Elizabethan Theater: First Professional Actors with Non-Religious Themes

The theater covered such diverse themes as history, romance, revenge, murder, comedy, and tragedy. Introduction Elizabethan theatre, sometimes called English Renaissance theatre, refers to that style of performance plays which blossomed during the reign of Elizabeth I of England (r. 1558-1603 CE) and which continued under her Stuart successors. Elizabethan theatre witnessed the first professional[…]

Guido Mazzoni and Portrayals of Grief in Renaissance Art

In renaissance Italy, displays of grief were expected to be moderated. Why Mourning Matters A life-size, terracotta (a type of earthenware) sculpture group shows seven biblical figures gathered around the dead body of Jesus Christ. Created in the 1480s for Duke Ercole d’Este of Ferrara, Guido Mazzoni’s sculpture group also includes the duke and his[…]

Female Artists in the Renaissance

Women have always been artists, even famed artists. So why were many forgotten? Recovering Forgotten Masters When Renaissance painter Plautilla Nelli got her first solo exhibit at Florence’s Uffizi Gallery in 2017, some art historians asked . . . Plautilla who??  Despite being a celebrated artist in sixteenth-century Florence, Nelli had been forgotten by art[…]

Introduction to Gender in Renaissance Italy

Internal virtues, including gender characteristics, were believed to be communicated through outward appearance. Ideal Representative of Masculinity and Femininity In a pair of portraits painted by the Venetian artist Titian (see above), the Duke and Duchess of Urbino are presented as ideal representatives of their sexes. Duke Francesco Maria della Rovere, the great mercenary captain,[…]

Knights Hospitaller: Medieval Catholic Military Order

They were founded in 1113 CE with the full name of ‘Knights of the Order of the Hospital of Saint John of Jerusalem’. Introduction After their base was relocated to Rhodes in the early 14th century CE, the order’s members of the Knights Hospitaller were often called the Knights of Rhodes and when they moved[…]

Mosaics and Microcosm: Iconography in Ancient Byzantine Monasteries

Byzantine texts interpreted the domed church as a microcosm – a three-dimensional image of the cosmos. Ecstatic Motion The city of Constantinople, capital of the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire since its foundation by Constantine in 330 C.E., was roiled by the Iconoclastic Controversy in the 8th and 9th centuries. Emperors, bishops, and many others debated[…]

Can a Virtual Relationship Work?

There are many reasons why people enjoying a relationship might find themselves separated by distance – work commitments, college courses, and so on. Perhaps they met on holiday and aren’t just a matter of miles apart but living in different timezones! Online dating sites has given singles the opportunity to contact prospective partners from a[…]