The Policies of Agilulf and the Iconography of the Val Di Nievole Visor
By Julia Bolotina
The Future of History: An Undergraduate Journal, Vol.5 (2009-10)
Introduction: The Val di Nievole visor, a gilded bronze piece now kept at the Museo Nazionale del Bergetto in Florence, depicts King Agilulf (King of the Lombards 590-616 CE, identified by an inscription) surrounded by guards, Victories, and genuflecting figures bearing crowns. The visor is a subtle work of propaganda whose main function is to echo and reinforce Agilulf’s efforts at consolidating the power of the Lombard monarchy. This paper will provide an overview of the relevant elements of Agilulf’s policies – military action against competing dukes, a reinforcement of his personal claim to rule, and an extensive ideological campaign – and then demonstrate how the visor functions as a visual representation of these aims.