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The Golden Age returns: Virgil's fourth Eclogue in the political panegyric of the Italian courts

Houghton, L. B. T. (2015) The Golden Age returns: Virgil's fourth Eclogue in the political panegyric of the Italian courts. Journal of the Warburg and Courtauld Institutes, 78. pp. 71-95. ISSN 2044-0014

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Abstract/Summary

E. H. Gombrich and others have analysed the uses made of language and imagery from Virgil's famous fourth Eclogue in panegyrical writing by partisans of the Medici dynasty in Florence. This study examines the appropriation of the theme of the returning Golden Age and related motifs from the fourth Eclogue in other Italian courts during the same period, by supporters of the Visconti and Sforza of Milan, the Gonzaga of Mantua, Leonello d'Este and his successors in Ferrara, and the Bentivoglio of Bologna, among others. The deployment of this Virgilian material in political panegyric is seen to be a central element in the self-definition and self-promotion of dynastic rulers throughout the peninsula.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Humanities > Classics
ID Code:50157
Publisher:The Warburg Institute

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