By Paul Strathern
One of many defining moments in Western background, the bloody and dramatic tale of the conflict for the soul of Renaissance Florence.
By the top of the 15th century, Florence was once good validated because the domestic of the Renaissance. As beneficiant consumers to the likes of Botticelli and Michelangelo, the ruling Medici embodied the revolutionary humanist spirit of the age, and in Lorenzo de' Medici (Lorenzo the extraordinary) they possessed a diplomat able to guarding the militarily vulnerable urban in a weather of regularly transferring allegiances among the key Italian powers.
However, within the kind of Savonarola, an unprepossessing provincial monk, Lorenzo stumbled on his nemesis. jam-packed with previous testomony fury and prophecies of doom, Savonarola's sermons reverberated between a disenfranchised inhabitants, who hottest medieval Biblical certainties to the philosophical interrogations and intoxicating floor glitter of the Renaissance. Savonarola's target used to be to set up a 'City of God' for his fans, a brand new form of democratic country, the likes of which the area had by no means noticeable earlier than. The conflict among those males will be a struggle to the demise, a sequence of sensational events—invasions, trials through fireplace, the 'Bonfire of the Vanities', poor executions and mysterious deaths—featuring a forged of crucial and charismatic Renaissance figures.
Was this an easy conflict of wills among a benign ruler and spiritual enthusiast? among secular pluralism and repressive extremism? In an exhilaratingly wealthy and deeply researched tale, Paul Strathern finds the paradoxes, self-doubts, and political compromises that made the conflict for the soul of the Renaissance urban probably the most complicated and demanding moments in Western background.
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Extra resources for Death in Florence: The Medici, Savonarola, and the Battle for the Soul of a Renaissance City
Thus an interest in myth implies a desire to acquire wisdom. So philosophy no longer implies, as it did in Plato, a radical rupture with tradition. Rather, it is equivalent to a reappropriation of that tradition, of the memory shared by all Greeks, and in particular all Athenians. / Tragedy is indissolubly linked to myth, much more so than comedy and satyrical drama. 3 The tragic poet reuses the great myths evoked by Homer, Hesiod, and others but transforms their meaning so that they serve to illustrate and defend the new values of the city.
While the first opposition is based on an external criterion, namely the relation of the discourse with its supposed referent, the second depends on an internal criterion: the organization of its development. It must be noted that this last opposition only makes sense in a philosophical context, as both history and myth partake of the narrative form. A narrative relates events as they are supposed to have happened, without giving an explanation. Consequently, the link between its parts is contingent, at least from a superficial viewpoint, for several attempts have been made, beginning with Propp’s,52 to uncover the logic of the narrative.
59 His disciples followed his example. ”60 As to Diogenes of Apollonia, who saw physical allegories in the Iliad and the Odyssey, he seems to have interpreted Zeus in the same way as the commentator of the Derveni Papyrus: “Diogenes praises Homer for having discussed divine questions, not in the form of myth but according to the truth (ouj muqikw'", ajll∆ ajlhqw'"). ”61 Even Democritus adhered to this interpretation, if we are to believe Clement of Alexandria: “Democritus not un- Aristotle and the Beginnings of Allegorical Exegesis / reasonably says that a few men of reason raise up their hands toward that which we Greeks now call air and speak of it as Zeus.