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Wax, wood and narrative: the miraculous culture of Renaissance Italy

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This talk is open to the public and may be podcast

From the late fifteenth century, the walls of Italian shrines became crowded with tavolette dipinte – small painted wooden boards recording instances of sickness, violence, accidents, natural disasters and demonic possession, and attesting to the miraculous intervention of the Virgin Mary and other saints. Dr Laven shall explore the significance of this new cultural form and contextualize the appeal of pictorial ex votos with reference both to grander trends in Renaissance art and to the simultaneous rise of the printed miracle book. Thus, she will shed new light on neglected forms of religious creativity and to investigate the role of narrative in fuelling devotional renewal before Trent.

This talk is part of the Wolfson College Humanities Society talks series.

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