|San Marco Convent (1440) is the former monastery of the Dominicans in Florence, Italy. It was commissioned by Cosimo the Elder Medici. The history of the cloisters, dormitories and cells is linked to Fra Angelico, Fra Bartolomeo and contoversial Friar Girolamo Savonarola. Friar Girolamo Savonarola was the Prior of the convent. The convent is a museum now. During the 15th century, it was the home of two famous Dominicans: the painter Fra Angelico and the preacher, Girolamo Savonarola. The convent’s library was built by Michelozzo. It has a famous collection of manuscripts.
The convent contains most of Fra Angelico’s work since he spent most of his life at San Marco. Two of may favorites are: “Last Judgment” (1432-35) and “The Annunciation” (1450). The annunciation is at the top of the stairs in San Marco.
Fra Bartolomeo’s portrait of “Savonarola” is shown in this post and is located in the Museum of San Marco. Girolamo Savonarola was an eloquent and persuasive Dominican priest and the perpetrator of a “Bonfire of the Vanities” in the Piazza della Signoria.
He used his puritanical influence to denounce decadent objects including art and books and encouraged Florentine residents to torch immoral objects that led to moral corruption. This was before the days of Sarbannes-Oxley and Enron.
The theocratic leader with an aversion for evil and dishonesty was ultimately hanged and burned in 1498 in Piazza della Signoria. There is a plaque commemorating this spot in Piazza Della Signoria.
This is a great Vino con Vista Site in Florence. When you admire his portrait in the Dominican convent of San Marco that was painted by Fra Bartolomeo in 1498 look at the Latin inscription. It says: “Portrait of the Prophet Jerome of Ferrara, sent by God.”
Dr. Eveann Lovero writes Travel Guides to Italy and
To learn more about Italian art and history visit www.vino-con-vista.com
Tag Archives: Annunciation
The Basilica of Santa Maria Sopra Minerva was built above the ruins of a temple to honor the goddess Minerva that was built by Gnaeus Pompey the Great around 50 B.C. to honor his Asian victories. The basilica is located in Piazza della Minerva. On the right side of the facade of the basilica look for inscriptions that mark the flooding of the Tiber River between 1422 and 1870 because this is the lowest point in Rome and was subject to frequent flooding. Some of the Tiber flood waters rose to as high as 65 feet.
The Dominicans began construction on the gothic church in 1280 and used Santa Maria Novella in Florence as their model. Above the main doorway’s triangular pediment is the coat of arms of the Dominican Pope St. Pius V (1566-1572)
Look for the trusty map inside the church to help you identify the key artwork in the basilica. In front of the altar you will find a staue of St. John the Baptist by Giuseppe Obici (1858) on the right and Michelangelo’s ”Risen Christ the Redeemer” on the Left.
- The churches of Rome (hotair.com)
Saint Catherine of Siena is also buried in the Basilica beneath the main altar; although her head is in the church of San Domenico in Siena. The monument was created by Isaia da Pisa in 1430. In 1939, Saint Catherine and Saint Francis of Assisi were proclaimed principal patrons of Italy and she was also proclaimed a Doctor of the Church in 1970.
Visit the Carafa Chapel of Saint Thomas Aquinas with beautiful frescoes by Filippino Lippi. I love the scene that depicts St. Thomas presenting Cardinal Carafa to the Blessed Virgin. The relics of St. Thomas were kept in this chapel until 1511, when they were moved to Naples.
In the Chapel dedicated to the Annunciation you can admire the “Annunciation” painting by Antoniazzo Romano. The Virgin is shown giving dowries to young girls who are kneeling with Cardinal Juan de Torquemada. The cardinal is buried nearby.
Dr. EveAnn Lovero writes Travel Guides about Italy. To learn more about Rome visit www.vino-con-vista.com