The Raising of Drusiana : in the Perruzi and Strozzi Chapels, Florence

presented as a Seminar at the Courtauld Institute of Art, London 1994

Raichel Le Goff

On the walls of two chapels in Florence, there are two fresco paintings of a miraculous event; The Raising of Drusiana. One is by Giotto, the other by Filippino Lippi. Both murals refer to the same hagiographical source, were commissioned by leading Florentine bankers, decorate the walls of family burial chapels and are images intended to evoke the promise of life after death. Yet, visually, the images have few parallels, and emotionally, they provoke wholly different responses in the beholder. From one mural to the other, the articulation of the same theme has undergone a startling transformation.

This essay looks at how two Florentine artists have interpreted the Raising of Drusiana in works which are distanced not only by time, but by changes in cultural attitudes.

The artistic vision of a painter cannot help but be conditioned by the society he moves within. A typology of certain attitudes toward religion, tradition and social practices delineates different periods in Italian painting. Giotto di Bondone, was asked by Giovanni di Rinieri Peruzzi, to decorate the family chapel at Santa Croce sometime around 1325. In the last decade of the fifteenth century, Filippino began to paint the murals in the Strozzi family chapel at Santa Maria Novella. Between the execution of these two works, Florence endured the Black Death, witnessed the ascent of the Medici and saw the rise of the studia humanitatis bring about great changes in the role of the clergy. In 1436 Alberti published his influential treatise on painting and artists dicovered classical precedents for their own chief concerns in Pliny's Historia naturalis. Dramatic changes like these, effected not only the outlook of the artist but the outlook of the patron and meant that the visualization of a religious theme could not remain static.

In painting, the subject of the Raising of Drusiana, was given its first major exposition in the Peruzzi Chapel. At the time of the commission, Giotto was fifty-eight years old, at the height of his powers and esteemed by his contemporaries as Florence's leading artist.

Dante wrote : "Cimabue thought to hold the field in painting, and now Giotto has the cry, so that the fame of the former is obscured."

Situated adjacent to the Peruzzi Chapel in Santa Croce is the Bardi family chapel, where Giotto had painted the fresco cycle of scenes from the life of Saint Francis. The Peruzzi, were one of the city's principal banking families and the donor of the murals, Giovanni, would have been eager to outdo the chapel of the Bardi family in the best Florentine spirit of inter-familial competition. Giotto, painter to the wealthiest and most cultured members of the upper middle class, was the logical and ideal choice of artist.

Among the ritual expressions of honor, death rites occupied a central place in trecento Florence. Funerals were very public occasions. As the cortege wound its way around the streets, piazzas and churches of Florence, the Florentines were reminded of the personal and family histories of the deceased. In a society that had no official patrician class, Florentines relied on common opinion to make their reputations. This was also true at the time of Filippo Strozzi's death in 1491 as evidenced by his magnificent funeral.

The Peruzzi and Strozzi chapels were a public expression of patronage, wealth and reputation, that reinforced the family honour.

The mural scheme of the Peruzzi chapel is dedicated to San Giovanni Battista and San Giovanni Evangelista, suggesting important parallels, between aspects of the Saints personalities and those of the donor, whose name too was 'Giovanni'.

Jacobus de Voraigne's Legenda Aurea provided the textual source for Giotto's Raising of Drusiana. John the Evangelist is entering the city of Ephesus in Asia Minor, when he meets the funeral procession of Drusiana, a woman who, in her lifetime had followed John's own example. John is told by members of the funeral party that Drusiana had longed to set eyes on him again before her death. The Saint tells the procession to stop and commands, "Drusiana arise, and go into thy house, and make ready for me some refection.". Drusiana, miraculously restored to life, is seen sitting up on the bier.

We cannot know for certain why Giotto chose this particular scene out of the many episodes in the life of John the Evangelist, but certainly, the theme of death and rebirth implying life after death, was particularly appropriate for a burial chapel. Drusiana is not a saint, she is an ordinary woman and this miracle of raising her from the dead, points to the rewards that are due to the pious citizen. The emphasis on divinely assisted resurrection is surely meant to offer a promise of future resurrection to the donor of the murals and all others buried within the chapel.

The Raising of Drusiana does not appear frequently in trecento or quattrocento painting. Resurrection themes from the legend of Saint Francis seem to have enjoyed a certain popularity with the Master of Saint Cecilia, a contemporary of Giotto, painting The Raising of the Woman of Beneventum for the Franciscans at the Upper Church in Assisi and Domenico Ghirlandaio painting the Resuscitation of a Boy of the Spini House, for the Sassetti family chapel in Santa Trinita.

In undertaking the decoration of the Peruzzi chapel, Giotto took an opportunity to try and advance one step further, to impress one degree more, than he had in the highly praised Bardi chapel. Not only was the Raising of Drusiana fresh subject material, but Giotto's design for this scene has been called "the most ambitious crowd scene" of his career. In it, Giotto tries for the first time to emancipate the idea of space from the rule of the solid object. This is achieved by the unfolding planes of the wall which stretch continuously behind the figures. At neither side do we have an indication that the wall is going to stop. Against this rhythmical backdrop of pink walls ribbed in grey, the figures have the freedom to move across a three-dimensional space. Even the perspective of the ground is understood and all the figures have their just proportions to one another, and to the buildings.

Scholars invariably agree that Giotto's Raising of Drusiana is astonishing for its innovative departure from an archaic style, yet I am more interested in Giotto's handling of the theme.

I can find no specific model that Giotto has relied upon.

Instead, it appears that he has observed closely, the funeral processions of his own time and transposed the scene to a historical location. The close observation of the woman's cerements and the formal arrangement of the cortege, suggest the artist's familiarity with the ritual of death.

Contemporary chronicles and diaries, tell us that a Florentine funeral normally took place within twenty-four hours after death. This could account for the reason that Giotto has depicted Drusiana looking quite full in form and not like a terrible cadaver as he showed us in The Raising of Lazarus in the Arena Chapel, Padua.

A funeral usually began with a gathering of mourners at the deceased's house; from there the cortege proceeded through the neighbourhood or quarter to the burial church. Male members of the family dominated the cortege, although female members were not always excluded. The gender of mourners in the cortege also differed according to the sex of the dead person and female attendance was further restricted by sumptuary laws.

Giotto must have witnessed many such funerals and whilst his vision of Drusiana's funeral seems influenced by contemporary ritual, Filippino's does not. He aims at a total re-construction of an imaginary past. So many women in a cortege would have been highly unusual for a late fifteenth century funeral.

Giotto integrates the configuration of a normal Florentine funeral with de Voraigne's description of Drusiana's funeral procession continuing on "outside the city walls". It is here that Drusiana's relatives speak to the Evangelist of the virtuous and pious way she conducted her life in a way that moved the saint to acknowledge her piety. Giotto has also carefully considered individual character and action, according to age, sex and quality. The only two women in Giotto's procession have lost decorum and throw themselves on their knees before the Saint. This corresponds to the fact that the exclusion or restriction of women at funerals was not unusual at the time and one reason for this was that women were deemed too demonstrative in their grief: in 1373, Petrarch wrote to Francesco da Carrara advising him to

"order that wailing women should not be permitted to step outside their homes; and if some lamentation is necessary...let them do it at home and do not let them disturb the public thoroughfares".

By managing to assimilate his own commonplace understanding of a funeral procession into the depiction of a miraculous event from the distant past, Giotto has injected a strong sense of realism into the supernatural narrative. He chose the dramatic highpoint; the moment when John ordered Drusiana to rise. Direct communciation seems exclusive to the Saint and the woman as he commands her to arise from the bier, seemingly drawing her upward with the power of his outstretched hand. The central section of the city wall in the background forms an oblique set structure that inflates the distance between John and Drusiana. They act out the central drama whilst two groups of figures observe from the wings. The Evangelist is encircled by kneeling women and one of his followers. A cripple and several of Johns' followers gather in a group behind whilst to the right, one man supports the bier and Drusiana's mourners stand in astonishment at the miracle occurring before their eyes. Among this crowd stands a solemn, tonsured candle-bearer, indicating that the procession is Christian.

Giotto has attempted to place the scene within a historical context by atiring his figures in voluminous classical robes and lending the architecture a distinctly Eastern flavour with components typically found on Byzantine churches.

How very different then, is Filippino Lippi's extravagant treatment of the same subject. We move from Giotto's dignified and solemn statement to a festive vision of antiquity. The cortege that carries the Christian Drusiana off to burial is now paganized. We are confronted with the splendour of classical Rome in the monumental architecture, the grottesche, the Latin inscriptions and numerous tributes to the antique world.

Where Giotto saw austere monumentality, befitting the spiritual mystery of the event, Filippino saw rich surfaces, agitated outlines, and curved forms in a far more lively composition. The figures are relegated to a frieze-like band at the bottom of the mural, taking up only a third of the mural as opposed to Giotto's figures which occupy over half the height of the mural. There are too many interesting characters in Filippino's procession for Drusiana and John to hold our attentions. Lavish detail detracts from the prominence of the Evangelist's gesture, with the architecture almost upstaging the story. John's stature is demeaned by sharing his pictorial space with a jigsaw townscape behind him, instead of being allowed to command a strong profile as against Giotto's plain Ephesian walls.

Although Filippino's preparatory sketches show that his primi pensieri were alert to Giotto's example, the Strozzi fresco does not immediately suggest this. By the time Filippino came to paint his version, he pays little regard to either the Golden Legend or to Giotto's example. de Voraigne writes that:

"John, who had wrongly been expelled to the island, (of Patmos) was led into the city of Ephesus with great honours...But as he entered the city, they carried towards him the dead Drusiana...".

Giotto has staged this confrontation between the two groups with John at the head of his followers, whereas the saint appears to have wandered into Lippi's scenario totally unaccompanied. The rhetoric expressed by Giotto's dramatis personae has also not transferred to the Strozzi mural. Drusiana's female relations implore the Saint with their upturned hands in the Peruzzi mural and yet in Filippino's painting, no figures communicate with John, we are left to presume that the women on the right have already spoken to him. In fact, gestures of reverence to the saint are absent from Filippino's painting. It almost seems that only Drusiana recognises him. There are no spontaneous movements of hands clasped in prayer, or crossed on the breast in a ritual action. Lippi is not interested in conveying the expressions of awe, reverence or devotion, he concentrates on depicting surprise, alarm, confusion and if the uniformly tilted heads of the women are to be interpreted as expressing an emotion rather than just duplicating a graceful pose, it would appear to be timidity.

So why should Filippino possess such a different vision of the 'Raising of Drusiana', to Giotto?

The explanation lies partly in the way intellectual development and directions of interest changed among artists after the trecento. Predominant, was an increased curiosity in the antique world. At the end of the fourteenth century, the art of Italy and the sometimes called "International style" was far from symbolizing a revival in the style all'antica. But by the time Filippino came to paint the Strozzi Chapel, it was the accepted vogue. His own master, Boticelli, was an enthusiastic disciple.

The antique attitude that the most extensive possible universal education was necessary or at least most desirable for artistic production had been set forth prominently by Vitruvius. This opinion was adopted by Renaissance theorists, particularly by Alberti and Ghiberti, and represented as an ideal requirement for an artist. That many artists lived up to this old humanistic theory in practice, is evidenced by the work of Brunelleschi and Donatello who went to Rome with the intention of studying the classical world at the source.

This interest in the antique on the artist's part, ran parallel to that of their patrons. Florentine humanists such as Niccolo Niccoli and Leonardo Bruni were also collectors. Donatello had produced copies of scenes from antique cameos in marble relief for Cosimo de Medici who was an avid collector of antique sculpture, coins and medallions.

This trend of the artist seeking to imitate the antique, whilst working for a patron who wished to be seen as a custodian of the classical world, meant that the painters and the humanistic patron worked in unison.

Strozzi himself, wrote a critical treatise on Pliny's Historia Naturalis and collected antiquities.Filippino was fortunate in having a patron whose personal taste was for elaborate antique ornament for Vasari wrote that Filippino

"never executed a work in which he did not make use of Roman antiquities, carefully studied, such as vases, buskins, trophies, banners, crests, temple ornaments, headdresses, strange costumes, armor, scimitars, swords, togas, mantles and other such things, various and beautiful".

Filippino's summons to Rome in 1488 to decorate the Carafa Chapel at Santa Maria Sopra Minerva meant that he enjoyed several years of studying the antique attractions of Rome firsthand. By allowing the painter to remain in Rome longer than he should have, Strozzi was encouraging the artist to give expression to his own artistic and cultural tendencies. Strozzi understood that Rome was a direct stimulus to Filippino's imaginative powers and that whatever the painter learned in Rome, would only serve to make his own chapel more magnificent.

It was Strozzi who is stated in the contract as being the one to decide the iconographical program for the chapel and even though we do not know when he communicated the subjects to Filippino, it is presumed that the designs had been worked out before he died in 1491.

Although the Dominicans of Santa Maria Novella undoubtedly were also consulted and asked to approve the chapel program, one receives the impression that they no longer held as much sway over the situation as the Franciscans had in Giotto's day. Could the monks really have approved of Filippino's lascivious panel on the pagan building to the right of the mural that shows a naked nymph being molested by bacchic figures?

In general, Giotto's patrons stated in the contract the thematic motives of the work to be done, but the Franciscans of Santa Croce would have utilized their close relationship with the Peruzzi to exercise a cardinal influence over the choice of frescoes for the chapel program. Giotto's artistic freedom would have been not only curtailed by the demands of his patron, but by the censorship of the Franciscans. Although the individual Peruzzi frescoes do not neccessarily reflect the Francsican virtue of poverty and the renunciation of worldly goods, the Evangelist himself would have met with their approval as subject material for he is quoted as saying : "If you wish to be perfect go and sell what you have, give the money to the poor and follow me." 

Trecento Florence was essentially an ecclesiastical culture and Giotto's art was subject to the Church's fundamental views on how objects of worship and veneration should be represented. One requisite was that art should be generally intelligible : "By God's grace we are called to display to the uneducated who cannot read the wonderful things which have been achieved through and in the power of the holy Faith."

In the Peruzzi mural, Giotto's narrative obeys this rule, he keeps the rhetoric conservative and explicit, whereas Filippino seems intent on confounding the viewer. "the uneducated who cannot read" would have been lost before Filippino's plethora of sophisticated classical quotes. Only an elite audience would have been able to decipher the literary references and to perceive the underlying association with the ancient cult of Diana, a pagan deity whose image, Strozzi was said to have worn on his belt.

However, Filippino sets out to do something different to Giotto; he sets out to celebrate Florentine glory. The devotional aspects of the image are minimalized and it becomes a statement on Florence as a successor to classical Rome. Florence is now the cultural capital of Europe and the rich Florentine families are a product of the city, making Strozzi glory and Florentine glory, synonymous. More than exalting christianity and the teachings of the church, the Raising of Drusiana is a memorial to Strozzi himself, reflecting his personal taste, interests and intellectual ambitions and it is a taste allied to the new learning and not the old.

Whilst much of the material for fifteenth century humanistic studies had been well known in Giotto's time, such as classical texts from Virgil, Ovid, Horace and Seneca, a literal reconstruction of the ancient world had never been imposed upon religious trecento art.

The secular nature of the programme of studies taught in the quattrocento studia humanitatis, challenged the students of Christianity and the studia divinatis. The aim of the umanista was basically, to examine ancient non-Christian sources of wisdom.

For Giovanni Caroli, who was prior of Santa Maria Novella until 1460, and closely associated with the community at Santa Maria Novella up to his death in 1503, there were profound spiritual and cultural differences between Filippino's Medicean Florence and the medieval city that Giotto knew. In Caroli's two major literary works, the Liber dierum and the Vitae fratrum, the friar explores the reasons for the demise of the religious system of the Dominican order to which he belongs. He sees the Black Death of 1348 as marking the decline of an ideal epoch in Florence when monastic communities were vital and active organisms within the city. Caroli wrote about contrasts in terms of Florentine cultural, civic and political life, indicating how Giotto's Florence underwent the transformation from a trecento communal society into the burgeoning city-state of the quattrocento. These profound differences are reflected in Lippi's approach to the Raising of Drusiana.

Modern scholarship has failed to decipher all the antique motifs in Filippino's mural and it is doubtful if Filippino was learned enough to understand all his sources fully.

The predominance of females in the cortege, may suggest that Filippino wished to evoke an ancient Roman funeral rite when professional female mourners were hired to wail over the dead. This is further substantiated by the female figure on the right who supports the large processional staff from which trails a banner with another latin inscription CONCLAMATUM, which provides a literary reference to part of the Roman funeral rite. Virgil mentions this lament several times in the Aeneid.Yet why has Filippino carved the Latinized form of the Greek word ORGIA on an altar and why the esoteric reliefs?

Whether Filippino was fully cognizant of the significance of these antique quotes or whether they were mischievously planted to perplex the beholder, he relishes playing the 'classicist' as he scatters these antique accessories freely over the composition. Unlike Ghirlandaio, who in the Tornabuoni Chapel manages to combine classical elements within a contemporary context giving his audience access to the episodes painted, Filippino creates a sense of historical distance between we the beholders and the event taking place.

This is opposed to Giotto's simple and realistic arrangement that makes the Raising of Drusiana more accessible to us. Giotto was concerned with placing the beholder right there in Ephesus, a witness to the miracle. He does this by cutting the scene down to its essential, dramatic core. The long plain robes and lack of personal adornment, serve to render his figures almost timeless and therefore, contemporary. The candle-bearer is a familiar figure, a Tuscan priest that Florentines could identify with. Filippino has replaced this figure with an androgynous beauty carrying a liturgical staff that is encrusted with obscure images.

Filippino's cast of exotic characters are more exciting to look at, but they are not familiar, they do not behave like Giotto's conventional Christian gathering. Drusiana resembles a young Susannah or Lucretia, startled from her bed by the touch of an old man. The grotesque pallbearer with his hand raised in a mockery of the Saint's benediction, the profusion of children gripping their pretty mothers and the dog barking in the corner, all detract from the sacred nature of the act. The Strozzi murals are all about distraction, about leading the eye to wonder from point to point. One experiences this upon entering the chapel. Giotto, on the other hand, is concerned with the impact of the human drama. As a result, Filippino lacks the pathos that we find in Giotto.

Not only was the chapel a symbol of honour for the living, but as it was also to be used as a burial place for family members, the chapel represented an opportunity to encapsulate the honor of the dead. The memory of Giovanni Peruzzi is thus perpetuated via Giotto's artistry in the Raising of Drusiana and we perceive that the donor hoped to be allied with Christian piety and with the innermost spiritual meaning of the sacred history depicted. In contrast, the psychological effects of Filippino's outwardly pagan style bring us to be more impressed with the personal glorification of the man who commissioned the work. We conclude that this man is first and foremost, a wealthy Florentine and an enthusiast of the antique and only secondly, can aspects of his personality be considered counterpart to the sacred theme of the Raising of Drusiana.

Giovanni Caroli, lamented the decline of the religious institution and the way it had lost its civic and religious function, its historical role, and its justification with the coming of the new Renaissance society. As a consequence of the breakdown of monastic life, Caroli saw a general decline in theological inquiry. This coincides with the resurgence of the studia humanitatis which meant that Florentine intellectuals, scholars and artists were less inclined to spend time contemplating the lessons of the studia divinatis.

I think that this decline, is reflected in Filippino's Raising of Drusiana which is powerfully shaped by the new learning of the quattrocento and signifies a rupture with Giotto's Florence of the medieval past. 

FOOTNOTES (Apologies, formatting has not been perfected and although the footnotes appear in order as they do in the text, they are not yet numbered.)

 The actual date of the commission is not recorded. This approximate dating is taken from Tintori and Borsook, p.10.

 The contract of 1487 21st April, allocated the murals to Filippino Lippi, yet the records seem to show that he did not start working on the chapel until 1489 when a payment of ninety florins was made between 8th August and 26th September. It is thought that Lippi had only executed the vault frescoes and not begun the murals, when he returned to Rome to work on the Carafa Chapel after this date. The next record of payment to Filippino is 22nd August 1494. From this date onward, he worked intermittently on the Strozzi Chapel till he completed the Raising of Drusiana which is dated 1502.

 Pliny's Historia naturalis was translated into Italian in 1473.

 from L.Schneider, Giotto in Perspective, New Jersey, 1974, p.27.

 Again, there is no secure dating for the completion of the Bardi Chapel and the commencement of work on the Peruzzi Chapel, but based on stylistic grounds, the murals in the Bardi Chapel are generally thought to be slightly earlier.

 Jacobus de Voraigne, Archbishop of Genoa, published the Golden Legend circa. 1275. Although the Raising of Drusiana is first mentioned in the apochryphal Acts of St John, it seems consistent with Giotto's personality and practice that he should make use of the Golden Legend which in 1325, was still, a fairly 'new' and fashionable text.

 There are several translations and interpretations of Jacobus de Voraigne's Legenda Aurea and details vary from one to the other. Moshe Barasch in Giotto and the Language of Gesture, quotes from a 1969 reprint of the New York, 1941 edition where there is no mention of John ordering Drusiana "to make refection". However, most authors mention that John did speak these words.

 Most early examples of the theme are derived from Giotto's model, cf. The Raising of Drusiana by a follower of Taddeo Gaddi in the chapel of the caste at Poppi (Casentino), in Giotto, The Peruzzi Chapel, Tintori and Borsook, 1965, fig. 17b, p.35. and see note 8, below.

 The composition of the latter appears to owe much to Giotto's Raising of Drusiana with the groupings of women mourners and male procession members, reversed.

 L. Tintori & E. Borsook, Giotto, The Peruzzi Chapel, New York, 1965, p.19.

 "Regardless of social class, mothers, wives, sisters, daughters and daughters-in-law did not follow their dead kin to the grave in places of honor in the late fourteenth and fifteenth centuries." Whereas during the early trecento, women were more restricted than forbidden. Sharon T. Strocchia, Death Rites and the Ritual Family, in Life and Death in Fifteenth-Century Florence, edited by Tetel, Witt & Goffen, 1989, p. 126.


 This gesture would have made more impact when Drusiana's hands were still visible in the fresco. The section of plaster had been damaged and although the hands had been repainted in old restorations, they were completely removed in the 1958-1961 restoration. Early versions that this fresco inspired, suggest Drusiana's hands were joined in prayer, a gesture seen many times throughout Giotto's oeuvre, eg. St. Francis in The Miracle of the Spring fresco , Upper Church, Assisi.

 Moshe Barasch has suggested that the kneeling figure with arms crossed behind John, is Callimachus. cf. M. Barasch, Giotto and the Language of Gesture, Cambridge, 1987, p. 87.

 Despite the fact that Ephesus was a Roman city at the time that Drusiana is supposed to have lived, it did become an important Byzantine city after..... Whilst Giotto's Ephesian walls and city gate hint at an Eastern location, the building that projects from the walls on the right is clearly suggestive of 11th century Byzantine church architecture. It thus seems Giotto has remained faithful to the Christianized notion of Ephesus, rather than to the Romanized pagan image that Filippino favours.

 J.R. Sale, in The Strozzi Chapel by Filippino Lippi in Santa Maria Novella, (Ph.D. University of Pennsylvania, 1976), pointed out that in an early sketch by Filippino, the figure of Drusiana is facing in the same direction as in the Peruzzi chapel fresco and that a more complete sketch, now in the Uffizi, shows several details that coincide with Giotto's composition.

 Vitruvius states that a man who intends to follow an artistic profession should be a : "man of letters, a skilful draughtsman, a mathematician, familiar with historical studies, a diligent student of philosophy, acquainted with music; not ignorant of medicine, learned in the responses of jurisconsults, familiar with astronomy and astronomical calculations." De Architectura, Vol. I, Book I, Chapter I, 'On Training of Architects', (2.-3.), Loeb Classical Library, p. 7.

 Milanesi, 1878, III, 471-2.

 It may also be pertinent to note that the leading Northern Italian artist of the time, Mantegna, was also in Rome, working on his series of large paintings, The Triumphs of Ceasar. Mantegna included figures and motifs copied from Trajan's column and his panels are crammed full with Roman remnants. The antique statuary, friezes and architectural ruins of ancient Rome provided him with rich material for his Triumphs. It is not known if Filippino saw these great works in progress during his stay in Rome, but Mantegna's Triumphs overflow with the paraphanalia of antique Rome and there is something of the processional forward movement of figures in fluttering robes, captured in Lippi's mural. The staff bearer and the priest leading the procession carry urns and recall figures in Mantegna's third and fourth Triumph scenes that bear trophies and precious vases, particularly a figure of a moor that looks backward over his shoulder in a pose akin to that of Filippino's staff bearer. The huddled group of women and children, relate to a group of captive women nursing small children in the seventh Triumph.

 It is first recorded that Filippino went to Rome on 27th August 1488. In a letter from Rome dated 2nd May 1489, Filippino wrote to Filippo Strozzi asking his indulgence on account of the delay of the Santa Maria Novella commission. (letter printed in Bicchierai, 'Alcuni Documenti,' and by Muntz in "Archivio storico dell'arte", II, 1889.)

 Filippo Strozzi stated in his will that the work on the chapel was to continue and be finished by 14th May 1493, 'according to the agreed upon plans'.

 de Voraigne, op.cit., vol.I, chapter IX, p.112. (see p. 45 Borsook)

 The opening words of the Statutes of the Painters in Siena in 1355, cf.F. Antal, Florentine Painting and its Social Background, Harvard 1986 ed., p.277.

 see J.R. Sale's discussion of the iconography of the mural, loc.cit.9, pp. 251-277. Sale puts forth the theory that most of the classical elements in the mural allude to the goddess Diana and ancient religious ritual.

 Liber dierum lucensium, Biblioteca Nazionale of Florence, Conv. Soppr., C.8.279, 1-56v. Vite nonnullorum fratrum beate Marie Novelle, Biblioteca Laurenziana, Florence, Plut. 89, inf. 21.

 The Latin conclamo; to shout loudly together; cry violently in company; a cry of grief, refers to an ancient Roman rite of lamentation, the conclamatio funebris.


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Baxandall, Michael, Painting and Experience in Fifteenth Century Italy, (1972) reprinted Oxford 1991.

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Bertelli, Sergio, The Courts of the Italian Renaissance, USA, 1986.

Borsook, E., Mural Painters of Tuscany.

Borsook, E. and Corti, G., "Documents for Filippo Strozzi's Chapel in Santa Maria Novella and other Related Papers", Burlington Magazine, CXII (1970), pp. 737-45, 800-04.

Burckhardt, Jacob, The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy, Penguin edition 1990.

Camesasca, Ettore, Mantegna, Scala 1992.

Freedberg, David, The Power of Images, Chicago 1989.

Micheletti, Emma, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Scala 1990.

Neilson, Katharine B., Filippino Lippi, Harvard 1938.

Panofsky, Erwin, Renaissance and Renascences in Western Art, Icon Editions, New York, 1972.

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Tetel, Witt & Goffen, (editors). "Life and Death in Fifteenth-Century Florence", edited by Duke University Press, 1989.

Virgil, The Aeneid, translated by Rovert Fitzgerald, Penguin 1981. 
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