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Title: Orvieto and its cathedral : the city, the curia and the artistic context
Author: Salonius, Pippa
ISNI:       0000 0004 2703 1202
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2007
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Orvieto was a place of popes in the second half of the thirteenth century. Urban IV, Gregory X, Martin IV, Nicholas IV and Boniface VIII all held court there. The pope and his numerous entourage made what was essentially a modest hill top town of artisans and feudal nobility, a magnet for men of wealth and culture. Its Gothic cathedral, which still houses one of the most renowned eucharistic relics in Christendom, was conceived in this cosmopolitan atmosphere. Its façade iconography addressed both intellectuals and less educated members of the Orvietan populace. This thesis begins by examining the geographic and political environment which contributed to the realisation of one of Italy's great Gothic cathedrals. Comparisons between the architectural structure of the Cathedral in Orvieto and Roman basilicas are followed by an examination of its western façade in relation to possible iconographic sources deriving from a broader European context. The unusual technical combination of sculpted reliefs, their possible polychromatic finish and its combination with mosaic and bronze work on the façade is also object of discussion. A comprehensive reading of the medieval cathedral within its socio-political environment is encouraged. It was not a separate entity, but a functioning structure in constant rapport with its surroundings. In this light an analysis is performed of Orvieto's parish churches, convents and monasteries, the orders which administered them and the religious rituals which involved them. The presence of the Papal Court in Orvieto is reflected in the city's memory, primarily in the sophisticated architecture and decoration of its cathedral, but also in the works of art its members left behind them.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: NA Architecture