Domestic Devotions in Early Modern Italy illuminates the vibrancy of spiritual beliefs and practices which profoundly shaped family life in this era. Scholarship on Catholicism has tended to focus on institutions, but the home was the site of religious instruction and reading, prayer and meditation, communal worship, multi-sensory devotions, contemplation of religious images and the performance of rituals, as well as extraordinary events such as miracles. Drawing on a wide range of sources, this volume affirms the central place of the household to spiritual life and reveals the myriad ways in which devotion met domestic needs. The seventeen essays encompass religious history, the histories of art and architecture, material culture, musicology, literary history, and social and cultural history.
Contributors are Erminia Ardissino, Michele Bacci, Michael J. Brody, Giorgio Caravale, Maya Corry, Remi Chiu, Sabrina Corbellini, Stefano Dall’Aglio, Marco Faini, Iain Fenlon, Irene Galandra Cooper, Jane Garnett, Joanna Kostylo, Alessia Meneghin, Margaret A. Morse, Elisa Novi Chavarria, Gervase Rosser, Zuzanna Sarnecka, Katherine Tycz, and Valeria Viola.
Maya Corry is College Lecturer in Early Modern History at Oriel College, University of Oxford. She works at the intersection of history and the history of art, and has published on gender, religion, the body and Leonardo.
Marco Faini is Marie Skłodowska Curie Fellow at the Universities of Venice and Toronto. He was Andrew W. Mellon Fellow at Villa I Tatti. The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies and Research Associate at the Department of Italian, University of Cambridge.
Alessia Meneghin is Ahmanson Fellow at Villa I Tatti. The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies in Florence. She has published a monograph on the Misericordie, and many articles on the Arti Minori, and on Renaissance Florentine economy and society.
“This volume makes a substantial contribution to the redefinition of religious identities in early modern Italy […] The volume excels at challenging the enduring notion of an evenly shared Catholic religiosity, administered and regulated rigorously through institutions. The early modern household, so well presented here, reveals itself to be a complex network of devotions and cults, mixing vivid images and icons with pouches of seeds, holy scrolls, herbs, rosaries, and, most importantly, ideas.”
Marco Piana, Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts in Renaissance and Reformation 42.3
Acknowledgments List of Illustrations Notes on the Editors Notes on the Contributors
Introduction Maya Corry, Marco Faini and Alessia Meneghin
Part 1: The Unbounded Nature of Domestic Space
1 Singing on the Street and in the Home in Times of Pestilence: Lessons from the 1576–78 Plague of Milan Remi Chiu
2 The Ex Voto between Domestic and Public Space: From Personal Testimony to Collective Memory Jane Garnett and Gervase Rosser
3 Spaces for Domestic Devotion in the Noble Residences of Palermo in the Age of Catholic Reform Valeria Viola
4 Music and Domestic Devotion in the Age of Reform Iain Fenlon
Part 2: Domesticating the Divine
5 Domestic Portraiture in Early Modern Venice: Devotion to Family and Faith Margaret A. Morse
6 Domestic Religion and Connected Spaces: Isabella della Rovere, Princess of Bisignano (1552–1619) Elisa Novi Chavarria
7 “And the Word Dwelt amongst Us”: Experiencing the Nativity in the Italian Renaissance Home Zuzanna Sarnecka
Part 3: The Materiality of Devotion
8 Religious Subjects on Sixteenth-Century Deruta Piatti da Pompa Michael J. Brody
9 Investigating the ‘Case’ of the Agnus Dei in Sixteenth-Century Italian Homes Irene Galandra Cooper
10 Material Prayers and Maternity in Early Modern Italy: Signed, Sealed, Delivered Katherine M. Tycz
11 Devotional Panels as Sites of Intercultural Exchange Michele Bacci
Part 4: Prayer and Meditation
12 Creating Domestic Sacred Space: Religious Reading in Late Medieval and Early Modern Italy Sabrina Corbellini
13 Delight in Painted Companions: Shaping the Soul from Birth in Early Modern Italy Maya Corry
14 Literary and Visual Forms of a Domestic Devotion: The Rosary in Renaissance Italy Erminia Ardissino
Part 5: Conflict and Control
15 Domestic Prayers and Miracles in Renaissance Italy: The Case of Savonarola and His Cult Stefano Dall’Aglio
16 Private and Public Devotion in Late Renaissance Italy: The Role of Church Censorship Giorgio Caravale
17 Contested Devotions: Space, Identities and Religious Dissent in the Apothecary’s Home Joanna Kostylo
Academics and students interested in the history of the early modern family and home; religious devotion; Catholicism; Italy; and the relationship between humans and the sacred.