Printer Friendly

Appropriating the instruments of worship: the 1512 Medici restoration and the Florentine cathedral choirbooks *.

The first day of September 1512 was a pivotal date in the history of Renaissance Florence. After the fall of Piero Soderini's government and after eighteen years in exile, Giuliano de' Medici (1479-15 16), son of Lorenzo ii Magnifico (1449-92), returned to Florence. The months and years that followed were characterized by the progressive consolidation of the Medici regime, in the spheres of civic as well as religious power. (1) On 17 March 1513, only six months after Giuliano's re-entry; his brother Giovanni (1475-1521) was elected pope, ascending the throne of St. Peter as Leo X. Leo was quick to establish strong diplomatic ties with his native city. Just one month after his election, he appointed his cousin Giulio de' Medici (1478-1534) archbishop of Florence.

The reaffirmation of Medici authority found expression in some of the civic and private art created for the eminent family. It took on two central themes, that of dynasty--which proclaimed the family's legitimacy as rulers of Florence--and that of destiny--expressed through the "emphasis on the inevitable return of the exiled Medici to Florence." (2) Both themes were directly linked to another prominent preoccupation, the recovery of the Golden Age, conceived as the return to the years of glory and splendor of Lorenzo ii Magnifico. While monuments such as the Palazzo della Signoria (the sear of the city government), San Lorenzo (the Medici's parish church), and the villa at Poggio a Caiano (one of the family's residences) come immediately to mind as buildings whose artistic programs and iconographic details reflect, in various degrees, Medicean tastes and ambitions, we may initially not realize that the great Florentine cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore was also an institution influenced by Medici-inspired c ontrol and propaganda.

Increasingly throughout the fifteenth and into the sixteenth century, the Duomo, as it is best known, had become a civic as much as a religious center. John Paoletti has noted that "the most important religious site of the city was also a civic site," and that "as a civic site, the Duomo was also a contested space, mirroring the shifts in rulership that we normally locate too exclusively at the other end of the via Calzaiuoli at the Palazzo della Signoria" (649). While Paoletti, Shearman, Cox-Rearick, and others have traced effectively the impact of these "shifts in rulership" on much of the contemporary art, a significant body of material--the illuminated choirbooks of Santa Maria del Fiore--has been overlooked as part of this inquiry. If we are to consider Santa Maria del Fiore as a mirror of civic affairs and political forces and, as Trexler suggests, as a ritual space in which the Medici showed their authority (Trexler, 1978, 297), it becomes necessary to explore the influence that the distinguished Flore ntine family also had on the liturgical, musical, and artistic content of the service-books.

The restoration of Medicean rulership roughly corresponds to a period of intense cathedral manuscript production. Over the course of the nineteen years from 1508 to 1526, the administrative body of the cathedral--the Opera del Duomo--commissioned and financed fifteen graduals and eighteen antiphonaries. (3) These books--containing the chants for the celebration of the Mass (graduals) and of the Office (antiphonaries), and all preserved today at the Archivio dell'Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore--were lavishly illuminated by Monte di Giovanni (1448-1532/33) and Frate Eustachio (Tommaso di Baldassarre di Tommaso, 1473-1555), two of the most distinguished contemporary Florentine miniaturists. (4) The following seven choirbooks from this extensive campaign are recognizably Medicean in their artistic and, in one notable case, in their liturgical and musical content:

* AOSMF Cod. B n. 26--Antiphonary (after 1512): Proprium de Tempore from Christmas to the vigil of Epiphany;

* AOSMF Cod. C n. 11--Antiphonary (ca. 1515-19): (5) Proprium de Tempore from Epiphany to the Saturday before Septuagesima Sunday;

* AOSMF Cod.E.2n. 7--Gradual (ca. 1518-19): (6) Proprium de Tempore from Holy Thursday to Ascension;

* AOSMF Cod. F.2 n. 12--Gradual (ca. 1519): (7) Proprium de Tempore from Ascension to the Eighth Sunday after Pentecost;

* AOSMF Cod. K.2 L.2 n. 10--Gradual/Antiphonary (ca. 1515-19): (8) Mass Ordinary and Common of Vespers;

* AOSMF Cod. M n. 25--Antiphonary (ca. 1513-26): (9) Proprium Sanctorum from St. Agatha (5 February) to St. Zenobius (25 May);

* AOSMF Cod. Rn. 13--Gradual (ca. 1513-19): (10) Masses for the Common of the Saints and Dedication of the Church.

In an effort to unveil the rich Medicean symbolism and the overt and covert propagandistic messages they contain, each is examined over the course of this study.


The first question is whether the eminent Florentine family exercised a direct influence on the iconographic details of these manuscripts. The documentary evidence seems clear on this point. Nowhere do we find even minimal traces of the Medici's role in the production, financing, or design of the lavish books. Who, then, would have been responsible for the decisions concerning the details of the manuscripts' artistic content?

It may be helpful here to consider the issue as it relates to the production of another body of civically and politically inspired art, the ephemeral structures created for the Florentine entry of Giovanni de' Medici as Pope Leo X. His sumptuous ingresso on 30 November 1515, day of St. Andrew, was an event of spectacular proportions and of great symbolic significance. (11) Aimed at honoring the pope but, at the same time, at manifesting a solid political relationship between Florence and Rome, (12) the streets and squares of Florence were punctuated by grandiose and elaborate temporary structures--twelve triumphal arches and five symbolic monuments--each carrying a vivid allegorical and political message. In her thorough study of Leo X's ingresso, Ilaria Ciseri addresses the complex and crucial issue of the commission and design of these structures. While she considers the role played by some individuals and by several civic and administrative institutions--the pope's sister-in-law (Alfonsina Orsini) and the Opera del Duomo, among them--she ultimately concludes that the iconographic programs displayed by the ephemeral structures were in great part the direct creative product of the most experienced artists. (13) In the case of the choirbooks, Ciseri's argument could be extended to include the illuminators responsible for the adornment of the manuscripts. Indeed, if anyone were to be entrusted with such artistic freedom, it certainly would have been Monte di Giovanni, an artist whose illuminations embellish six of the seven choirbooks discussed in the present study and who, by 1512, had a long-standing association with the Medici. (14) While Monte di Giovanni must have been at some liberty in designing his illuminations, the more symbolically-rich iconographic details of his painted pages were likely the result of the explicit wish of a higher authority. The canons of Santa Maria del Fiore may have played a significant role. Even a quick perusal of the list of cathedral canons in the early years of the restoratio n reveals the striking incidence of men associated directly with the Medici, especially in their position as members of Leo X's papal court. (15) A detailed examination of these canons' role in the affairs of the cathedral and, more specifically, of their possible role in the creation of the Medici-inspired choirbooks is a task made very difficult, if not impossible, by the lack of pertinent documentary evidence. For the purposes of the present study, it is helpful to outline some of the information collected by Salvino Salvini in his landmark Catalogo cronologico (1782) of the Florentine cathedral canons: (16)

* Leonardo di Guasparri di Niccodemo Spinelli (canon 1484-1531): secret chamberlain of Leo X;

* Bernardo di Michelozzo di Bartolomeo Michelozzi (canon 1489-1516): secret chamberlain and referendary of Leo X;

* Lorenzo di Averardo di Antonio Serrisrori (canon 1491-1525): familiar, commensalis, and chamberlain of Leo X;

* Andrea di Giovanni Battista di Dino Buondelmonti (canon 1493-1532, then archbishop of Florence): familiar, commensalis, chamberlain, and squire of Leo X;

* Amerigo di Bernardo di Leonardo de' Medici (canon 1497-1541): familiar and secret chamberlain of Leo X;

* Antonio di Alessandro di Antonio Pucci (canon 1497-15 18?): ambassador of Leo X;

* Leonardo di Piero di Niccolaio Dan (canon 1498-1527): vicar general of Florence; chamberlain of Leo X;

* Giovanni di Francesco di Antonio della Luna (canon 1506-37): familiar of cardinal Giovanni de' Medici; vicar general of Florence;

* lacopo di Francesco Girolami (canon 1506-55): chamberlain of Leo X; (17)

* Guido di Antonio di Giuliano de' Medici (canon 1506-32): familiar and secret chamberlain of Leo X;

* Andrea Puerari di Cremona (canon 1509- ?): chamberlain of Leo X;

* Aldieri [=Alterio] di Carlo Aldighieri Biliotti Tornabelli (canon 1509-28): apostolic prorhonotary of cardinal Giovanni de' Medici; familiar, domestic prelate, and majordomo of Leo X; (18)

* Giuliano di Guglielmo di Antonio de' Pazzi (canon 1510-17): cousin of Leo X.

As familiars, commensales, chamberlains, domestic prelates, majordomi, prothonotaries, squires, and ambassadors of Giovanni de' Medici (either as cardinal or Pope Leo X), (19) these canons enjoyed considerable authority: not only did they have direct access to the man they served, but they were also in a position of power within the hierarchy of the Florentine ecciesia maior. In 4 this context, it is not a stretch of the imagination to envision their possible influence on the visual, liturgical, and musical contents of the cathedral choirbooks.

As we shall see, the antiphonaries and graduals of Santa Maria del Fiore include illuminations that are clearly Medicean in their iconographic details. These served a double function: most evidently, they were meant to pay tribute to the members of the eminent Florentine family. At the same time, they were recognized as effective tools of propaganda and designed as books whose artistic apparatus and liturgical/musical content had the potential to convey the powerful political themes central to the period of restoration. In order to achieve this second objective, however, the codices needed to be viewed nor merely by the cathedral choirboys and clergymen entrusted with the singing of the chants, but by a wider audience. How was this accomplished?

A cathedral document dated 21 June 1513 provides a helpful clue, as we read that "three beautiful books are lent to Domenico di Giovanni Parigi, cartolaio [stationer], that is the evangeliary, epistolary, and missal, for display at the feast of St. John the Baptist." (20) Furthermore, an earlier but similar cathedral document dated 20 June 1491 states that four "antiphonaries" and an evangeliary are lent to Domenico di Giovanni Parigi "through the entire day 22 of the current month [June]." (21) While in this case no reference is made to the feast of Sr. John the Baptist, we can infer that the five codices, like those specified in the 1513 document, were given to the cartolaio for the same purpose of display at the feast of the city's patron saint. The liturgical manuscripts mentioned in these two documents can be identified as evangeliary BML Edili 115 (1466), episrolary BML Edili 112 (1500), missal BML Edili 109 (1493), anriphonary BML Edili 148 (ca. 1445-78), and graduals BML Edili 149-51 (ca. 1445-78), un doubtedly seven of the most lavish service-books created for the cathedral in the latter part of the Quattrocento. (22)

The day of St. John the Baptist, officially observed in the church calendar on 24 June, was in Florence a feast of unparalleled proportions whose celebration extended for several days, each with its own particular rituals and pageants. (23) The 21st of June was marked by the mostra (exhibition), during which local merchants "ostentatiously show their things in the more frequented places of the city. For almost all the artisans and those with warehouses who do business in such places put whatever precious things they have outside if they have such things... for the greater honor of the city; and perhaps for greater profit." (24) It is most likely that the books lent to Domenico Parigi in 1491 and 1513 were exhibited as part of the cartolaio's own display at the mostra. While we may initially be surprised by the seemingly bold decision to grant these invaluable codices to a merchant for display in the less protected environment outside the church, we must keep in mind, however, that the books' exhibition at the mostra guaranteed their being admired by the populace at large. What might first appear as a gratuitous act on the part of the operai (the head administrators of the Opera del Duomo) was, in reality, a clever and effective way of showing off the cathedral's wealth and prestige, not within the traditional setting of the church vessel, but in the more public environment of the Florentine citizenry. (25)

Despite the lack of direct evidence attesting to the display, other than during the service, of the post-1512, Medici-inspired choirbooks, the two documents shed light on the general attitude toward the liturgical manuscripts of Santa Maria del Fiore. The service-books were objects of considerable prestige and of tremendous pride and their display must have been encouraged, even actively promoted, on more than one occasion during the year.


Gradual Cod. R n. 13 serves as an impressive tribute to the Medici. Right from the manuscript's opening folio, in a border surrounding the beginning of the Mass for St. Zenobius--first bishop of Florence--we see the Medici coat of arms surmounted by the papal keys and tiara and, directly below, the word "Leonem" inscribed in gold letters (Fig. 1). (26) The illuminated initial S encloses St. Zenobius flanked by his deacons Eugene and Crescentius. Although they are badly damaged, it is still possible to detect two banners carried by the deacons, the red cross of the People of Florence on the left and the lily of the City on the right.

The manuscript also includes a stunning example of commemorative iconography. The beginning of the Mass for the Dedication of the Church (fol. 88r) is marked by an illumination showing the interior of Santa Maria del Fiore with Pope Leo X before the choir, followed by a cardinal, possibly his cousin Giulio de' Medici (Fig. 2). The pope, whose name is inscribed in the gold border at the bottom of the illumination, is depicted with a magnifying lens in his left hand, an object that, due to his extreme nearsightedness, he was known to carry regularly. (27) Santa Maria del Fiore was one of the sites visited during Leo X's formal ingresso of 30 November 1515. Upon his arrival at Santa Maria del Fiore, the pope entered the church and walked on a raised platform down the nave and to the choir. (28) The depiction in gradual Cod. R n. 13 was likely created as a visual record of this event.

Documentary evidence suggests that the illuminations were executed by Monte di Giovanni between 1 July 1515 and the end of June 1519. (29) However, the visual details recorded in the illumination depicting the pope's entry into Santa Maria del Fiore seem to indicate that this page was created after the pope's visit, as a way to commemorate the sumptuous event.

It is also important to note that the pope's procession through the cathedral was in no way related to the feast of the Dedication of the Church with which the illumination is associated in the gradual. (30) This fact suggests that the desire to capture visually the grand moment of the pope's entrance into Santa Maria del Fiore and to preserve its memory were so strong as to impose themselves on the traditional iconography of the Dedication of the Church. (31) It also hints at a deeper theme, the association between the Medici and the cathedral in the years of the restoration, a subject explored later.

Entering the city on the day of St. Andrew, the beginning of the liturgical year, may have been carefully planned and aimed at underscoring the theme of renewal: a new Golden Age for the Medici dynasty and a new beginning for the city of Florence. Also interesting in this manuscript is the strong association between Leo X and St. Zenobius. The gradual is recorded as "il libro di San Zanobi" in the payment books of the Opera del Duomo. (32) The fact that this particular gradual was chosen to preserve such vivid Medicean imagery is indeed significant. The presence of the Medici coat of arms and the inscription "Leonem" on a page marking the beginning of the Mass for St. Zenobius is certainly striking. The Sr. Zenobius portrayed in this manuscript is not so much the founder of Florentine episcopal power, but rather a figure bestowed with civic authority. His association here with the banners of the City and the People transforms his role to that of a saint with the ability to intercede on behalf of Florence and its citizens.


Another cathedral choirbook, Cod. K.2 L.2 n. 10, also preserves an illumination of the interior of Santa Maria del Fiore (fol. 1r; Fig. 3) (33) Despite considerable damage, it is nevertheless possible to identify a group of singers reading from a service-book. (34) In the background is a view of the choir of the cathedral surmounted by a large two-tiered structure. The bottom level - which appears to rest on the choir itself- displays a series of Medici coats of arms and of painted saints, possibly the twelve apostles. Although badly faded, a sequence of lit torches is also visible directly above the saints. The other tier of the structure - which seems to be suspended, perhaps hanging from the dome - shows a row of Leo X's papal insignia. The level of detail provided, the depiction of four celebrants at the high altar within the choir, and the fact that the illumination marks the Kyrie of the Mass Ordinary lead us to conclude that this particular view of the cathedral is the visual record of a specific celeb ration of Mass. (35) The prominent display of Leo's shields points to an occasion during the pope's Florentine visit. Over the course of the sojourn in his native city, (36) Leo celebrated two Masses at Santa Maria del Fiore, one on Christmas day and the other on Ash Wednesday (on 6 February that year). (37) The illumination of Cod. K.2 L.2 n. 10 is likely a depiction of the Christmas Mass. In fact, several eyewitnesses to the celebration report that the interior of Santa Maria del Fiore was embellished with the same elaborate adornments used for the papal ingresso of 30 November. The structure above the choir is described as "a multi-tiered canopy," (38) and as having "circles of hangings on four levels." (39) In his account of the services at the cathedral on Christmas eve and Christmas day, Bartolomeo Masi provides us with further details:

on the 24th [of December], [Leo X] came to Vespers in Santa Maria del Fiore, and here he celebrated a solemn Vespers. Torches of white wax, each weighing three libre according to what was said, were lit throughout the church and remained lit from the beginning to the end of Vespers. It is estimated that there were a thousand or more torches. The whole church was full of these torches, that is the galleries that are inside this church . . . and also the entire choir was full [of torches], so that it appeared as one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen. The church was also decked with hangings and adorned in the same way it was when he [the pope] entered Florence the first time. And later, on the 25th, which was the morning of Christmas, the Pontiff came again to Santa Maria del Fiore and here celebrated the last Mass, since on this morning it is customary in all churches to celebrate three Masses. . . . The Pontiff himself celebrated this last Mass; and there were all the cardinals and all the archbis hops and bishops; and at this Mass all the above mentioned torches were lit, as they were the day before at Vespers. (40)

The multi-tiered structure above the choir and the multitude of torches were the central and most prominent decorative elements of that Christmas day Mass, and those same details were captured by Monte di Giovanni in his illumination. (41)


The most lavish examples of Medici-inspired art in the choirbooks of Santa Maria del Fiore are found in antiphonary Cod. C n. 11. Unlike the codices already discussed, documentary evidence suggests that this manuscript was written and notated as early as March 1515, before the pope's Florentine entry. (42) Although archival records do not provide any specific information on the book's decoration, it is possible that Monte di Giovanni's work on this manuscript is reflected in a bill submitted to the Opera del Duomo on 17 November 1515, just days before Leo X's arrival. (43)

The most impressive feature of this choirbook is the illuminated page marking the first responsory of Matins for the feast of the Epiphany (fol. 4v; Fig. 4). (44) The chief element to catch the viewer's eye is the painted border at the bottom of the page. Two lions, a lioness, and a bear are depicted with five golden balls inside an enclosed space. The shields of the City and of the People of Florence hang from two laurel branches, one cut, the other flowering.

The laurel, or lauro, not only alludes onomatopoeically to Lorenzo, but is also one of the heraldic devices adopted by "il Magnifico." (45) At the same time, the flowering laurel branch, known as the broncone, was the symbol used by the contemporary ruler of Florence, Lorenzo II "ii Giovane" (1492-1519), grandson of Lorenzo ii Magnifico and nephew of Leo X. (46) The association between the young Lorenzo and the flowering laurel was first made evident during the festivities for the 1513 carnival season. On that occasion, the young Lorenzo chose the broncone as the device of his company. The theme of renewal was most explicit in the allegorical performances of 6 February, and especially in the seventh trionfo, the final float of the Compagnia del Broncone. (47) It represented the Return of the Golden Age and was decorated with dry laurel branches putting forth new leaves. The fact that the broncone was first adopted by the older Lorenzo during his own first public appearance as princeps urbis during the carniva l of 1469 reinforced the parallel and the efficacy of the device. (48) The presence on this illuminated page of two bronconi, one cut and the other verdant, thus underscores the theme of Medicean renewal, the return of a Golden Age, and the presence in Florence of a new Lorenzo, the legitimate heir of the Magnifico. (49)

The bear, the orso, is likely an allusion to the Orsini, a prominent Roman family related to the Medici by marriage through Clarice Orsini (1450-88), wife of Lorenzo il Magnifico and mother of the pope, and Alfonsina Orsini (1472-1520), widow of Lorenzo's son Piero (1472-1503) and Leo's sister-in-law. The wordplay ursa-orsa-Orsini was exploited in the period of the restoration. In the pageantry surrounding Giuliano's 1513 Capitoline investiture, for example, Giuliano and Leo's Roman mother, Glance Orsini, was personified in a quasi-dramatic scene. In her introductory speech, Clarice states: "I have just now come down from the starry sky, from that more sublime region where the Bear (Orsa) upholds the [North] Pole." (50) The association between Clarice Orsini and the constellation of Ursa Major is also found in contemporary laudatory poems. In a 1515 poem by Antonio Nerli (d. 1550) praising the ancestry of Lorenzo il Giovane we read: 'As the Laurel [Lorenzo] was justly created from Ursine stock, so he is also deservedly begotten from the Medici. One derives its name from the celestial Bear (Vrsa), the other takes its name from the Phoeban art [of healing]" (51)

The lions carry a double reference. On the one hand they are a quintessential Florentine emblem, the marzocchi--authentic lions that over the course of the Quartrocento became important symbols of civic power and independence. (52) At the same time, however, these leoni allude to Leone X. The double reference was also exploited in one of the celebratory monuments created for Leo's Florentine ingresso. In describing a large structure placed in the Piazza Santa Trinita and built to resemble the Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome, a chronicler reports the presence of a significant inscription: "In the frieze of which [structure] were letters, which basically meant that this city is under the most fortunate protection of two Lions, and of two Giovannis, intending the heavenly Baptist and the terrestrial de' Medici." (53) The reference to the two Giovannis is also carried out visually by the iconography on this choirbook page. The illuminated initial H marking the beginning of the chant text encloses a scene of the Bapti sm of Christ. On the left is a small gathering of spectators among which, standing behind some angels, is Giovanni de' Medici portrayed as Leo X. The presence of both Giovanni de' Medici and John the Baptist within the confines of this initial probably would have resonated with special meaning in the eyes of contemporary viewers. Like Leo's entrata itself, aimed at underscoring the unity between Rome and Florence, this chant book page, too, is rich with signifiers of the special relationship between the two cities: the Roman Orsini and the Florentine Medici, the Roman lion (Leo X) and the Florentine lion (the marzocco) . (54)

The balls, or palle, are the fundamental components of the Medici coat of arms. (55) However, unlike the more customary red palle of the shield, these balls are golden, thus referring quite literally to the porno d'oro, or orange tree, a device adopted by Cosimo ii Vecchio (1389-1464) as the primary vegerarive symbol ofMedici regeneration. In Tuscany, the sour orange was known as the mala medica, which offered an appealing wordplay on the name Medici. Furthermore, the mala medica was identified with the medicinal golden fruit of the garden of the Hesperides, the mala aurea. (56) The mala medica-mala aurea-palle as a whole stood for immortality, the return of the Golden Age, and Medici virtue. The visual relationship between the palle and the four animals in the antiphonary border adds to the overall understanding of this painted page. Taking into account the primary dedicatee of this choirbook--Pope Leo X himself--the two lions, the lioness, and the bear may be considered as symbolizing Leo's closest relativ es and those members of the family with political authority. Among several possible interpretations, we can propose the following reading:

From left to right

Lioness = Alfonsina Orsini (1472-1520)--widow of Piero de' Medici (1472-1503), Leo's sister-in-law

Lion (resting) = Lorenzo II "il Giovane" de' Medici (1492-1519)--Leo's nephew

Lion (standing) = Lorenzo "il Magnifico" de' Medici (1449-92)--Leo's father

Bear = Glance Orsini (1450-88)--wife of Lorenzo il Magnifico, Leo's mother

In the context of this reading, the free-standing palla toward the left of the border is possibly a symbol of Leo's brother Piero, who had died in 1503 and whose widow, Alfonsina, played an important role in contemporary Florentine politics.

The overall interpretation of this manuscript border is further supported by other visual details. The particular stance of the beasts, for example, is probably significant. The standing lion and bear--interpreted here as Leo's parents Lorenzo and Clarice--are depicted with their right paws over their respective palla. This particular posture may be aimed at delivering the message that post-restoration Florence is firmly grounded on the foundations laid by Leo's mother and father. On the other hand, the lion to the left is depicted resting with his palla firmly in the grasp of both paws, a pose that may have been designed to contrast a widespread sentiment in the years immediately following the election of Leo X. In fact, there was concern among members of the regime that the Medici, now that they had acquired the papacy, held Florence in little esteem" (Butters, 220-21). The lion's pose in the illuminated border is one of control, but also one of comfort; the intended message is that Florence is now confiden tly and securely in the grip of Leo's nephew Lorenzo il Giovane. (57)

Compared to the other three beasts, the lioness is somewhat less prominent. She is placed behind the left lion, and her palla, partly obscured, is positioned between her front legs. As a signifier of Piero's widow and Leo's sister-in-law, the artist may have wanted to show her relative position of lesser power, but also to communicate the presence in Florence of an influential woman. As the young Lorenzo's mother, Aifonsina was instrumental in the advancement of her son's political career. (58) Moreover, Alfonsina was an active patron of the arts and one of the chief organizers of Leo X's ingresso, a fact that might even suggest her possible role--albeit indirect--in the iconographic program of this illuminated page. (59)

The deeper message of the entire page is revealed only when considering the text of the chant with which the initial is associated: "Hodie in lordane bapticato Domino aperti sunt celi et sicut columba super eum spiritus mansit et vox parris intonuit: Hic est filius meus dilectus in quo mihi bene complacui" (fols. 4v-6r; Today when the Lord was baptized in the Jordan the heavens were opened and the Spirit descended upon him like a dove and the voice of the Father resounded: "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased"). This text, derived from the Biblical account of the Baptism of Christ,60 had special significance for Leo X. One of the triumphal arches marking the path of his Florentine ingresso included an image of Leo's father Lorenzo and was inscribed with the words pronounced by God at the baptism of His Son--"Hic est filius meus dilectus"--the same words found in the responsory chant. One contemporary writer reports that, upon viewing the arch with the image of his father and the Latin inscript ion, the pope was moved to tears: "Then he [Leo X] came to San Felice in Piazza, where he found the second arch, where there was the image of Lorenzo his father with a motto that read Hic est filius meus dilectus, which, having been viewed and read by His Holiness, he was seen crying a good deal." (61) The rich symbolism of fol. 4v in antiphonary Cod. C n. 11 must have been plainly evident. In the illuminated initial, as on the triumphal arch, the words of God resonate with special meaning, as they carry a double reference. When associated with the image of Lorenzo iI Magnifico on the arch and with the overall Medici symbolism on the painted page, they become, in essence, words uttered by Leo's illustrious father. In an act aimed at establishing the continuity of the Medici dynasty; it is Lorenzo who figuratively, and perhaps even somewhat blasphemously, introduces his "beloved son" to his people. As vicar of Christ, Leo's triumphal entry into Florence is thus to be viewed as parallel to Christ's triumphal en try into Jerusalem. (62) The image of the Baptism also underscores the theme of renewal that the Medici actively sought during the years of restoration. What is more, the emphasis given to the Hic est filius meus text in both the triumphal arch of San Felice and in antiphonary Cod. C n. 11 would seem to indicate some level of coordination between the overseer of Leo's entrata -- perhaps the Opera del Duomo itself, or, as suggested by Shearman, Jacopo Nardi -- and Monte di Giovanni, both seemingly concerned with creating a unified program that extended onto the choirbooks.

Adding to the already complex reading of this antiphonary page is the significance for the Medici of the feast of the Epiphany. According to Dale Kent, the cult of the Magi provided the Medici with "a perfect metaphor for the spiritual journey of the wealthy and powerful toward true devotion, the submission of the kings of the earth to the supreme authority of the word of God, incarnate in his Son" (305). (63) Probably in reverence for this feast, 6 January was also the date when Lorenzo il Magnifico was baptized and when he celebrated his birthday, postponed from its actual date of 1 January. (64)

Another portrait of Leo X appears later in the same choirbook, enclosed in an initial D marking the beginning of Vespers of the second Sunday after Epiphany (fol. 110r). (65) The rich Medici symbolism, the two portraits of the pope, and the connection with the inscription on the triumphal arch at San Felice in Piazza seem to indicate that this choirbook was crafted specifically for Leo's visit. This particular antiphonary, which is liturgically appropriate for the period from Epiphany to the sixth Sunday after Epiphany, would have been used in 1516 for church services between 6 and 19 January. (66)


The association between the Medici and the cathedral is a recurrent theme in the choirbooks created after the Medici restoration of 1512. In this case, the favored subject is not Leo X, but his father Lorenzo ii Magnifico, who is depicted in three manuscript illuminations by Monte di Giovanni. He is seen in antiphonary Cod. B n. 26 (initial E, fol. 113r; Fig. 5) as one of the spectators to the Circumcision of Christ; (67) in gradual Cod. E.2 n. 7 (initial C, fol. 124r) among some singers; and in gradual Cod. F.2 n. 12 (initial S, fol. 28r; Fig. 6) among the apostles in an initial depicting the scene of Pentecost. (68) In both antiphonary Cod. B n. 26 and gradual Cod. P.2 n. 12, Lorenzo is inserted as a witness to the holy event which is set inside a church. Although not specifically the interior of Santa Maria del Fiore, this type of iconography might underscore Lorenzo's role in the activities of the cathedral. In a recent study, F. William Kent has shed new and meaningful light on the extent of Lorenzo's in volvement in the affairs of Santa Maria del Fiore. Lorenzo was forcibly behind numerous artistic projects, to the extent that we can speak, in Kent's words, of Lorenzo's "long, measured, ascent at the Duomo" (367). The desire to commemorate "il Magnifico" became one of the Medici propagandists' central preoccupations in the years following the restoration. The tendency to glorify Lorenzo and to preserve his memory is also detected in the repertory of some post-restoration manuscripts containing polyphonic musical compositions. A good example is provided by MS II. I. 232 of the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale of Florence which, among nearly seventy sacred works, also preserves Henricus Isaac's (ca. 1450/55-1517) funeral motets, Quis dabit capiti meo aquam and Quis dabitpacem, both written for the death of Lorenzo il Magnifico (1492) 69 The presence of these Laurentian motets in a manuscript dated 1516-21 is, in Cummings' words, "entirely consistent with the circumstances of Florentine politics in the second deca de of the sixteenth century" (1983, 289). Like the Nazionale manuscript, the three cathedral chant books preserving the portraits of Lorenzo are intended to commemorate the Magnifico. They also show that post-restoration Florence was "in the grasp of the past, and of political and religious interests... [for which] the past was useful" (Cummings, 1983, 289).


Reclaiming Santa Maria del Fiore was one of the Medici ambitions upon their return to power in 1512. Over the course of the fifteenth century, the cathedral had become a Medicean and particularly a Laurenrian church, often serving as the setting for important political and civic events. (70) As previously discussed, the cathedral's graduals and antiphonaries produced after the Medici restoration include depictions of the family's most distinguished member, Lorenzo il Magnifico, as well as portraits of Pope Leo X and detailed representations of the events that connected him directly with the cathedral: his entry into Santa Maria del Fiore on 30 November (antiphonary Cod. R n. 13) and the celebration of Christmas Mass in 1515 (gradual/antiphonary Cod. K.2 L.2 n. 10). Medici authority is also displayed in the service-books through the presence of the family coat of arms and of prominent Medicean symbols: the broncone, the palle, the lion (as a signifier of Leo X), and the bear (as a signifier of the Orsini family). It would appear, therefore, that the choirbooks were used as a tool in the Medici's subtle yet intended control of Santa Maria del Fiore.

While manuscript illumination had the ability to convey the theme of political authority in a rather direct manner, the creation of a new Office for St. Zenobius served as a less immediate, but in some ways as an even more powerful instrument of Medici assertion; as such, St. Zenobius served as another important vehicle in the campaign to reclaim Santa Maria del Fiore. In a climate of initial self-consciousness and political uncertainty; the new Office for St. Zenobius, as designed and composed by those serving the Medici and seeking to ingratiate themselves with them, established a presence for the Medici at the very core of the cathedral: its liturgy; After 1512, Medici control of Santa Maria del Fiore thus took on a new form, much more subtle in nature than that exercised by the previous generation. While from the late 1 460s until his death in 1492 Lorenzo il Magnifico displayed his influence by taking an active role in the administrative bodies of Santa Maria del Fiore (i.e., in the Opera del Duomo, in t he Arte della Lana, and as a provveditore of the cathedral),71 the generation of Giuliano and Giulio de' Medici had to achieve its influence through more discreet means, through the insinuation of a saintly surrogate.

Born in the fourth century; St. Zenobius is traditionally regarded as the first bishop of Florence. Special authority was bestowed upon him by Sr. Ambrose, one of the four Fathers of the Latin Church and a friend of Zenobius. It was, in fact, during his visit to Florence in 393-94 that the great Milanese bishop promoted the election of Zenobius to the Florentine episcopate. (72) In the late ninth century, Zenobius' remains were translated from the church of San Lorenzo to the cathedral, where they are preserved today; (73) It is important to realize that St. Zenobius was and still is the titular saint of the most prestigious of the fifteen tribune chapels of Santa Maria del Fiore, the one at the head of the central tribune, directly behind the high altar. The close historical-religious connection and the privileged relationship between Sr. Zenobius and the cathedral thus received an appropriate physical representation within the architectural space.

As the cults of other saints waned through time, that of Zenobius was rekindled and sustained throughout the centuries. Its endurance is due in great part to the Florentines' ability to reinvent his role and to transform his very nature, often to suit the needs and to carry out the agendas of ecclesiastical and civic leaders. At times of military conflict and international political strife, Zenobius' fundamental position as pater ecclesiae was extended to that of defensor civitatis. Moreover, with the consolidation of a strong civic identity in the early fifteenth century, the cult of Zenobius became endowed with remarkable civic and Republican connotations.

The liturgy for St. Zenobius is systematically found in the service-books of the cathedral. The most important and interesting development took place in the context of the Medici restoration. An entirely new and lengthy Office in his honor is preserved in Cod. M n. 25, an antiphonary that includes the Offices for the Proper of the Saints from the feast of St. Agatha (5 February) to the feast of Sr. Zenobius (25 May). (74) The manuscript carries the date 1526 in two of its illuminations. (75) While the artistic apparatus was certainly completed by that time, documentary evidence suggests that the copying of the text and of the music was executed as early as 1513, when the operai assigned Filippo Polidori to write, rule, and notate the pages of three books, including a Proper of the Saints. (76)

The Office is comprised of a total of thirty-five chants for Vespers, Matins, and Lauds. Unlike earlier Offices for St. Zenobius, the prose texts of these chants appear not to be derived from any of the known hagiographic sources. (77) While the texts are newly written, approximately one-third of the melodies partially allude to or are borrowed entirely from other chants within the repertory of Santa Maria del Fiore (see the Appendix). As many as five of the borrowed chants are responsory verses for Matins. (78) This is to be expected, as responsory verses are based on standard formulas (known as tones) comprised of common melodic patterns. Nevertheless, the fact that the creator of these chants turned to those specific tones is significant. For example, the first responsory verse of the first nocturn of Matins (0 magna convinx) is based on the first tone, and as such it is very similar to other first-tone verses. When examining the overall chant repertory of the cathedral, however, 0 magna convinx appears to be closest and, indeed, practically identical to the melody of only two other chants, that of the responsory verses Fundata estdomus domini and Hec estdomus domini for the feast of the Dedication of the Church (Fig. 7). (79) Despite its formulaic nature, O magna con vinx would undoubtedly have resounded with the chants associated with the Dedication of the Church, thus establishing an interesting and, as we shall see, a vivid allusive connection.

The chants with identifiable derivations are drawn from seven feasts. Besides those taken, as usual, from the Common of Confessors, (80) we also find allusions to chants for Ascension and Pentecost, for the Nativity (8 September), Annunciation (25 March), and Immaculate Conception of the Virgin (8 December), and for the Dedication of the Church (25 March). The feasts of Ascension and Pentecost are associated with St. Zenobius through the period of the liturgical year they all have in common. In particular years, in fact, these movable feasts can fall on 25 May, the dies natalis of St. Zenobius.

The Virgin Mary is the titular saint of the cathedral. The feasts in her honor present musically in the Office for Sr. Zenobius carry great meaning in Florentine religious history and, especially, in the history of Santa Maria del Fiore. The feast of the Immaculate Conception was formally instituted by Pope Sixtus IV in 1473. At the cathedral of Florence, however, it appears to have been celebrated as a simple feast as early as the fourteenth century; (81) by 1493 it was listed with the rank of duplex major with Octave. (82) The feasts of the Nativity and Annunciation of the Virgin are even more closely associated with the cathedral. Indeed, Santa Maria del Fiore was founded on 8 September 1296, day of the Nativity, and it was consecrated on 25 March 1436, day of the Annunciation. In remembrance of that event, 25 March was also the day when the annual feast of the Dedication of the Church was observed. Finally, the feast of the Dedication of the Church is referred to in the Office for Sr. Zenobius through no fewer than five musical allusions. Based on the evidence presented thus far, we can say that the new Office for St. Zenobius was likely introduced in the cathedral liturgy around 1513, when it was copied in antiphonary Cod. M n. 25. (83) While the origin of the thirty-five chant texts is still unknown, some of the melodies are derived more or less directly from other chants of special significance in the liturgical tradition of the cathedral. Most evident and frequent among these allusions are the melodies for the Dedication of the Church and for the Annunciation of the Virgin. All of this leads us to consider some crucial questions. Why was the liturgy for St. Zenobius modified at this time? What motivated the creation of the new Office and what forces inspired its particular, allusive nature?

Immediately upon his election as archbishop of Florence in 1513, Giulio de' Medici opted for an episcopal ingresso, an official and lavish entry into Florence that, according to tradition, had been introduced in local practice by Sr. Zenobius himself. Giulio had chosen to enter the city on the feast of St. Lawrence, 10 August, but was not received by the Florentines until 15 August, the feast of the Assumption of the Virgin. The significance of this delay must have been evident to Giulio and his contemporaries. An entrance on the feast of St. Lawrence, a Medici saint, would have underscored Giulio's political lineage. Instead, the archbishop's entry on a Marian feast day clearly established his religious power and the ties with his episcopal seat, Santa Maria del Fiore. (84)

On his way to the cathedral, archbishop Giulio paid homage to the site where, according to local belief, St. Zenobius had performed one of his most celebrated miracles, the revival of a dead boy. A contemporary account, prepared by the notary of the archbishop, provides the following description:

When he [archbishop Giulio] had arrived at the marble stone placed as a marker where the blessed Zenobius, Florentine bishop, wonderfully roused and revived a dead boy, after the Versicle Ora pro nobis Beate Zenobi had been sung by the priest and after the Response Ut digni efficiamurpromissionibus Christi, the Most Reverend Archbishop similarly sang and, singing, said the prayer of Saint Zenobius, and afterward proceeded as far as the angolo de' Pazzi and there, turning toward the cathedral, he arrived at the aforementioned Florentine cathedral church. He entered by the cathedral's central door. While the archbishop was there, he celebrated a solemn Mass, singing. (85)

The visit to the holy site, the chanting of liturgical texts, the recitation of prayers, and the specific route taken on the way to the cathedral must have carried special significance. As Cummings has pointed our, St. Zenobius had particular meaning for Giulio. His full name, as entered in his baptismal record, was "Giulio et Zanobi," the latter name probably chosen as a result of Giulio's birth on 26 May, the day after the feast of Sr. Zenobius. (86) The course of the processional path, however, gives further weight to the event. The chronicler specifically writes that Giulio "proceeded as far as the angolo de' Pazzi," before turning toward the cathedral. While this path was part of the traditional route of the episcopal ingresso, (87) it was also likely to carry particular meaning in the context of the Medici restoration. The Angolo de' Pazzi takes its name from the palace of the Pazzi family, located on the corner of Via del Proconsolo and Borgo degli Albizi. The palace was more commonly known as the Pala zzo della Congiura--the Palace of the Conspiracy--as it was the residence of Francesco de' Pazzi, one of the men who, thirty-five years earlier, had conspired against the Medici in an attempt to overthrow their government. On 26 April 1478, the Sunday before Ascension, Francesco de' Pazzi and his followers assaulted Lorenzo and Giuliano de' Medici while attending High Mass in Santa Maria del Fiore. The attack took place "near the old sacristy toward the altar of St. Zenobius." (88) While Giuliano was killed instantly, Lorenzo, wounded only superficially, escaped the fury of his attackers by fleeing into the cathedral's north sacristy. (89) It was directly below Giuliano da Maiano's wooden image of St. Zenobius--the central figure of the intarsia panels on the east wall of the sacristy (Fig. 8)--that Lorenzo escaped death. (90) In an act cast with great symbolic meaning, Giullo paid his respects not only to the founder of Florentine ecclesiastical authority, but also to that saint by whose altar his father Giu liano had lost his life and below whose gaze his uncle Lorenzo had found refuge from the fury of the attackers. The particular sequence of stations marking Archbishop Giulio's procession into Florence is thus highly symbolic: Sr. Zenobius, the Pazzi, the cathedral, and the celebration of Mass were all part of his formal ingresso, just as they were all central to the events of that infamous 26 April.

Following the Pazzi Conspiracy the cult of St. Zenobius assumed special significance for the Medici. As Melinda Hegarry has shown, Lorenzo de' Medici was directly involved in the commission and design of the Sala dei Gigli in the Palazzo della Signoria, the seat of the Florentine government. (91) The central and dominant image in that great hall is that of St. Zenobius, flanked by his deacons Eugene and Crescenrius (Fig. 9). The work was commissioned in 1482 by the Opera di Palazzo, of which Lorenzo was the overseer, or maestro. The fresco, executed by Domenico Ghirlandaio, is comprised of various iconographic components. Above the scene of St. Zenobius are the Virgin and Child, while to the left of St. Zenobius' throne is a view of Santa Maria del Fiore. Framing the entire scene are two marzocchi lions, (92) the ultimate symbols of Florentine civic authority, whose function is underscored by the banners they carry that of the Florentine People on the left, and that of the City on the right. (93) Scholars ha ve convincingly argued that this fresco served as a public ex-voto, (94) as Lorenzo's grand token of gratitude toward a saint whose intercession had saved his life and, by extension, the fate of the Medici dynasty. Indeed, in what must have been viewed by their enemies as an ironic twist, the Pazzi conspiracy was in many ways a turning point in the history of Medicean supremacy, as it actually helped to consolidate the family's political power in the city.

Lorenzo's interest in St. Zenobius was not limited to the fresco in the Palazzo della Signoria. In 1491 he was directly and forcibly behind a new campaign for the decoration of the saint's chapel in the cathedral. (95) The commission was for a large mosaic--Lorenzo's preferred medium--to cover the entire chapel. With the expulsion of the Medici in 1494, however, the ambitious project was abandoned. Only in 1520, in the midst of the Medici restoration, was the commission renewed, although the project was never brought to completion.

The renewal of Laurentian commissions was not restricted to this case. In 1519, the Opera del Duomo recommissioned the effigy of Lorenzo's music tutor, the great organist Antonio Squarcialupi (1416-80) (96) The marble bust had originally been created by Lorenzo's order soon after the organist's death, and included a Latin epitaph written by Lorenzo himself. Following the Medicean expulsion in 1494, however, the effigy was removed from the cathedral and the wall where the image once stood was "flattened out as if [the image] had never been there." (97) As a contemporary chronicler explains, this act was carried out "because the hatred of the citizens toward Lorenzo [was extended] toward his friends." (98) The reinstatement of the effigy must have served, therefore, as a deliberate effort to reestablish Medicean control during the period of restoration.

The new Office for St. Zenobius of antiphonary Cod. M n. 25 can only be effectively understood in light of the climate of early Cinquecento Florence. In other words, the presence of this extensive office and, more specifically, the allusions to chants in honor of the Virgin and for the feast of the Dedication of the Church were all highly significant within the context of the Medici restoration. The association among St. Zenobius, the Virgin, and the cathedral is readily recognizable in Ghirlandaio's central fresco in the Sala dei Gigli. The intarsia panel of St. Zenobius in the cathedral's north sacristy is similarly associated with the Virgin, whose Annunciation is depicted directly above the image of Sr. Zenobius, (99) and with the cathedral, within whose vessel the image is found. By relying so vividly on chants for the Virgin and for the Dedication of the Church, the new Office for St. Zenobius also carries out the Zenobius-Virgin-cathedral association.

Another element of interest is the visual allusion between the intarsia panel of the cathedral's north sacristy and the manuscript illumination marking the first responsory of Matins (fol. 130v). Even within the physical confines of the initial, the illuminator, Frate Eustachio, reproduced the shell niche seen in the wood panel (Fig. 10). While the shell motif was fashionable in Florence in the 1460s at the time of the panel's creation, by 1526, the likely date of the illumination, it had become an archaic decorative device. The allusion may thus be a conscious effort to make reference to that same St. Zenobius under whose gaze Lorenzo and the Medici dynasty had found their salvation.

The text of the Office offers some further evidence for a connection between St. Zenobius and the Medici. While most of the chants simply recount the life and praise the virtues of the great bishop, the hymn for Matins (Linguis favete) concludes with a significant exaltation: "Great is the glorious one [Zenobius] who has redeemed us, the exiles, leading us all the way to the stars with the Father and the nourishing Spirit." (100) The message is rather explicit: through Zenobius' intervention, the Medici--the "exiles"--have reached the pinnacle of their glory. The theme of exile and return was central to the years of the restoration, especially in the festivities surrounding the 1514 feast of St. John the Baptist. In that year's Festa di San Giovanni, the Florentine historian Jacopo Nardi (1476 - ca. 1563) designed an elaborate allegory, the Triumph of Camillus, which was performed on 23 June in the Piazza della Signoira. (101) As the translator of Livy's Decades, Nardi was well aware of the rich parallel betw een the Roman hero Marcus Furius Camillus and the Medici. Camillus was described by Livy as "a man of singular excellence ... whether one thinks of the yearning of his countrymen who called on him in his absence ... or of the success with which on being restored to his country he restored the country itself at the same time; ... [he] was deemed worthy of being named next after Romulus, as Rome's second founder." (102) In the message of the propagandists, the Medici, like Camillus, came back from exile to restore, to "rejuvenate" their homeland. In Nardi's own words, "Like the laurel which never loses its leaves, / History and poetry are ever green." (103) The underlying message of Nardi's masquerade appears to have been readily grasped by contemporaries. Lorenzo ii Giovane himself reported that the trionfo "in fact refers to nothing if not the expulsion of the House of Medici and to the subsequent revocation." (104)

Who might have been behind the creation of the new Office for St. Zenobius? Despite the lack of documentary evidence, the canons of the cathedral were likely to be the promoters, perhaps even the creators of the new liturgy for St. Zenobius. A likely candidate might have been Iacopo di Francesco di Zanobi Girolami, canon of the cathedral from 1506 to his death in 1555 and chamberlain to Leo X. (105) His close association with the pope and his membership in a family that claimed to be directly related to the great Florentine bishop might suggest that Iacopo played an active role in the composition of the extensive Office. (106) The Girolami family had traditionally been involved in the creation of new or revised vitae of the saint. In 1477, Iacopo's own father, Francesco, commissioned a life of St. Zenobius from Alessandro da Verrazzano. (107)

Zenobius was the ideal saint to carry out the subtle insinuation of Medici control. (108) His vita echoed with the nature of the Medici dynasty and with the topoi central to the restoration. Just as Zenobius was endowed with regenerative powers manifested most vividly by the miracle of the flowering elm, so the Medici had the ability to reestablish themselves, a theme that was portrayed most vividly by means of the flowering laurel, the broncone. Moreover, just as Zenobius possessed the miraculous power to revive--the resurrection of the dead child is the best example--the Medici, too, were intended by their propagandists to have been viewed by the citizenry-at-large as the restorers of Florentine fortune and prosperity. The Carnival of 1513 was especially rich in this type of imagery. In the Return of the Golden Age--the final trionfo put on by Lorenzo il Giovane's Compagnia del Broncone--a naked and gilded young boy emerged from the rusted armor of a dead man. (109)

In this spirit of restoration and in the climate of a new Medicean Golden Age, the chapel of St. Zenobius in the cathedral had become, figuratively, a Medici shrine. Following the Pazzi conspiracy of 1478, that space was symbolically appropriated by Lorenzo, as exemplified by his role in the campaign for the mosaic decoration of the saint's chapel. The Pazzi conspiracy and the subsequent devotion to St. Zenobius legitimized the Medici appropriation of that holy space and ascertained their power and control over the cathedral. It is also within this context that we can better understand the association between St. Zenobius, the Medici, and the feast of the Dedication of the Church in gradual Cod. R n. 13 examined earlier. Unlike the more covert insinuation in antiphonary Cod. M n. 25, the connection between the three is manifested visually and more directly in the gradual: the opening page preserving the Mass for St. Zenobius and its relationship with the symbols of Leo X's ecclesiastical power--his papal tia ra, the keys of St. Peter--and his temporal power--the Medici coat of arms; the association between the depiction of Leo's entry in Santa Maria del Fiore and the feast of the Dedication of the Church.

The new Office for Sr. Zenobius in antiphonary Cod. M n. 25 must be understood on various levels. On the most basic and evident level it is simply an Office for the great Florentine saint, the pater ecclesiae and the founder of local ecclesiastical authority. The particular illumination with which the Office is embellished, however, hints at a deeper meaning, as it makes reference to the intarsia image of Zenobius in the cathedral's north sacristy where, in 1478, Lorenzo found refuge from his would-be murderers. An even deeper layer of meaning is offered by the music, and specifically by the allusions to chants for the Dedication of the Church and in honor of the Virgin. Within this context, the Office for St. Zenobius becomes, ultimately, a celebration of the cathedral, the resting place of Sr. Zenobius, a temple dedicated to the Virgin, and the place where Lorenzo and, consequently, the entire Medici dynasty were rescued from their demise. These themes must have acquired new significance in the spirit of p ost- 1512 Florence, in the context of the Medici restoration. The new Office for St. Zenobius thus served as an instrument of subtle control in the hands of the Medici propagandists and provided a way to establish the supremacy of a family still self-conscious in its regained position of power and prestige. Only when unveiling these various levels of meaning can we fully understand the deeper motivation for the creation of the new Office. Like so much of the art in Medici Florence, so often visibly and readily recognizable as an instrument of propaganda, this Office also served to consolidate Medici authority and to affirm their control of Santa Maria del Fiore.

Despite no direct involvement in the commission or finance of the cathedral choirbooks, the Medici were, in various ways, "present" in as many as seven of these lavish instruments of worship. Whether through the portraits of Lorenzo il Magnifico or of his son Giovanni (the newly-elected Pope Leo X), or through the symbols of Medici power (their coat of arms and political devices), or by means of the liturgy of a saint whose very nature was effectively appropriated and transformed to suit the political agenda of the eminent family, the Medici entered the arena of the painted service-book. While in some cases their presence is celebratory or commemorative, in other examples it seems to be aimed at establishing control of the cathedral, a church that over the course of the fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries had become remarkably civic in nature and function. Like other prominent Florentine monuments--the Palazzo della Signoria or the church of San Lorenzo, to name only a couple--the Duomo, too, was graduall y but emphatically established as a site of Medicean authority a goal that was carried out largely by means of the painted pages of the city's most magnificent service-books: the graduals and antiphonaries of Santa Maria del Fiore.

 Antiphonary AOSMF Cod. M n.
Office for St. Zenobius - ca.
 1513 (fols. 120r-147r)

Liturg. Textual incipt


Ant. 1 Salve perpetuum

Ant. 2 Ente divinis

Ant. 3 Ablutus limpha

Ant. 4 Iurgia derides

Ant. 5 Tequem sequi

H Pontifex vigens meritis

Ant./Mag. Natalem celebrant


Inv. Cenobio dominum

H Linguis favete

Ant. 1.1 Quis tua gesta pater

Ant. 1.2 Eloquiunque tuis dabitur

Ant. 1.3 Morborum curas genus

Rx 1.1 Cenobi cum vitam

v./Rx 1.1 O magna convinx

Rx 1.2 Non tua divitie

v./Rx 1.2 Anixa mens cupidi

Rx 1.3 Edes te paucis

v./Rx 1.3 Deo facit se

Ant. 2.1 Extinctoque olim

Ant. 2.2 Das populis mores

Ant. 2.3 Denique sancte tuis

Rx 2.1 Hic quem tibi

v./Rx 2.1 Funiculus vix

Rx 2.2 At postquam

v./Rx 2.2 Mortem futuram

Rx 2.3 Multa patos populo

v./Rx 2.3 Beatus primum

Ant. 3.1 Sancte ater stabunt

Ant. 3.2 Posteritas que tuos

Ant. 3.3 Per te perpetuum

Rx 3.1 Prodigia in numeris

v./Rx 3.1 Valet pietas ad

Rx 3.3 Nosque tui fisicum

v./Rx 3.3 Salutis una est via


Ant./Ben. Nostris carentes

 Antiphonary AOSMF Cod. M n. 25
 Office for St. Zenobius - ca. 1513
 (fols. 120r-147r)

Liturg. Musical incipit


Ant. 1 Sal-ve per - pe - tu - um pa- tri - e

Ant. 2 En- te di - vi - nis

Ant. 3 [No identifiable derivation]

Ant. 4 [No identifiable derivation]

Ant. 5 [No identifiable derivation]

H Pon-ti-fex vi-gens me-ri-tis

Ant./Mag. (No identifiable deriavation)

Inv. Ce-no-bi-o

H Lin-gu-is fa-ve-te

Ant. 1.1 [No identifiable derivation]

Ant. 1.2 [No identifiable derivation]

Ant. 1.3 [No identifiable derivation]

Rx 1.1 [No identifiable derivation]

v./Rx 1.1 O ma-gna

Rx 1.2 [No identifiable derivation]

v./Rx 1.2 [No identifiable derivation]

Rx 1.3 [No identifiable derivation]

v./Rx 1.3 [No identifiable derivation]

Ant. 2.1 [No identifiable derivation]

Ant. 2.2 [No identifiable derivation]

Ant. 2.3 [No identifiable derivation]

Rx 2.1 [No identifiable derivation]

v./Rx 2.1 Fu - ni - cu - lus vix

Rx 2.2 [No identifiable derivation]

v./Rx 2.2 [No identifiable derivation]

Rx 2.3 [No identifiable derivation]

v./Rx 2.3 Be - a - tus pri - mum

Ant. 3.1 [No identifiable derivation]

Ant. 3.2 [No identifiable derivation]

Ant. 3.3 [No identifiable derivation]

Rx 3.1 [No identifiable derivation]

v./Rx 3.1 Va - let pi - e -- tas

Rx 3.3 Nos - que tu -- i

v./Rx 3.3 Sa - lu -- tis


Ant./Ben. No - stris ca - ren - tes

 Melodic concordances drawn from the chant
 of Santa Maria del Fiore

Liturg. Liturgical derivation
posit. of the concordance


Ant. 1 Conception B.M.V. V-Ant.
 Dedication of the Church M-Ant.

Ant. 2 Dedication of the Church V, L-Ant.

Ant. 3

Ant. 4

Ant. 5

H Common of confessors V-H


Inv. Ascension of Christ M-Inv.
 Penecost M-Inv.

H Ascension of Christ V-H

Ant. 1.1

Ant. 1.2

Ant. 1.3

Rx 1.1

v./Rx 1.1 Dedication of the Church M-v./Rx
 Dedication of the Church M-v./Rx

Rx 1.2

v./Rx 1.2

Rx 1.3

v./Rx 1.3

Ant. 2.1

Ant. 2.2

Ant. 2.3

Rx 2.1

v./Rx 2.1 Annunciation B.M.V. M-v.R/x

Rx 2.2

v./Rx 2.2

Rx 2.3

v./Rx 2.3 Annunciation B.M.V. M-v./Rx

Ant. 3.1

Ant. 3.2

Ant. 3.3

Rx 3.1

v./Rx 3.1 Ascension of Christ M-v./Rx
 Annunciation B.M.V. M-v./Rx

Rx 3.3 Dedication of the Church M-Rx

v./Rx 3.3 Dedication of the Church M-v./Rx
 Dedication of the Church M-v./Rx


Ant./Ben. Nativity B.M.V. V-Ant.

 Melodic concordances drawn from
 the chant repertory
 of Santa Maria del Fiore

Liturg. Textual incipit
posit. of the concordance


Ant. 1 Conceptio recolitur sancte Marie
 Non est hic aliud nisi domus Dei

Ant. 2 Bene fundata est domus domini

Ant. 3

Ant. 4

Ant. 5

H Iste confessor domini colentes


Inv. Alleluya christum dominum
 Alleluya spiritus domini

H Salutis humane sator Jesu

Ant. 1.1

Ant. 1.2

Ant. 1.3

Rx 1.1

v./Rx 1.1 Fundata est domus domini
 Hec est domus domini firmiter

Rx 1.2

v./Rx 1.2

Rx 1.3

v./Rx 1.3

Ant. 2.1

Ant. 2.2

Ant. 2.3

Rx 2.1

v./Rx 2.1 Paries quidem filium et

Rx 2.2

v./Rx 2.2

Rx 2.3

v./Rx 2.3 Gloria patri et filio

Ant. 3.1

Ant. 3.2

Ant. 3.3

Rx 3.1

v./Rx 3.1 Elevata est magnificentia tua
 Quo modo fiet istud quoniam

Rx 3.3 Orantibus in loco isto dimitte

v./Rx 3.3 Dornine si conversus fuerit
 Qui regis Israel intende


Ant./Ben. Veni sponsa Christi accipe


Ant. Antiphon
Ben. Benedictus
H Hymn
Inv. Invitatory
L Lauds
M Matins
Mag. Magnificat
Rx Responsory
v. Verse
V Vespers

* The research for this study was made possible by a grant from the Pennsylvania State University Institute for the Arts and Humanities, which provided the support for research in Florence in the summer of 2001. The final draft of the article was written in the first months of my year as a 2002-03 Lila Wallace Reader's Digest Foundation Fellow at Villa I Tatti - the Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies in Florence, The section of this article devoted to antiphonary Cod. M n. 25 ("Antiphonary Cod. M n. 25: A New Office for St. Zenobius") was first presented at the Sixty-Seventh Annual Meeting of the American Musicological Society in Atlanta, Georgia (18 November2001). I am particularly indebted to Margaret Haines, Jessie Ann Owens, Sherry Roush, and Craig Wright for reading early drafts of this study and for providing valuable comments and suggestions. Moreover, I thankfully acknowledge the constructive criticism of the anonymous readers who reviewed the manuscript for RQ. Salvatore Campor eale, David Crawford, Lorenzo Fabbri, Paul B. Harvey, Yolanda Plumley, Ruth Steiner, and the staff of the Biblioteca and Fototeca Berenson at Villa I Tatti also have my gratitude for their expert assistance and support. The following abbreviations are used in this article: AOSMF Archivio dell'Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore, Florence; ASF = Archivio di Stato, Florence; BML = Biblioteca Medicea Laurenxiana, Florence. All translations are my own unless otherwise noted.

(1.) For a comprehensive discussion of the complexities and nuances of the Medici's political restoration see Stephens, chap. 3 and Butters, chap. 8.

(2.) Cox-Rearick, 6. The themes of dynasty and destiny are discussed most extensively by Cox-Rearick.

(3.) Graduals are liturgical books (or service-books) containing the texts and the chants for the Mass; antiphonaries contain the texts and the chants for the Divine Office (e.g. Vespers, Matins). The extensive history of cathedral manuscript production is examined in Tacconi, 1997, 70-76, Tacconi, 1999, 9-29, and especially in Tacconi, forthcoming, chap. 1.

(4.) As the author of the illuminations for at least eighteen extant cathedral service-books, Monte di Giovanni's artistic production for Santa Maria del Fiore was by far the most extensive of the seventeen illuminators associated with the cathedral in the fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries. His work can be identified in the following manuscripts: missal BML Edili 109; epistolary BML Edili 112; breviary (manual) BML Edili 119; antiphonaries AOSMF Codd. B n. 26, C n. 11, D n. 8, N n. 6, On. 23, P n. 29; graduals ACSMF Codd. A.2 n. 15, B.2 n. 9, C.2 n. 5, E.2 n. 7, F.2 n. 12, G.2 n. 16, Rn. 13, S n. 14; antiphonary/gradual AOSMF Cod. K.2 L.2 n. 10. Frate Eustachio's production, although more limited, was the second most extensive, numbering at least eight choirbooks for the cathedral: antiphonaries AOSMF Codd. An. 31, B n. 26, En. 24, F n. 30, G n. 22, M n. 25, 0 n. 23, P n. 29(?); gradual AOSMF Cod. D.2 n. 21. The activities of both artists are well documented through the archival material of the Opera de l Duomo; the documents have been published in Poggi, ed., docc. 1730-1844 passim. For biographical sketches and a list of relevant documents concerning these illuminators, see Levi D'Ancona, 199-211, 246-50. For attributions to these artists of specific books and illuminations see Milanesi, 193-210 passim, 260-65.

(5.) See Poggi, ed., doe. 1814.

(6.) Ibid., docc. 1806-07, 1809, 1814.

(7.) Ibid., doc. 1814.

(8.) Ibid., doc. 1807.

(9.) Ibid., doc. 1796.

(10.) Ibid., docc. 1796, 1807.

(11.) "The most detailed and extensive examinations of Leo X's ingresso are provided by Shearman, 1975, Cummings, 1992, chap. 5, and Ciseri.

(12.) The theme of unity between Florence and Rome had already been symbolized allegorically in the decorative apparatus of a temporary theater built on the Capitoline in Rome as the setting for Giuliano de' Medici's 1513 Investiture, a ceremony that bestowed Roman citizenship upon him and his nephew Lorenzo II "il Giovane" (1492-1519). Lorenzo, however, was absent from the ceremony See Cummings, 1992, chap. 4 passim, and 194, n. 1.

(13.) Ciseri, 40-42. Among others, Ciseri cites Domenico and Ridolfo Ghirlandaio, Andrea del Sarto, Baccio Bandinelli, and Iacopo Sansovino as some of these artists. Shearman, 1975, 139, n. 9, proposes Jacopo Nardi as the possible iconographer entrusted with the overall project.

(14.) In 1491, Monte di Giovanni was one of the artists commissioned with the mosasc decoration of the chapel of Sr. Zenobius in the cathedral, a project whose chief sponsor was Loreozo de' Medici. See Haines, 1994, 44-45 and F. W. Kent, 366.

(15.) On the influence of the Florentines and the Medici on office-holding in the papal court see Partner, 163-65.

(16.) The information listed below is taken from Salvini, 60, 62-64, 67-68, 70-71.

(17.) Iacopo Girolami is discussed below in connection with his possible role in the creation of an Office for St. Zenobius in antiphonary AOSMF Cod. M n. 25.

(18.) On Alterio Biliotti, see Ferrajoli, 210-15.

(19.) For a discussion of these tides and roles within the papal court, see Ojetti.

(20.) "Operarii deliberaverunt quod comodentur tres libri pulchri Dominico Joannis de Parisiis cartholario, videlicet Evangelistarium Epistolarium et Missalem pro fienda mostra in festivitate sancti Joannis Baptiste"; in Poggi, ed., doc. 1795 (AOSMF 11.2, 11, fol. 130r). The activity of Domenico Parigi as cartolaio of the Opera del Duomo is documented from 1491 to 1519; see Ibid., docc. 1728. 1732, 1795, 1804, 1812, 1815.

(21.) Item quod comodentur quatruor antiphonaria sacristie et ecclesie et liber coopertus ex argento qui dicitur evangelistarius Dominico de Patigis eorum officii cartolario per totum diem 22 presenris mensis; in Poggi, ed., doc. 1728 (AOSMF, 11.2. 7, fol. 10 lv). I am grateful to Margaret Haines and Salvatore Camporeale for their assistance with the translation and interpretation of this and the document quoted above.

(22.) Evangeliaries, epistolaries, and missals are service-books containing the texts to be said at Mass, arranged according to the liturgical year. More specifically, evangeliaries include the passages (pericopes) from the four Gospels that are used for the Gospel reading; epistolaries contain the Epistles and other passages from the Old and New Testaments that are read before the Gospel; missals preserve most of the texts said at Mass with the exception of the readings (Epistles, Gospel), which are normally indicated by an incipit. The term "antifanario" is used generically in the cathedral documents with reference to both antiphonaries and graduals. For additional information on these manuscripts see Tacconi, 1999, 142-46, 149-51, 152-53, 157-73, 228-29; see also Fabbri and Tacconi, eds., 193-94, 196-99, 217-25. For color reproductions of some of the most impressive illuminations, see 182 (Edili 112); 62-63, 178-80 (Edili 109); 204 (Edili 148); 205 (Edili 149); 60, 64,202-03 (Edili 150); 59,204 (Edili 151) .

(23.) On the celebration of the feast of St. John the Baptist in Florence see Trexler, 1980, 240-63, and the various contemporary accounts published by Guasti.

(24.) From a 1475 Latin letter by the Florentine notary Piero Gennini to Pirrino Amerino, published in Mancini, 220-27. The passage quoted (223) appears in English translation in Trexler, 1980, 247.

(25.) While Domenico Parigi provided the parchment leaves for at least one choirbook in 1517 (gradual AOSMF Cod. D.2 n. 21; see Poggi, ed., docc. 1804, 1812), there is no evidence of any direct association with the production of the books he borrowed in 1491 and 1513. Unlike other merchants who displayed their own handiwork at the mostra, the cartolaio of the Opera del Duomo exhibited objects belonging to the institution for which he worked.

(26.) This illuminated page, as most in this book, was severely damaged by the Florentine flood of 4 November 1966. The discussion of the illuminations is thus aided by the descriptions provided by Milanesi, 204-05.

(27.) Langedijk, 1:43. The magnifying lens is also depicted in the famous 1518 portrait by Raphael, now at the Galleria degli Uffizi in Florence.

(28.) The sixteenth-century chronicler Agostino Lapini gives a detailed account of the event: "arrivato [il Papa] a S. Maria del Fiore, scavalco che eta sotto un bellissimo baldacehino, e se n'ando su per uno palco che cominciava dalla porta del mezzo di detta chiesa, er arrivava per insino in coro" (90). See also Ciseri, 117-18.

(29.) See Poggi, ed., doc. 1807 (AOSMF, II. 4. 6, fol. 129v).

(30.) The feast of the Dedication of the Church is an annual liturgical celebration commemorating the consecration of the church. Santa Maria del Fiore observed the feast on 25 March, the Annunciation, but also the date of its consecration in 1436.

(31.) The most conventional representation is that of a bishop consecrating a church. Two of the most noteworthy examples among the service-books of Santa Maria del Fiore depict the actual 1436 consecration by Pope Eugene IV. These illuminations are preserved in BML Edili 151 (fol. 7v), a gradual produced between ca. 1445 and 1478, and in BML Edili 109 (fol. 347r), a missal executed in 1493. For color reproductions of these illuminations see Fabbri and Tacconi, eds., 59 and 180 (plate 61).

(32.) "Conto di Monte miniatore datoci. A presso satra conto datoci Monte di Giovanni, miniatore, di V libri antifanali miniatoci da di 1 di Luglio 1515 a tutto Giugno 1519 I'libro di san Zanobi"; in Poggi, ed., doc. 1807 (AOSMF, II. 4. 6, Lois. 129v-30r).

(33.) This choirbook is composite in nature, consisting ofboth the Ordinary of the Mass and the Common of Vespers. The illumination on fol. iris endosed in an initial K, which marks the beginning ("Kyrie") of the Mass Ordinary

(34.) Like Cod. R n. 13, this manuscript was also damaged by the 1966 flood. This illumination, however, was deteriorated earlier. In a 1958 inventory; the illumination is described as follows: "L'interno del Duomo di Firenze. Alcuni cappellani e chierici cantano dinanzi ad un leggio. In basso lo stemma dell'Opera (miniatura deteriorata)." The typescript inventory by the former archivist Enzo Serresoldi, "inventario dell, Archivio Musicale dell'Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore," is part of the reference section of the Archivio dell'Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore. The choirbooks are listed in the first section of the inventory (3-29).

(35.) The Mass Ordinary includes the chants of the Mass with invariable texts, namely "Kyrie," "Gloria," "Credo," "Sanctus," and "Agnus Dci."

(36.) Except fot a diplomatic trip to Bologna from 3-22 December 1515, the pope was in Florence continuously from 30 November 1515 to 19 February 1516. His activities are documented most fully in a letter by Buonarroto Buonartoti to his brother Michelangelo in Rome; in Buonarroti, 1:184-85.

(37.) Bonsignori, fols. 88r-v: "La mattina di Natale el Papa canto la messa nella cattedrale in ordine pontificale, con gran pompa et devotione di tutto il popolo. . . . La mattina della Cenere similmente fu messa pontificale in Santa Maria del Fiore, dove il Papa dette La centere"; in Ciseri, doc. XLII, 295.

(38.) Landucci, 356: "e padiglione di sopra con phi gradi."

(39.) Parenti, "Diario," fol. 122r: "sopra el choro erano cerchi di drappelloni in 4 gradi"; in Ciseri, doe. XLVI, 315. Masi, 169: "e con circuiti de drappelloni."

(40.) Ibid., 184: "a di xxiiij di detto, venne alvespro in santa Maria del Fiore, e quivi si cielebro un solenne Vespro, et acciesesi per tutta la chiesa falcole di ciera bianca di tre libre l'una, secondo che si dicieva, le quale stettono acciese da ch'el Vespro si comincio a per insino che fu finito; e stimasi che fussino mille Falcole o piu. Era pieno di dette falcole tutta la sopradetta chiesa, cioe tutti i ballatoi che sono drento in detta chiesa...; et ancora n'era pieno tutto el coro di detta chiesa, che pareva, a vedere, una delle piu bello cose ch'io vedessi mai; et ancora era parata tutta la chiesa di drappelloni, et ornata in quel modo medesimo ch'ella'era quando egli entro in Firenze la prima volta. E dipoi a di xxv di detto, che fu la matrina di Pasqua di Natale, el sopradetto Ponteficie, venne di nuovo a santa Maria del Fiore, e quivi celebro l'utima Messa, che in tal mattina s'usa cielebrare in tutte le chiese tre Messe ....La quale Messa utima disse el sopradetto Ponteficie propio; ed eronvi p arari tutti i cardinali e tutti gli arcivescovi e vescovi: e sterrano acciese, a detta Messa, tutte le sopradette falcole come stettono ci di dinanzi al Vespro."

(41.) The apparent absence of these details from the view of the cathedral interior in Cod. R n. 13 (fol. 88r; see Fig. 2) is probably due to a difference in perspective. The vantage point in that illumination is much closer to the choir, making it impossible to show the area above the choir.

(42.) A document dated 30 June 1519 states: "Da Don Filippo di Pulidoro, frate di Chamaldoli, nostro iscrittore de' nostri antifanali, de' avere addi 30 di Giugno 1519 per gl'infrascritti quinterni di charta pechora di nostre charte pechore e tutti iscritti c notati di chanto fighuraro per la nostra sagrestia... e quail quinterni dati per libri come appie si dira partichular- menre: ... Uno libro della befania di quinterni 14 monta, auto a di 14 di Marzo 1514/15"; in Poggi, ed., doc. 1814 (AOSME II. 4. 6, fol. 96r).

(43.) "Monte di Giovanni, miniatore, de' dare addi 17 di Novembre 15151. XXI p. sopra al suo conto che minia gli antifanali di duomo"; in Ibid., doc. 1801 (AOSMF, VII, 1.51, fol. 66r).

(44.) On the structure of Matins, seen. 78 below.

(45.) On this and other Medicean devices, see Ames-Lewis, 122-43.

(46.) On the significance of the laurel as a Medicean symbol, see Cox-Rearick, 17-23, and Bausi.

(47.) Incidentally, Jacopo Nardi, the possible overseer of Leo's 1515 entrata (seen. 13 above), was responsible for the compagnia's elaborate program. See Shearman, 1962, 478, and Cummings, 1992, 16, 18-19.

(48.) Bausi, 442.

(49.) Bartolomeo Cerretani, an eyewitness to the Carnival festivities, reports that "al popolo pareva che fussino tornati i tempi di Lorenzo Vecchio." Quoted in Shearman, 1962, 478; also see Bausi, 438 and 440.

(50.) "Io son hora dicesa dal stellante cielo, da quella parte piu sublime dove L'Orsa sostene il polo." Palliolo, 56; quoted in and translated by Cox-Rearick, 184.

(51.) Laurus ur Vrsina est merito de prole creatus: / De Medica est merito sic quoque genre satus. / Altera coelesri nomen deducit ab Vrsa, / Altera phoebea nomen ab arte trahit. Lauretum, 5; quoted in and translated by Cox-Rearick, 184. Antonio Nerli was a canon of Santa Maria del Fiore from 1504 to his death in 1550; see Salvini, 69.

(52.) The Florentine lions were kept in a cage within the Palazzo della Signoria and were exhibited during important civic events and processions.

(53.) Cerretani, fol. 38v: "nel fregio del quale erono lettere, che in sustanza significavano questa citta in protezione di due Leoni, et di due Giovanni felicissimamente riposarsi, per l'uno intendendo ii celeste Battista e per l'altro il terrestre de' Medici"; in Ciseri, doc. XLIV, 298. A similar description is also provided by Panciatichi; in Ciseri, doc. XIV, 223. For further discussion, see Shearman, 1975, 140, and Ciseri, 81.

(54.) As previously discussed, the theme of unity between Rome and Florence was also underscored in Giuliano de' Medici's Capitoline Investiture of 1513 (see n. 12 above). The lion figured prominently among the iconographic elements of the ephemeral Capitoline theater, while the constellation of Ursa Maior was mentioned in the quasi-dramatic scene portraying Glance Orsini (see n. 50 above). See Cummings, 1992, 53; Cox-Rearick, 184.

(55.) In her discussion of this border, Francesca Fumi Cambi Gado refers to this iconography as an example of "disarticulated heraldic representation" (234).

(56.) Cox-Rearick, 48. On the significance of the garden of the Hesperides in Medicean art see Ibid., chap. 6.

(57.) After a prolonged absence from Florence, Giuliano de' Medici resigned his position of control to his nephew Lorenzo ii Giovane, who took on the management of the regime in August 1513. See Butters, 223.

(58.) Reiss, 2001, 127.

(59.) On 4 November 1515, Leo X officially assigned Alfonsina Orsini the planning of his ingresso. The document is preserved in ASP, Archivio mediceo avanti il Principato, 105, 21; in Ciseri, doe. XXV, 248-49. Giseri provides further details on Alfonsina Orsini's role in the preparations for the pope's Florentine visit: 32-33; see also Reiss, 2001, 133-35, who examines in considerable detail Alfonsina's role as patron of the arts.

(60.) Luke 3:21-22; Mark 1:10-11; Matthew 3:16-17.

(61.) Cerretani, fol. 38v: Di poi se ne venne a San Felice in Piazza, dove trovo il secondo arco, dove era 1'immagine di Loteozo suo padre con un motto che diceva Hic est filius mcus dilectus, il che visto da sua Sanrita et letto fu veduto alquanro lacrimare; in Ciseri, doc. XLIV, 298. For further discussion, see Shearman, 1975, 145, n. 28.

(62.) Ibid., 146, n. 30.

(63.) Cosimo il Vecchio -- the paterfamilias of the Medici, honored upon his death with the title of pater patriae -- commissioned numerous works on this subject. The most famous was the freseo of the Procession of the Magi in the chapel of the Medici Palace, executed by Benozzo Gozzoli and completed around 1459. On the significance of this chapel and its iconography, see D. Kent, 305-28.

(64.) Cox-Rearick, 19, n. 18. and Trexier, 1978, 294.

(65.) A black-and-white reproduction is found in Fabbri and Tacconi, eds., 226. Another portrait of Leo X by Monte di Giovanni was executed on a large wax candle, which was donated to the pope on the occasion of the feast of the Purification of the Virgin --known as the candelaja -- on 2 February. A 1519 cathedral payment record states: "Per dipintura di uno ciero grosso per donare al papa per la candelaia fattovi istorie grande della putifichazione et papa Lione al naturale"; in Poggi, ed., doc. 1807 (AOSMP, 11.4. 6, fol. 130r). The candle was likely presented on the feast of the Purification in 1516.

(66.) The falling of Easter as early as 23 March that year resulted in only one Sunday between Epiphany and Sep tuagesima Sunday (20 January). Antiphonary AOSMF Cod. D n. 8 would have been the liturgically appropriate service-book for the period from Septuagesima Sunday to the Saturday before the first Sunday of Lent.

(67.) Lorenzo's birth on 1 January, the day of Circumcision, may have inspired his portrait in this illuminated initial.

(68.) See Langedjik, 2:1150-52; see also Garzelli, 1:316, 2:635.

(69.) Isaac belonged to Lorenzo's domestic circle of musicians and may have taught music to Lorenzo's sons Piero and Giovanni (the future Leo X). Strohm, 577.

(70.) See F. W Kent, 344.

(71.) See Ibid., passim.

(72.) Naldini, 24. The relationship between Sr. Zenobius and St. Ambrose was consciously emphasized in Florence in an attempt to stress and promulgate the honor of the city's ecclesiastical founding. This prominent preoccupation even led to the creation of a new hagiographic text, deliberately falsified in its spurious attribution to Simpliciano, the successor of Sr. Ambrose on the Milanese episcopal seat. Instead, it was written by thc Florentine clergy between the twelfth and the thirteenth centuries, as a way to re-elaborate and consolidate a local myth of origin. Benvenuti Papi, 128-29.

(73.) It was on that occasion that one of the saint's famous miracles took place. While being carried to the cathedral, St. Zenobius' casket accidentally struck a dead elm tree, which immediately flowered.

(74.) The Proper of the Saints is that section of a liturgical book that includes texts, and possibly chants, that are specific to a particular saint. The Common of the Saints, on the other hand, includes liturgical material for those saints without a complete individual office of their own (see n. 80 below).

(75.) Fol. ir: "A. DNI. MDXXVI"; fol. 4r--initial D enclosing the martyrdom of St. Agatha: in the inner margin is the date "MDXXVI."

(76.) "Operarii viso qualiter iamdiu fuerunt locati domno Philippo Polidori de Florentia, monaco in monasterio abbarie di Candegli licet absenti, tres libri ad scribendum, norandum et rigandum cartas pecudinas videlicet il proprio de' sancri il comune graduale et il comune antifanario"; in Poggi, ed., doc. 1796 (11 July 1513; AOSMF, II. 2. 10, fol. 131v). Other documentary evidence suggests that this protracted production phase was not unusual among the choirbooks of the cathedral. A similar case is offered by four choirbooks from the fifteenth century (BML Edili 148-51), whose execution was carried out over a period of approximately thirry-three years, from ca. 1445 to 1478. For further discussion see Fabbri and Tacconi, eds., 217.

(77.) See Acta Sanctorum, 49-69.

(78.) In secular use (i.e., in non-monastic churches), the Office of Matins, also known as the Night Office, is comprised of one, two, or three nocturns, depending on the solemnity of the feast. Each nocturn includes three psalm/antiphon pairs, three lessons, and three responsories. The responsories are comprised of two sections known as the respond--traditionally sung by the choir--and the verse--traditionally sung by a soloist.

(79.) Fundata est domus domini is the verse of the first responsory of the first nocturn; Hec est domus domini is the verse of the second responsory of the second nocturn.

(80.) The Common of Confessors includes the chants for those non-martyr male saints without a complete individual office.

(81.) This is evident in the kalendar of the fourteenth-century missal BML Edili 107.

(82.) Kalendar of missal BML Edili 109 (1493). In the ranking system of feasts, the rank of duplex major with Octave denotes the highest level of ceremony. It was assigned to the most important church festivals of the liturgical year, those that received a second celebration a week later (in the case of the feast of the Conception of the Virgin, the Octave was celebrated on 15 December). The feast of the Conception was listed with the rank of duplex minor beginning in the first half of the fifteenth century (kalendar of missal BML Edili 106--post 1427). The increasing importance of this feast in the liturgy of Santa Maria del Fiore is apparent, and is further exemplified by the establishment in the fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries of three well-endowed chaplaincies in honor of the Holy Conception. AOSMF, 1. 5. 1 includes a list of all the chaplaincies of the cathedral, specifying for each the exact location within Santa Maria del Fiore and the date of institution. Thus, regarding the three chaplaincie s in honor of the Immaculate Conception, we know the following: 1) founded in 1430 by Tommaso della Bordella, Canon of the cathedral, assigned to the high altar; 2) founded in 1488 by Bartolomen, head priest of Fiesole, assigned to the altar of the Virgin Mary and administered by the consuls of the Arte della Lana; 3) founded by Carlo Pittore da Loro (sixteenth century) and assigned to the high altar.

(83.) A 1506 breviary still preserves an earlier and entirely different version of the Office: BML Edili 119, fols. 15 1v-56v. For a comparative table listing the incipits of all liturgical items for the Office of St. Zenobius from the twelfth to the sixteenth centuries, see Tacconi, 1999, 312-15. On the dating of BML Edili 119, Ibid., 191-92.

(84.) Paoletti, 658.

(85.) The complete Latin text is preserved in the Bullettone of the Archivio Arcivescovile of Florence, published by Lami, 3:1759-62. The account is discussed by Reiss, 1992, 143-44; English translation by Cummings, 1992, 85-86.

(86.) Ibid., 209, n. 7.

(87.) The path is described in the "Instrumento del modo di fare l'Entrata del Vescovo in Firenze," the account of the entry of a bishop on 23 January 1385. Quoted in Mantini, 90-91.

(88.) Parenti, 1994, 18: "presso alla vecchia sagrestia di verso l'altare di san Zanobi"; in F. W. Kent, 344.

(89.) Giuliano was burned in the family church of San Lorenzo the following Thursday, on Ascension Day. See Lapini, 26.

(90.) Haines, 1994, 44; Wilson, 34.

(91.) Hegarty 264-85.

(92.) The lion on the right is partially obscured by a doorway added in 1589. See Rubinstein, 63, n. 161.

(93.) The iconographic similarity between this fresco and fol. 4v of antiphonary Cod. C n. 11 must not go unnoticed, as both feature the marzocchi and the two civic banners.

(94.) Haines, 1994, 44; Rubinstein, 62; Hegarty, 273.

(95.) Haines, 1994, 38-55.

(96) "Da un Memoriale del Cancelliere dell'Opera di Santa Maria del Fiore dal 1517 al 1527:(1519) Effigie di Maestro Antonio Squarcialupi si metra in detta Chiesa con ornamento da farsi in marmo, vicino alla statua di Giotto"; ASF, Carte Strozziane, II. 78, 98.

(97.) Parenti, 1994, 259-60: e rappianatosi el muro non altrimenti che Se mai stata non vi fussi; quoted in F. W Kent, 367.

(98.) Parenti, 1994, 259-60: perche 1'odio de' cittadini verso Lorenzo ... ctiam verso e' suoi amici; quoted in F. W. Kent, 367.

(99.) The most thorough discussion of the north sacristy's composition of inrarsia panels is provided by Haines, 1983, especially 161-73, where the author describes the design of the sacristy's east wall.

(100.) Ingens sit ille gloriosus qui nos redemit exules ducens ad usque sidera cum patre et almo spiritu (fol. 128v).

(101.) Cummings, 1992, 88. The date of the performance is reported by Landucci, 345: "E a di 23 detto, si fece otto difici begli e la sera altrettanti, quando trionfo Cammillo."

(102.) The passage is taken from Livy's Decades in Jacopo Nardi's own translation: fu huomo vnico ... o pel desiderio, che di lui hebbe la citta: laqual essendo suta presa ... o ver per la felicita: p[er] laqual restituito alla patria, esso la medesima patria seen restitui; ... fu giudicato degno d'esser dopo Romolo, chiamato il secondo edificatore della citta di Roma (fol. 102v). The English translation of the original Latin is quoted by Cummings, 1992, 89-90, and taken from Foster's ed., 359.

(103.) Jacopo Nardi, "Trionfo della fama e della gloria": perche come l'allor foglia non perde, / la storia e poesia sempre sta verde. English translation by Cox-Rearick, 36. The full canto is edited by Bruscagli, 1:74-76. See also Cummings, 1992, 91-92.

(104.) In a letter by Lotenzo to Francesco Pandolfini: che in facto non allude se non alla cacciata et dipoi alla revocatione della casa de' Medici. In Giorgetti, 236; English translation by Cummings, 1992, 90. As Cummings points out, "Lorenzo's implicit suggestion that the Medici, like Camillus, were recalled from exile is, of course, an idealized presentation of the historical reality; nonetheless, it was subsequently to find expression in the borders of the tapestries executed for the Sistine Chapel in the years immediately following" (90). On the theme of exile on the borders of Raphael's Sistine Chapel tapestries see Shearman, 1972, 85.

(105.) See Salvini, 70.

(106.) The Girolami's claim to descent and their patronage of St. Zenobius' cult is discussed most thoroughly in Cornelison, 437-48.

(107.) This vita, dated 25 May 1477, is a vernacular translation of the eleventh-century life of St. Zenobius by Lorenzo d'Amalfi (see Acta Sanctorum, 58-62). It is preserved at the Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale of Florence as MS Magl. 7. 1140, fols. 9r-32v, and has been edited by Nardi, 165-74. Two years earlier, another life of St. Zenobius, the vita by Clemente del Mazza (see Acta Sanctorum, 64-66), was commissioned by Francesco's brother, Filippo. See Cornelison, 447 and n. 52; Nardi, 151, 153-54.

(108.) Trexler refers to the way in which powerful men of the Renaissance cultivated the "links with particular divinities not only for their own material and spiritual benefit, but in order to increase their authority among their subjects, clients, or fellow citizens" (1978, 293).

(109.) Shearman, 1962, 478; Cummings, 1992, 18-19.


Acta Sanctorum quotquot toto orbe coluntur, vel a catholicis scriptoribus celebrantur quae ex latinis et graecis, aliarumque gentium antiquis monumentis, vol. Maii VI. 1688. Antwerp.

Ames-Lewis, Francis. 1979. "Early Medicean Devices." Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes 42:122-43.

Bausi, Francesco. 1992. "Il Broncone e la Fenice (morte e rinascita di Lorenzo de' Medici)." Archivio storico italiano 150:437-54.

Benvenuti Papi, Anna. 1988. Pastori di popolo: storie e leggende di vescovi e di citta nell'Italia medievale. Florence.

Bonsignori, Bonsignore. "Memorie dal 1489 al 1554." MS Magi. XIII. 93, Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale. Florence.

Bruscagli, Riccardo, ed. 1986. Trionfi e canti carnascialeschi toscani del Rinascimento. 2 vols. Rome.

Buonarroti, Michelangelo. 1965. Il carteggio di Michelangelo. Eds. Paola Barocehi and Renzo Ristori. 5 vols. Florence.

Butters, Humfrey C. 1985. Governors and Government in Early Sixteenth-Century Florence, 1502-1519. Oxford.

La Cattedrale e la Citta: Saggi sul Duomo di Firenze. Atti del Convegno Internazionale di Studi (Firenze, 16-21 giugno 1997). 2001. Ed. Timothy Verdon and Annalisa Innocenti. Florence.

Cerretani, Bartolomeo. "Sommario e estratto della sua storia scritta in dialogo." MS Magl. II. IV. 19, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana. Florence.

Ciseri, Ilaria. 1990, L'ingresso trionfale di Leone X in Firenze nel 1515. (Biblioteca Storica Toscana, 26.) Florence.

Cornelison, Sally J. 2002. "A French King and a Magic Ring: The Girolami and a Relic of St. Zenobius in Renaissance Florence." Renaissance Quarterly 55:434-69.

Cox-Rearick, Janet. 1984. Dynasty and Destiny in Medici Art. Princeton.

Cummings, Anthony. 1983. "A Florentine Sacred Repertory from the Medici Restoration." Acta musicologica 55:267-332.

-----. 1992. The Politicized Muse: Music for Medici Festivals, 1512-1537. Princeton.

Fabbri, Lorenzo and Marica Tacconi, eds, 1997. I libri del Duomo di Firenze. Codici liturgici e Biblioteca di Santa Maria del Fiore (secoli XI - XVI). Exhibition Catalog. Florence.

Ferrajoli, Alessandro. 1984. Il ruolo della Corte di Leone X (1514-1516). Ed. Vinceozo De Caprio. Rome. Originally published in Archivio storico della R. Societa Romana di Storia Patria 34-41 (1911-18).

Fumi Cambi Gado, Francesca. 1992. "Un esempio di raffigurazione araldica disarticolata: le palle medicee, i leoni fiorentini, il broncone di Lorenzo." In Consorterie politiche e mutamenti istituzionali in eta laurenziana, ed. Maria Augusta Morelli Timpanaro, er al., 234-35. Florence.

Garzelli, Annarosa. 1985. Miniatura fiorentina del Rinascimento, 1440-1525: un primo censimento. 2 vols. (Inventari e cataloghi toscani, 18-19.) Florence.

Giorgetti, A. 1881. "Lorenzo de' Medici, Duca d'Urbino, e Jacopo d'Appiano." Archivio storico italiano, 4th ser., 8:222-38, 305-25.

Guasti, Cesare. 1884. Le feste di S. Giovanni Batista in Firenze. Florence.

Haines, Margaret. 1983. The "Sacrestia delle Messe" of the Florentine Cathedral. Florence.

-----. 1994. "Il principio di 'mirabilissime cose': I mosaici per la volta della cappella di San Zanobi in Santa Maria del Fiore." In Marco Dezzi Bardeschi, et al., La difficile eredita: architettura a Firenze dalla Repubblica all 'assedio, 38-54. Florence.

Hegarty, Melinda. 1996. "Laurentian Patronage in the Palazzo Vecchio: The Frescoes of the Sala dei Gigli." The Art Bulletin 78:264-85.

"Instrumento del modo di fare l'Entrata del Vescovo in Firenze, estratto dal libro 21 di Capitoli delle Riformagioni." MS 167, Archivio di Stato. Florence.

Kent, Dale. 2000. Cosimo de' Medici and the Florentine Renaissance: The Patron's Oeuvre. New Haven.

Kent, Francis William. 2001. "Lorenzo de' Medici at the Duomo." In La Cattedrale e la Citta, 341-68.

Lami, Giovanni. 1758. Sanctae Ecclesiae Florentinae Monumenta. 3 vols. Florence.

Landucci, Luca. 1883. Diario florentino dal 1450 al 1516 continuato da un anonimo fino al 1542. Ed. lodoco del Badia. Florence.

Langedijk, Karla. 1981. The Portraits of the Medici, 15th-18th Centuries. 2 vols. Florence.

Lapini, Agostino. 1900. Diario florentino di Agostino Lapini dal 252 at 1596. Ed. Giuseppe Odoardo Corazzini. Florence.

Lauretum, sive carmina in laudem Laurentii Medicis. 1820. Ed. Domenico Moreni. Florence.

Levi D'Ancona, Mirella. 1962. Miniatura e miniatori a Firenze dal XIV al XVI secolo: documenti per la storia della miniatura. Florence.

Livy. 1924. Livy. Trans. Benjamin Oliver Foster. Vol. 3. London.

Mancini, Girolamo. 1909. "Il bel S. Giovanni e le feste patronali di Firenze descritte nel 1475 da Piero Cennini." Rivista d'arte 6:185-227.

Mantini, Silvia. 1995. Lo spazio sacro nella Firenze medicea. Transformazioni urbane e cerimoniali pubblici tra Quattrocento e Cinquecento. Florence.

Masi, Bartolomeo. 1906. Ricordanze di Bartolomeo Masi, calderaio florentino dal 1478 and 1526. Ed. Giuseppe Odoardo Corazzini. Florence.

Milanesi, Gaetano. 1850. Storia della miniatura italiana con documenti inediti. Florence.

Naldini, Mario. 1994. "Attivita pastorale di S. Ambrogio. Firenze e i codici della Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana." In La presenza di Sant'Ambrogio a Firenze, Convegno di studi ambrosiani (Florence, 9 March 1994), ed. Mario Naldini, 23-32. Florence.

Nardi, Carlo. 2001. "Un volgarizzamento quarrrocentesco della Vita di San Zanobi di Lorenzo di Amalfi (sec. XI)." In La Cattedrale e la Citta, 145-74.

Ojetti, Benedetto. 1912. "Roman Curia." The Catholic Encyclopedia, 13:147-54. London.

Palliolo, Paolo. 1969. "Narratione delli spectacoli celebrati in Campidoglio da Romani nel ricevere lo Magnifico Juliano et Laurentio di Medici per suoi patritii." In Fabrizio Cruciani, Il teatro del Campidoglio e le feste romane del 1513, 21-67. (Archivio del teatro italiano 2.) Milan.

Panciatichi, Gualtieri. 1516. Copia di una epistola di Gualtieri Panciatichi ciptadino Florentino nella Entrata di Papa Leone. Nella cipta di Firenze. Adi xxx di Novembre M.D.XV. Florence.

Paoletti, John T. 2001. "Cathedral and Town Hall: Twin Contested Sites of the Florentine Republic." In La Cattedrale e la Citta 629-67.

Parenti, Piero. "Diario d'istorie florentine dall'anno 1507 all'anno 1518." MS Magl. II. IV. 171, Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale. Florence.

_____. 1994. Storia florentina, I, 1476-78; 1492-96. Ed. Andrea Matucci. Florence.

Partner, Peter. 1990. The Pope's Men: The Papal Civil Service in the Renaissance. Oxford.

Poggi, Giovanni, ed., 1988. Il Duomo di Firenze. Documenti sulla decorazione della chiesa e del campanile tratti dall'ar chivio dell'Opera, vol. 2, ed. Margaret Haines. 1909. Reprint, Florence.

Reiss, Sheryl E. 1992. "Cardinal Giulio de' Medici as a Patron of Art, 1515-1523." Ph.D. diss., Princeton University.

-----.2001. "Widow, Mother, Patron of Art: Alfonsina Orsini de' Medici." In Beyond Isabella: Secular Women Patrons of Art in Renaissance Italy, ed. Sheryl E. Reiss and David G. Wilkins, 125-57. (Sixteenth Century Essays and Studies, 54.) Kirksville, Missouri.

Rubinstein, Nicolai. 1995. The Palazzo Vecchio, 1298-1532: Government, Architecture, and Imagery in the Civic Palace of the Florentine Republic. Oxford.

Salvini, Salvino. 1782. Catalogo cronologico de' canonici della chiesa metropolitana fiorentina. Florence.

Shearman, John. 1962. "Pontormo and Andrea del Sarto, 1513." The Burlington Magazine 104:478-83.

-----. 1972. Raphael's Cartoons in the Collection of Her Majesty the Queen and the Tapestries for the Sistine Chapel. London.

----- . 1975. "The Florentine Entrata of Leo X, 1515." Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes 38:136-54.

Stephens, John N. 1983. The Fall of the Florentine Republic, 1512-1530. Oxford.

Strohm, Reinhard. 2001. "Isaac, Henricus." The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 2nd ed., 12:576-90. London.

Tacconi, Marica. 1997. "'Secundum consuetudinem Romanae Curiae in Maiori Ecclesia florentina': I codici liturgici della Cartedrale di Firenze." Fabbri and Tacconi, eds., 65-78.

-----.1999. "Liturgy and Chant at the Cathedral of Florence: A Survey of the Pre-Tridentine Sources (Tenth-Sixteenth Centuries)." Ph.D. diss., Yale University.

Forthcoming. The Service-Books of Santa Maria del Fiore: Cathedral and Civic Ritual in Late-Medieval and Renaissance Florence. Cambridge.

Trexler, Richard. 1978. "Lorenzo de' Medici and Savonarola, Martyrs for Florence." Renaissance Quarterly 31.3:293-308.

-----. 1980. Public Life in Renaissance Florence. New York.

Wilson, Blake. 2001. "Music, Art, and Devotion: The Cult of St. Zenobius at the Florentine Cathedral During the Early Renaissance." In 'Cantate Domino.' Musica neisecoliperil Duomo di Firenze. Attidel Convegno Internazionale di Studi (Firenze, 23-25 maggio 1997), ed. Piero Gargiulo, Gabriele Giacomelli, and Carolyn Gianturco, 17-36. Florence.
COPYRIGHT 2003 Renaissance Society of America
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2003, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Author:Tacconi, Marica S.
Publication:Renaissance Quarterly
Geographic Code:4EUIT
Date:Jun 22, 2003
Previous Article:Giorgione's Tempest, studiolo culture, and the Renaissance Lucretius *.
Next Article:Placement, gender, pedagogy: Virgil's fourth Georgic in print *.

Related Articles
Lettere, vols. 5-6.
The Festival of San Giovanni: Imagery and Political Power in Renaissance Florence.
Banks, Palaces and Entrepreneurs in Renaissance Florence.
Machiavelli's 'Art of War': a reconsideration.
Civic Humanism and the Rise of the Medici [*].
From Poliziano to Machiavelli: Florentine Humanism in the High Renaissance.
The Government of Florence Under the Medici (1434 to 1494) & Republican Realism in Renaissance Florence: Francesco Guicciardini's "Discorso di...
Florentine Tuscany: Structures and Practices of Power. (Reviews).
La citta dei crucci: Fazioni e clientele in uno stato repubblicano del '400. .
Society and Individual in Renaissance Florence.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2018 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters