Artibus et Historiae no. 67 (XXXIV)2013, ISSN 0391-9064
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DEBORAH HOWARD - Contextualising Titian's Sacred and Profane Love: The Cultural World of the Venetian Chancery in the Early Sixteenth Century (pp. 185-199)
This article looks at the cultural world of the élite public servants in the Ducal Chancery of Renaissance Venice, with a particular focus on the rôle of the Grand Chancellor. Positions in the Chancery were reserved for members of the cittadino class, a rank almost as exclusive as that of the hereditary ruling nobility. The essay briefly considers Alvise Dardani (Grand Chancellor, 1510–1511) and Gian Pietro Stella (Grand Chancellor, 1517–1523), before looking more closely at the dramatic career of Nicolò Aurelio (Grand Chancellor, 1523–1524), the supposed patron of Titian’s Sacred and Profane Love. The function of the picture is reviewed in the light of his controversial marriage to Laura Bagaroto, daughter of a Paduan traitor, and the subsequent rise and fall of his political fortunes.