-Cappadona

Religious movement within Western Christendom, originating in the teaching of Jean Calvin (1509–64). In various contexts it is referred to as Presbyterianism, Puritanism or the Reformed Church; its French adherents were known as Huguenots.

There was no single or charismatic leader in the origins of Reformed Protestantism, which was a distinct movement within the pre-Reformation Church represented by Huldrych Zwingli (1484–1531), Heinrich Bullinger (1504–75), Martin Bucer (1491–1551) and Guillaume Farel (1489–1565). In its second generation, however, the French scholar and churchman Jean Calvin emerged as the most influential theologian and spokesman for Reformed Protestantism. He was the only one of the reformers to be trained as both a lawyer and a humanist. Before 4 May 1534 he had made his break with Roman Catholicism, being influenced by Christian humanism, Martin Luther’s texts and his personal experience of the Bible as the Word of God. Under threat of persecution, he left France between ...


A. D. Wright

Religious order of mendicants. It was founded in 1529 by Matteo da Bascio, and it was the last of a number of movements in the Franciscan order that sought a return to the supposed pristine form of the rule and a greater austerity than that of such orders as the Observants, to whom da Bascio had belonged. This asceticism involved da Bascio’s followers being discalced, wearing beards and incorporating a conspicuously pointed hood (cappuccio) in their habit. Opposition to the Capuchins’ independence from other branches of the Franciscan movement was only finally overcome by papal approval in the early 17th century. The Capuchins nevertheless spread not only within Italy but also to Spain (particularly after the death in 1598 of Philip II), Portugal, France and beyond. From their foundation, the Capuchins concentrated on apostolic preaching and spiritual ministry to the poor and oppressed. This and their evident poverty and detachment from family relations caused them to be widely admired among the lower orders of society. This admiration was enhanced by their heroic care of the sick in epidemics, and their services were also sought to reconcile feuds or to appeal to rulers for fiscal relief for their subjects, as St Lawrence of Brindisi did on behalf of South Italian subjects of Spain. Entry to political circles also led to a few Capuchins being employed in secret diplomacy, and the close association of the Capuchins with papal authority caused them to be excluded for a short time from the Venetian Republic during the Interdict of ...


Dagoberto L. Markl

(fl 1517–35).

South Netherlandish painter, active in Portugal. He is the most obviously Flemish of the artists working in Portugal during the first half of the 16th century. His earliest-known work may have been painted before he went to Portugal: the Mystic Marriage of St Catherine (London, N.G.), clearly influenced by the triptych of the same subject by Hans Memling (1479; Bruges, Memlingmus.). This affinity with the Bruges school and with Memling is apparent in all of Frei Carlos’s work, which is close to that of other painters then working in Évora, such as Francisco Henriques. Their marked Netherlandish characteristics derive in part from the panels of the great altarpiece dedicated to the Life of the Virgin (c. 1500; Évora, Mus. Évora), painted for Évora Cathedral by Netherlandish artists, which recalls the art of Hugo van der Goes, Gerard David and Quinten Metsys. Between 1510 and 1512 Carlos collaborated with the ...


Delia Kottmann

Italian village in Lazio, north of Rome, known for its church. The church of SS Anastasius and Nonnosus is all that remains of the 6th-century Benedictine monastery, which submitted to Cluny in ad 940. Apart from some re-used fragments, the architecture is Romanesque, with a Cosmati pavement in opus sectile as well as an ambo and ciborium. The church is famous for its wall paintings from the first quarter of the 12th century. The apse and its adjacent walls, showing the 24 elders, are influenced by Romano–Christian motifs. Christ in the middle of the conch is flanked by Peter and Paul in a Traditio legis depiction, with a procession of lambs below. Underneath, Maria Regina has to be reconstructed in the middle, between two conserved angels followed by female saints in a Byzantine manner. No Romano–Christian iconography seems to have influenced the vast apocalyptic cycle painted on the side walls of the transept. A band of prophets runs beneath the roof on all the walls of the transept. An inscription in the apse indicates three Roman painters....


A. S. Arbury

Large, temporary structure erected to commemorate the death of an important person. Designed to display a symbolic coffin for the deceased, catafalques were the visual and theological focal point of elaborate obsequies involving prayers, orations, a requiem mass and absolution rites. Their architectural forms and profuse decoration permitted complex iconographic programmes that glorified the deceased.

Catafalques were built primarily in the Catholic countries of Europe and in their colonies from the 16th to the 19th century. They were erected for illustrious persons, including monarchs, nobles, ecclesiastics, academicians and artists, but royal catafalques were the most numerous, the most spectacular and the best documented. Their development is obscure, but the introduction of the catafalque may be connected with the Habsburgs’ desire to emulate the august funeral practices of antiquity, for which justification was sought in Classical literature, the writings of the Church Fathers and the Bible. The custom was certainly popularized by the many catafalques erected throughout Europe for Holy Roman Emperor ...


Javier Rivera

Spanish monastery in the town of Celanova in the province of Orense, Galicia. It was founded in 936 by the bishop and monk St Rosendo (d 977), who was also abbot of the monastery from 959 until his death. The monastery belonged to the Benedictine Order and was dedicated to St Salvador. The oldest and most important part of the monastery, the chapel of St Michael of Celanova, founded in the 10th century by St Rosendo, is located in the former novitiate’s garden. It comprises a small pre-Romanesque, Mozarabic oratory that can be dated to the fourth decade of the 10th century, as the monastery was consecrated in 942. Its architectural language and its spatial concepts belong to contemporaneous art developed in the kingdom of León, with similarities to such buildings as Santiago de Peñalba and Santa Comba de Bande and drawing on Asturian, Visigothic, and Islamic influences. Its ground-plan covers an area of 22 sq. m, and the chapel reaches a maximum height of 6 m. It is composed of three spatial units arranged longitudinally. The first unit contains the access door on its south side; it has a square ground-plan and a horseshoe arch along its axis. The next unit, slightly larger in area and of a greater height, has a rectangular ground-plan and has a ribbed vault resting on arches with lobed pendentives. The chancel is entered via a horseshoe arch that is framed by an ...


(b Torrelaguna, 1436; d Roa, Nov 8, 1517).

Spanish archbishop and patron. He came from a minor family of the nobility, studied at Salamanca and went to Rome. As a priest he was curate to Cardinal Pedro Salazar de Mendoza in Sigüenza. He joined the Franciscan Order in 1484 and, through Mendoza’s influence, became confessor to Isabella, Queen of Castile and León, in 1492. He became General of his order in 1494 and, with royal support, began a vigorous reform of the monastic orders. As Archbishop of Toledo from 1495 he developed a hard-line policy against the Granada moriscos that led to the uprising of the Albaicín quarters of the city and the subsequent rebellion in the Alpujarras region, which was harshly suppressed and was followed by the first expulsion of the Moors (1502). This crusading spirit led him to make two military campaigns into Africa, which resulted in the conquests of Mers el Kébir (...


Lucinda Hawkins

[Giorgio; Klovic, Juraj]

(b Grisone [Grizane], Croatia, 1498; d Rome, Jan 3, 1578).

Italian painter and illuminator of Croatian birth. The most important illuminator of the 16th century, he was a ‘Michelangelo of small works’, according to Vasari. Many of his documented works are dispersed or untraced, and some attributions are controversial, but his secure oeuvre gives a clear idea of his stylistic influences and development. Although much of his inspiration came from Raphael and Michelangelo, he developed his own visual language, brilliantly translating their monumental forms for work on the smallest scale.

Educated in his native Croatia, Clovio came to Italy at the age of 18 to study art. He began his training in Venice and spent several years there in the service of Cardinal Domenico Grimani and his nephew Marino Grimani. During this period he visited Rome, where he met Giulio Romano and studied with him. This stay in Rome, as well as his experience of the art collections of the Grimani, which included many works by northern artists, notably Dürer, strongly influenced his artistic development. Around ...


Virginia Jansen

Town in Bavaria, Germany. A Hohenstaufen possession, it was a free imperial city by the 13th century, and in the 1370s the walls were expanded to their present extent. The parish church of St Georg, one of the most famous Late Gothic, south German hall churches, dominates the town at the main crossroads; its south side, facing the old Town Hall and cemetery, was originally the show side. Civic pride is evident in the building, symbols of the bakers’ and coopers’ guilds in the east window demonstrating the importance of the guilds, which shared power with the patrician families from the late 14th century.

The earliest known church on the site of St Georg was built in the 12th century. The existing west tower was added c. 1220–30, and in the second half of the 14th century the church was expanded to include a six-bay nave of nearly the same dimensions as the present one and a single-aisled choir terminating in a five-sided apse. The present church, slightly off the axis of its predecessor, was founded in ...