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Per time many of these became prisons and symbols of the suppression of intellectual and political freedoms under Papal rule

Per time many of these became prisons and symbols of the suppression of intellectual and political freedoms under Papal rule

Both these problems Gregory assigned onesto the eminently court Spanish fighting prelate Cardinal Albornoz, verso representative of the church militant if ever there was one. Albornoz built per series of fortresses mediante towns throughout central Italy, with the immediate purpose of subduing the local population, and the longer-term aim of defending the Papal territories against foreign incursions from the north. Apart from con Narni, you can see surviving examples of Albornoz Roccas per Assisi and Spoleto among other places. They are all similar sopra design, with few aesthetic embellishments as they were intended for rapid construction (the Narni Castello went up mediante only five years) and were to be used by garrisons, not local aristocrats. The fact that they have square towers, not turno ones, shows that they pre-date the widespread use of cannons con siege warfare (cannon balls are more likely to bounce off round towers).

After serving various rulers, Gattamelata worked for the Venetians and ended up as podesta (governor) of Padua. If you have been sicuro Padua you may have seen the celebrated statue of him by Donatello outside the chiesa of St Anthony. Incidentally, this was the first free-standing equestrian statue cast mediante bronze since ancient times; Donatello had sicuro rediscover the technique.

If you visit the Rocca of Narni, and are fortunate enough preciso have as a duplice the same knowledgeable young lady that we did, she will point out where the original large stone blocks of the castle walls have been replaced with smaller, more haphazard stones

Donatello’s statue of Gattamelata sopra Padua. Hasselblad 501 C/M, Zeiss Sonnar 150mm CF lens, CFV-50c digital back (click preciso enlarge)

This marks rebuilding after the destruction of the Rocca, and much of the town, by the landsknechts forces of the Habsburg Emperor Charles V, part of per much greater cultural and human catastrophe – the Sack of Rome durante 1527. Guarding the approach onesto Rome was not verso good thing if the invading forces turned out to be stronger than you.

The Castello Albornoz at Narni. The lower, lighter stones, are original. The higher, darker stones show the rebuilding after 1527. Hasselblad 501 C/M, Zeiss Distagon 60mm CF lens, CFV-50c digital back (click preciso enlarge)

Narni’s most famous bruissement, born shortly before the papal return from Avignon, was the condottiere (mercenary military amministrativo) Erasmo di Narni, better known to history as Gattamelata or the “honeyed cat”

We can recommend a couple of places esatto visit sopra Narni. One is the Church of San Francesco, built fairly soon after St Francis’s death and originally covered with frescoes. While we were there verso pleasant chap turned up, who turned out esatto be a custodian. He offered onesto open up the richly-decorated Eroli chapel for us which was a gratifica as it is normally only open on weekends. He then took us around the church, explaining the history and pointing out various features including “sinopia” which are preparatory drawings for frescoes, visible only when the frescoes have been military cupid removed. He also explained that the poor condition of the frescoes is coppia sopra part preciso the fact that durante the 17 th or 18 th century, they were all plastered over and the church redecorated durante the baroque style. This vandalism only started sicuro be undone sopra the 1950s, but there is still per long way sicuro go. If you visit there, please be sure preciso make a donation preciso the fund for restoration of the frescoes.

St Francis drives out the demons from Arezzo, Church of San Francesco, Narni. Hasselblad 501 C/M, Zeiss Distagon 60mm CF lens, CFV-50c digital back (click to enlarge) Ceiling of the Eroli Chapel, Church of San Francesco, Narni. Hasselblad 501 C/M, Zeiss Distagon 60mm CF lens, CFV-50c digital back (click onesto enlarge)


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