Votive Panels and Popular Piety in Early Modern Italy

Votive Panels and Popular Piety in Early Modern Italy

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In the late fifteenth century, votive panel paintings, or tavolette votive, began to accumulate around reliquary shrines and miracle-working images throughout Italy. Although often dismissed as popular art of little aesthetic consequence, more than 1,500 panels from the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries are extant, a testimony to their ubiquity and importance in religious practice. Humble in both their materiality and style, they represent donors in prayer and supplicants petitioning a saint at a dramatic moment of crisis. In this book, Fredrika H. Jacobs traces the origins and development of the use of votive panels in this period. She examines the form, context and functional value of votive panels, and considers how they created meaning for the person who dedicated them as well as how they accrued meaning in relationship to other images and objects within a sacred space activated by practices of cultic culture.show more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 66 b/w illus. 8 colour illus.
  • 113914944X
  • 9781139149440

Review quote

'Jacobs writes beautifully ... through her nuanced investigation of early modern (and current) terminology, she has greatly expanded our understanding of the complex, dynamic relationships of word, image, and piety by means of these little known tavolette and their myriad contexts. The book is a notable contribution to scholarship on sanctity, miraculous images, and the attendant practices of votive donation.' Barbara Wisch, Renaissance Quarterlyshow more

Table of contents

1. Dialogues of devotion: an introduction; 2. Tavolette votive: form, function, context; 3. Determining functional value: attestations of fact and faith; 4. Narrative modes; 5. Signs of faith, signs of superstition.show more