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December 24, 2003


I had my speakers turned up too loud when I clicked through to this Botticelli Mystic Nativity site.

At first inspection the painting appears to depict another typical Christmas scene, however it is loaded with symbolism and the millennial prophesies of Savonarola, the demagogic Dominican friar. The amazing accuracy of these prophesies brought him to power between the expulsion of the autocratic Medici family in 1494 and his ultimate overthrow and execution in 1498. He linked the French invasion of Italy in 1494 to the coming Apocalypse and, to ensure Florence's salvation he stressed the avoidance of worldly excess, lighting the original Bonfire of the Vanities.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at December 24, 2003 07:06 AM