Thursday, February 28, 2013

A memento of papal history in Milan

Milan, crossroads of travel between Italy and everything north of the Alps, hosted a recently elected pope.

The 1417 election in Constance of...More......

...Martin V, of the powerful Roman Colonna family, brought an end to the schism that had plagued Christendom.

On his way back to Rome, the pope stopped in Milan, and, in 1418, blessed the principal altar of the city's newly begun Duomo (newly begun in cathedral-building terms, that is, almost 20 years earlier).

To commemorate the event, Jacopino da Tradate was commissioned to create this image of the pope (1424).

It is visible in the Duomo's right hand part of the ambulatory...when it's open....

Not quite a "This day in Milan's history,...," but appropriate for today's historic stepping down of a reigning pope, only the second time ever in history (and perhaps the first time willingly).

One point for the first person to know (without looking it up!) who the first was, when and why...O.K., three points for all three!



Glenn Harcourt said...

Nice little bit of papal art history. Just ran across a book the other day that you might enjoy: Trent What Happened at the Council by John W. O'Malley (and he should know) on Harvard/Belknap -- I don't know how easy these things are to come by in Milano; but, then, there's always Amazon. Miss you. xG.ingsvala

Star said...

The book sounds great, thanks for the heads-up.

(O.K., I confess, I pushed the history bit a smidgeon for effect. The only other pope to step down probably was more than happy to do it...but he also most probably received a lot of rigorous nudging to do it, especially from the pope elected to succeed him. Still no guesses, anyone?!)

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