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Caterina Sforza’s Experiments with Alchemy

She collected over four hundred alchemical, medicinal, and cosmetic recipes, and corresponded with other alchemical adepts about materials and laboratory techniques.

Foundation Myths in Medieval and Renaissance Italy

The 3 papers featured here looked at the development of the civic identities of Florence, Genoa and Rome through art, architecture and foundation legends.

Dyes, Diets and Deodorants: Venetian Beauty Secrets Revealed

If you think it’s hard to keep up a beauty regime now, wait until you see what lengths the Venetians went to in order to be beautiful!

Beyond the Medical Text: Health and Illness in Early Medieval Italian Sources

The vast majority of surviving evidence for health care, medicine and attitudes to illness in early medieval northern Italy comes not from traditional medical texts, but legal, hagiographical and archaeological sources.

Quiz: The Italian Renaissance

Test your knowledge of the Italian Renaissance!

Drawings of Leonardo da Vinci to tour British Isles in 2016

Throughout 2016, ten of the finest drawings by Leonardo da Vinci in the Royal Collection will travel to four museums and galleries across the United Kingdom and Ireland in a new exhibition.

Quiz: Politics and the State in the Renaissance, 1450-1521

This quiz tests your knowledge of the Italian city-states during the Renaissance.

Why did Attila leave Italy?

Reporting on the paper ‘Attila’s Appetite: The Logistics of Attila the Hun’s Invasion of Italy in 452’, by Jason Linn, given at the International Congress on Medieval Studies

Renaissance Splendors in L.A.

Danielle Trynoski takes in the new Renaissance Splendors of the Northern Italian Courts exhibit at the Getty Center in Lost Angeles

Teenage Rebellion in the Middle Ages: How Salimbene de Adam became a Franciscan

It is a popular story – the teenage son defying his parents and doing something very rebellious. It could be using drugs, getting a tattoo, or falling into with the wrong type of people. Back in the thirteenth-century, the rebellious son might become a Franciscan!

Sacerdos et Predicator: Franciscan ‘Experience’ and the Cronica of Salimbene de Adam

The Chronicle of the thirteenth-century Franciscan friar Salimbene de Adam is filled with an abundance of self-referential passages.

Getty Museum opens Renaissance Splendors of the Northern Italian Courts exhibition

The J. Paul Getty Museum has opened its newest exhibition – Renaissance Splendors of the Northern Italian Courts – which brings together 25 works including illuminated manuscripts, paintings and drawings that showcases the beautiful artistic production taking place in cities such as Milan and Ferrara during the 15th century.

Lightning Strikes in Medieval Florence

Luca Landucci writes about lightning strikes in 15th century Florence.

Top Ten Insults against Savonarola

‘He is a fruit quite worthy of his diabolical seed.’

Breaking the Mold: The First Woman in Italian Literature

Active between 1260-1270, the woman known only as La Compiuta Donzella (the fulfilled damsel) attracted the attention of several male writers. Two of them were astonished that such wisdom could be found in a female.

Some Wise Advice from Francesco Guicciardini

Ten of our favourite maxims from the Italian Renaissance scholar Francesco Guicciardini

An Italian cemetery may provide clues on cholera’s evolution

Burial grounds ‘a thousand-year history’ into human health

How to restore virginity – advice from Caterina Sforza

If you follow the advice of Caterina Sforza, ‘you will see that thing become so narrow that you yourself will be in admiration.’

10 Creepy Things to See at the Louvre That Are Better Than the Mona Lisa

If you’re an ancient historian, a medievalist, or early modernist, there are so many other amazing pieces and works of art a the Louvre other than these two tourist staples. Here is my list of cool, creepy, unusual and better than the Mona Lisa at the Louvre in Paris.

From Tempests and Hydraulic Machines to the Arno Diversion: the Historical Significance of da Vinci’s Study of Water

Reemergence of classical thought and the importance of water in society led da Vinci to pursue multiple projects regarding his study of water – culminating in the project to divert the Arno River.

Move over Milan! Late Medieval and Renaissance Fashion in Venice

Milan may be Italy’s current fashion capital, but Venice had an important role to play in the development of the Italian fashion and textile industry since the late middle ages and renaissance period.

The Importance of Being Good: Moral Philosophy in the Italian Universities, 1300–1600

This paper therefore explores how important moral philosophy was, during the Italian Renaissance, as an independent university subject, and whether its status had a direct relationship with that of rhetorical studies

Shaping a Saint’s Identity: The Imagery of Thomas Becket in Medieval Italy

This article sets out to trace the visual responses to the sainthood of Thomas of Canterbury outside of his original cultural context, namely in Italy, where his cult was readily received, integrated and modified.

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