A book fit for a pope’s daughter (and a Dutch papal concubine)


Portrait of Pope Alexander VI. Painting locate...
Portrait of Pope Alexander VI. Painting located at Corridoio Vasariano (museum) in Florence (Firenze), Italy. Measures of painting: 59 x 44 cm. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


You can see some of the highlights of an exhibition based on three Renaissance books here (or in Florence). These are sumptuously illustrated and worth looking at for their pictures and decoration alone. One of them was prepared for Lucrezia Borgia, the daughter of Pope Alexander VI (one of the most notoriously dissolute figures in papal history). In the UK the Borgia family are enjoying a new celebrity courtesy of the recent TV series The Borgias (in which one of the pope’s mistresses is played by the Dutch actress Lotte Verbeek). Altrhough certainly not a documentary, the series is remarkably accurate about reasonably obscure facets of life in the papal court (someone has read the diary of Johann Burchard, Alexander VI’s Master of Ceremonies) and is directed by an Irishman.