The Rhetoric of Power: Della Rovere Palaces and Processional Routes in Late Fifteenth-Century Rome (Italica Press Studies in Art & History)

The Rhetoric of Power: Della Rovere Palaces and Processional Routes in Late Fifteenth-Century Rome (Italica Press Studies in Art & History) History product by

When Francesco della Rovere became Pope Sixtus IV in 1471, his rather prosaic family background was a handicap to his social and political authority. Since he had no "house" connecting him to part of a great continuum, extending deep into the past and far into the future, he used a variety of agents to fashion one. In some places he actively intervened, elevating six members of his family to the cardinalate and placing others in positions of power in the secular world. But in other places, those family members created the images supportive of the house of della Rovere, actions based on a climate of preconditions which the pope in part had engendered. This study of the interaction between a set of historical circumstances - a family that comes to power with limited experience and unlimited resources - and the production of a significant body of Renaissance art - della Rovere palaces in Rome - emphasizes the patterns of patronage deduced from specific choices and argues that della Rovere palaces testify to their evolving political and social strength. The primary assumption of this work is that art patronage is a rhetorical means by which the della Rovere attempted to accomplish some very practical and symbolic goals - the expression of power and the legitimization of that power to the people of Rome....

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