Pietro Aretino: The Scourge of Princes

Imagine, if you will, a writer coarse and crass, bitingly satirical, outrageous, and, when the letters weren’t paying the bills, he’d dabble in a little (okay a lot) of blackmail. Even better, imagine if he was the son of an … Read More

A Florentine Arm’s Length

So… in Florence, pre 1860 (when all of Italy went metric), the length of stuff and things was tricky to measure consistently. Not that people just lived out their lives happy and free of the tyranny of meters…

The Polymath from Pisa’s Mum

Villa Basilica LigaDue, CC BY-SA 4.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0>, via Wikimedia Commons Galileo’s mum, Giulia di Cosimo Ammannati, was born in January 1538, in a tiny mountain village called Villa Basilica, in the province of Lucca, in the Tuscan region of Italy. … Read More

The Polymath from Pisa: Ancestors

So most of us have heard of Galileo… the father of modern science (well according to Einstein and Hawkins… and really they’d know, right?). Galileo is known as … well… Galileo. Like Michelangelo, Napoleon and Jesus, he doesn’t need a … Read More

Plague Water

The bubonic plague is still a thing. It occurs naturally on all continents except Australia, and there have been 50,000 human cases during the last 20 years, causing the World Health Organization to classify it as a re-emerging disease. Lucky … Read More

How To Bow

Back in Baroque days there was a lot of bowing, and it wasn’t even called bowing, it was called ‘a reverence.’ How to Reverence http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/caroso/images.html In “Rules for Dancing” (or Nobilta di Dame) written by Fabritio Caroso in 1600, we … Read More

What is The Baroque?

What is The Baroque? Well its a period, in history… a cultural period. By Johannes VermeerPublic Domain, Link Simply put, it comes after the Renaissance. Rubens, Rembrandt and Vermeer were a thing in the art world, as was Vivaldi in … Read More