Monday, 28 July 2014

See the stars?

No, it is not a subtle (and incorrectly spelt) reference to this week’s equine activities in Galway, but rather a nod to the exquisite woodcuts in this edition of Dante Alighieri’s La comedia (Venice : Francesco Marcolini, 1544). Three full-page woodcuts mark the beginning of each book of the Divina commedia, with smaller woodcuts dispersed throughout, such as this delightful detail from canto 23 of Paradiso: 

Detail from: Paradiso, canto 23

Whilst the woodcuts are unsigned, it has been suggested that the item’s printer Francesco Marcolini may have been the artist. A contemporary and friend of Titian (approximately 1488-1576), he was himself an accomplished artist.
Inferno, canto 23

If you would like to view/ consult this item, please submit an online request or contact the staff of the Special Collections Reading Room in the Hardiman Research Building at

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