The two funeral ceremonies of the first duke of Milan Gian Galeazzo Visconti (1402, 1474) were characterized by sumptuousness and princely ambition, by the participation of huge numbers of guests and public, by celebration of the achievements of the deceased and the power of the dukedom, and by imitation of regal pomp with regard to corpse and burial. Nevertheless, these features were not repeated and imitated in the exequies of other fifteenth-century dukes of Milan, who were always honoured with little splendour and with an absence of ceremonial grandeur, even in some cases in a hasty and off-hand fashion. No notable innovations were reported nor were any burial places suited to becoming seats of dynastic memory created. Accounts of exequies are often lacking or marked by lacunae. The underlying reason for this low-level ceremonial observance was a matter of politics: the passing of the various dukes of Milan was always accompanied by fear that disorders and tumults would put in peril dynastic succession and the political security of the state. Also from this perspective signs of institutional fragility erupted which often rendered difficult the exercise of ducal authority in Renaissance Lombardy.

Between Visconti and Sforza : Notes on the Funeral Ceremonies of the Dukes of Milan in the Fifteenth Century / M.N. Covini (EUROPEAN FESTIVAL STUDIES: 1450–1700). - In: Princely Funerals in Europe 1400-1700 : Commemoration, Diplomacy, and Political Propaganda / [a cura di] M. Chatenet, M. Gaude-Ferragu, G. Sabatier. - Prima edizione. - Turnhout : Brepols, 2021. - ISBN 9782503587431. - pp. 123-139 [10.1484/M.EFS-EB.5.119156]

Between Visconti and Sforza : Notes on the Funeral Ceremonies of the Dukes of Milan in the Fifteenth Century

M.N. Covini
2021

Abstract

The two funeral ceremonies of the first duke of Milan Gian Galeazzo Visconti (1402, 1474) were characterized by sumptuousness and princely ambition, by the participation of huge numbers of guests and public, by celebration of the achievements of the deceased and the power of the dukedom, and by imitation of regal pomp with regard to corpse and burial. Nevertheless, these features were not repeated and imitated in the exequies of other fifteenth-century dukes of Milan, who were always honoured with little splendour and with an absence of ceremonial grandeur, even in some cases in a hasty and off-hand fashion. No notable innovations were reported nor were any burial places suited to becoming seats of dynastic memory created. Accounts of exequies are often lacking or marked by lacunae. The underlying reason for this low-level ceremonial observance was a matter of politics: the passing of the various dukes of Milan was always accompanied by fear that disorders and tumults would put in peril dynastic succession and the political security of the state. Also from this perspective signs of institutional fragility erupted which often rendered difficult the exercise of ducal authority in Renaissance Lombardy.
Ducato di Milano; funerali ducali; cerimonie e riti del potere; Rinascimento italiano
Settore M-STO/01 - Storia Medievale
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/822622
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