A Renaissance Court: Milan under Galeazzo Maria Sforza by Gregory Lubkin

By Gregory Lubkin

Formidable, extravagant, innovative, and sexually infamous, Galeazzo Maria Sforza inherited the ducal throne of Milan in 1466, on the age of 22. even if his reign ended tragically purely ten years later, the younger prince's courtroom was once a dynamic neighborhood the place arts, coverage making, and the panoply of kingdom have been built-in with the rhythms and preoccupations of lifestyle. Gregory Lubkin explores this very important yet missed heart of strength, permitting the individuals of the Milanese courtroom to talk for themselves and exhibiting how dramatically Milan and its ruler exemplified the political, cultural, non secular, and monetary aspirations of Renaissance Italy.

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32 His relations with his Jewish subjects were generally cordial, and he carefully maintained their presence in his dominion. During Lent one year, the duke received complaints from Jews in Pavia about a preacher stirring up the populace to run them out of the city. "33 The Milanese dominion also attracted a large number of immigrants and transients, in part because of the strategic location of Milan on major trade routes between northern and southern Europe. Immigrants were attracted by the relatively tolerant policies of Milan's rulers, whose state showed both great economic vitality and reasonable political stability.

To facilitate that interaction, the prince's agents established and supervised the boundaries, entry points, structures, and activities of the court. The agents' actions were subject to the Page xiii prince's ultimate authority, but all persons at court acted according to their own understanding of their own interests. Such self-conscious princely courts did not develop automatically or "organically" around all rulers. Like gardens or cities, they had to be created and maintained with some deliberate effort if they were to remain distinct entities.

2 The ultimate base of the economy was agricultural, farming the rich lands of the great Po plain. Lombardy was essentially self-'sufficient in the production of food and most other staples. 3 The greatest wealth in this wealthy state, though, derived from the prosperous cities that had long been part of the Lombard landscape. Milan itself was one of the largest cities in Christendom, with thriving industries in armory and cloth manufacture as well as extensive trade. 4 Milan's markets were international; it had few rivals as a center for armor manufacture during the fifteenth century.

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