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Cooperation and Collaboration in Vicenza before Palladio: Jacopo Sansovino and the Pedemuro Masters at the High Altar of the Cathedral of Vicenza Author(s): Manuela Morresi and Dorothy Hay Reviewed work(s): Source: Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 55, No. 2 (Jun., 1996), pp. 158-177 Published by: University of California Press on behalf of the Society of Architectural Historians Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/991118 . Accessed: 18/10/2012 08:02 Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of Use, available at . http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp . JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new forms of scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact [email protected]. . University of California Press and Society of Architectural Historians are collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians. http://www.jstor.org

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Cooperation and Collaboration in Vicenza before Palladio: Jacopo Sansovino and the PedemuroMasters at the High Altar of the Cathedral of VicenzaAuthor(s): Manuela Morresi and Dorothy HayReviewed work(s):Source: Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 55, No. 2 (Jun., 1996), pp.158-177Published by: University of California Press on behalf of the Society of Architectural HistoriansStable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/991118 .Accessed: 18/10/2012 08:02

Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of Use, available at .http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp

.JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range ofcontent in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new formsof scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact [email protected].


University of California Press and Society of Architectural Historians are collaborating with JSTOR todigitize, preserve and extend access to Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians.


Page 2: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

Cooperation and Collaboration in

Vicenza before Palladio Jacopo Sansovino and the Pedemuro Masters at the High Altar of the Cathedral of Vicenza

MANUELA MORRESI, Istituto Universitario di Architettura, Venice

Andrea Palladio created his own myth, and the Quattro Libri,

published in 1570, was his first step.' It was as if

publication waited only for the death ofJacopo Sansovino, the

last of those masters whom Palladio regarded with great interest during his formative years, and from whom he derived

much of his inspiration.2 But in the Proemio to the Quattro Libri

there is no mention of Palladio's own formation. Moreover, the

exclusion of contemporary or immediately preceding sources

leaves only a parsimonious sprinkle of names of the major architects from the earlier half of the sixteenth century.3 In

short, the image that Palladio passes down to the judgment of

posterity is that of a born architect.

In calling upon a natural inclination toward architecture, the

only guides he recognizes are the ancient buildings of Rome

and the writings of Vitruvius: Palladio sets aside those sixteen

long and obscure years spent as Andrea di Pietro della Gon-

dola, in the Vicenza workshop of the Pedemuro masters,

Giovanni da Porlezza and Girolamo Pittoni da Lumignano. Palladio the architect seems to spring, with his epic name, like

Pallas Athena from the head of Zeus, armed to win a place

among the immortals on Olympus. By 1570, moreover, no one

was left to contradict him-neither the Vicenza craftsmen nor

the early patrons, not even Giangiorgio Trissino, who doubtless

played the part of midwife at the mythical birth. Thus, just as

the plans presented in the Quattro Libri are free of "such

incidents as will happen," so he presents himself without

historical lineage, unmarked by his own time and his own

experience.4 Thus sown, the myth of Palladio's self-invention has found

fertile ground. Among its products, nurtured by Vicenza's own

status as subject state to Venice, has been the so-called vicentini-

tas of Palladio.5 The earliest stages in this version of the myth can be seen in Paolo Gualdo's biography of Palladio and in

Ottavio Bertotti Scamozzi's collection of Palladian buildings.6 It

is also to be seen in the belated Palladianization of Vicenza

undertaken by Ottone Calderari (1730-1803). In obliterating the Gothic past, Calderari's buildings helped reinforce the role

of Palladio himself in the invention of an image of Vicenza

estranged from its roots.7 Later, alterations were also carried

out on sixteenth-century buildings to give them a Palladian

veneer. Giangiorgio Trissino's villa at Cricoli, for example, was

altered at the end of the eighteenth and the beginning of the

nineteenth century so that today it bears false witness to a

precocious and autonomous design by the young Andrea. This

operation has complicated any attempt to establish a more

plausible design history for the classical facade of this suburban

dwelling. One school of contemporary criticism, nurtured by the myth

of Palladio, has sought to find his hand in works from the

workshop of the Pedemuro masters-works datable between

the end of the 1530s and the early 1540s. This school of

criticism has attempted to attribute designs for the doorway of

the Servite Church in Vicenza, for example, and for the

immediately subsequent doorway of Girolamo Trissino's house

in Contra' Santo Stefano, to Palladio, crediting only their

execution to the Pedemuro workshop.8 This effort to identify the heroic figure of Vicenza's architect in these modest works

flies in the face of sixteenth-century shop practice; it would have

been very unlikely for an apprentice, even one as gifted as

Palladio, to have provided the design. More probable in both

cases is the participation, more or less directly, of Michele

Sanmicheli, already in Vicenza to advise on the reconstruction

of the loggia of the Palazzo della Ragione at the beginning of

the 1540s. Ties between Sanmicheli and the Pedemuro masters

are well documented. He was their guest during his stay in

Vicenza in 1542, and the young Andrea di Pietro showed him

the respect owing a master. In one instance, he copied an

invention "after that which Messer Michele has drawn."9 For

the Servite doorway, more rugged in both its proportions and

its details, attribution to Sanmichele is less certain; at best it may be a none-too-faithful copy based on his model. But in the

elegance of the Trissino doorway Sanmicheli's hand would

seem to be at work. The fluted, tapering Doric pilasters, surmounted by capitals with rosettes, and the entablature with a

smooth frieze and guttae on the lintel follow the anticanonical

model of the Balbi Crypt in Rome [Figure 2]. Sanmicheli's

predilection for compressed Doric entablatures, used repeat-

edly in the Palazzo Roncali, Rovigo, in the inner part of the

158 JSAH / 55:2, JUNE 1996

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enbJV,lleC o!lanjnVo J|le 'lBPpaqle eZUe:!A : I 3J'nDld

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FIGURE 2: Doorway of the house of Girolamo Trissino, Vicenza, attributed to Michele

Sanmicheli; detail of the Doric capital and lintel

Porta Nuova, and in the Porta Palio, Verona, is well known.

There is one further proof, albeit indirect, of contact between

Sanmicheli and Girolamo Trissino, in a document dealing with

the reconstruction of the loggias in the Palazzo della Ragione. In 1541, on the occasion of his earliest consultation with

Sanmicheli, it was Girolamo Trissino who, with Vincenzo

Garzadori, superintended the building, and thus was respon- sible for paying the architect his salary. 0

Palladio's part in planning the high altar in Vicenza cathe-

dral, a work begun in 1534 on commission ofAurelio Dall'Acqua,

represents another problematic issue [Figure 1]. The structure

of the altar itself is that of a triumphal arch, with pairs of

Composite columns, freestanding and fluted, on high pedestals. Behind them, pilasters flank a central arch over the tabernacle, while the altar table itself is an extension of the upper level of

the pedestals. The entablature juts out considerably along its

entire length, corresponding to the columns, and is crowned at

each extremity with a golden ball. Above the single central

sector is an attic story corresponding with the arch immediately below. It is bounded by a hybrid order and terminated by an

attic-story crown. The articulation of the architectural structure

is unclear; it seems suffocated and weakened by excessive

ornament. Fine marbles and semiprecious stones cover the

entire surface, apart from the columns and the altar table. Even

the pilaster shafts are covered. This is a true example of

architectural horror vacui. The distinctive form of the architec-

ture-something novel in Vicenza at that time-becomes a

sort of framework for the decoration in an inversion of the usual

relationship between structure and ornament, to the advantage of the latter and the decided disadvantage of the former.

Giangiorgio Zorzi and Franco Barbieri have both attributed

the Dall'Acqua altar to Palladio, and their attributions have

been upheld by Lionello Puppi and Renato Cevese, who

suggest that the planning of the altar may have come about

under the influence ofSanmicheli.1l Puppi sees specific similari-

ties between the triumphal arch form of the altar and the

monumental doorway of the Palazzo del Podesta, Verona, which is composed of a combination of pilasters and half

columns, and in whose attic story there is a triangular pedi- ment.

Documentation of the Dall'Acqua altar abounds, but the

evidence has not been adequately discussed and evaluated, and

so far the altar has not been submitted to any close architectural

analysis.12 This kind of analysis is essential to reconstructing the

Palladian curriculum vitae. In fact, in seems unlikely that Palla-

dio at the time this design was presented, would have been able

to handle the classical idiom with ease. He was young and far

from his first encounter with Rome. Yet it should also be noted

that the altar is a work that calls on so much experience of

classicism that it is difficult to think of it as an independent creation of the Pedemuro masters, who were not completely familiar with this architectural language. Finally, how can we

reconcile this work with Vicentine taste at the time? It may be

useful to submit the Dall'Acqua altar to a test, to separate Vicenza from the Palladian hegemony and to construct a

scenario in which the dominion of an individual is replaced, at

least for the historical period we are referring to, by a more

plausible and possibly more interesting range of trends and

protagonists. On 17 March 1534, Aurelio Dall'Acqua, doctor of law

utriusque iure, knight and count palatine, signed a contract with

the Pedemuro masters to build a monumental altar, dedicated

to Corpus Christi and intended for the cathedral, for a payment of 400 gold ducats.'3 On the altar there was to be a dedication

to Dall'Acqua, who would be buried at its foot. This donation of

a magnificent object of the Christian rite combined religious celebration with celebration of the fame and virtues of the

donor. This is made evident by the position and the size of the

family coats of arms, which filled the spaces between the pairs of

pilasters. In other words, Dall'Aqua was demonstrating that he

had the mentality of the humanist aristocrat, indissolubly

binding public patronage and private exaltation.14

The contract contains a series of stipulations about the form

and decoration of the altar. It was to be realized "following the

form of the model or the drawing on parchment by them [the Pedemuro masters] that has been given to the above-named

Signor Aurelio."15 But this drawing was not sufficient basis to

start work. The contract continues: "not having been able to

put in the drawing the valuable stones which are to be set, they have agreed that great care has to be taken in setting them, and

that beforehand they should be set on large panels of wood or

cardboard. The arrangment of the stones should be drawn on

these sheets under the eye of the aforesaid master."16 The

drawing, then, seems to involve only an architectural structure, and as of 17 March 1534, no proposal seems to have been

160 JSAH / 55:2, JUNE 1996

Page 5: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

prepared for the ornamentation which is, as we have seen, an

integral, not to say predominant, part of the composition. Here it should be pointed out that the marbles and the

stones that ornament the altar all came from the personal collection ofAurelio Dall'Acqua. Worried about damage during the construction work, he gave precise instructions that they were to be transferred to the site only at the last moment and that they were to be applied "with glue or with plaster as they do in Venice with similar works."17 This specification calls to mind, for example, the scroll-facade of the church of Sta. Maria dei Miracoli by the Lombardo, or the facade of Ca' Dario, both in

Venice, but also later works, such as the high altar of the church of San Rocco, Venice.

The "wood or cardboard" (tavoloni over cartoni) required of the Pedemuro masters could be 1:1 scale drawings suitable for

studying the placing of the stones. And, in fact, on the actual

altar, they do appear to have been arranged with an extremely acute sense of composition and color symmetry. Nonetheless, the decorative design seems to be independent of the architec- ture. This explains the separation of design phases in the terms of the contract.18 The wording suggests a break between

preliminary studies for the architectural structure of the altar and the Pedemuro masters' decorative work: "Desiring, in order to finish this work, stoneworkers of worth who know how to lay and distribute the precious stones to be set on the altar, in an orderly manner, and having heard that in our city master Giovanni and Girolamo, stoneworkers living in the contrada of Pedemuro, are the best...."19 So it would seem likely that Aurelio Dall'Acqua was looking for experts in decorative stone- work for his altar, not an architect. What also seems to emerge is that he did not know the two Pedemuro masters directly, but that he had been told of their qualifications. The Pedemuro masters, therefore, could have acted as executors of someone else's concept, intervening only at the stage of applying the surface ornament and overseeing the execution of the work. To

proceed from this to identifying who might have been respon- sible for the architectural design, however, it will be necessary to focus on specific points of architectural language in the altar and to try to define the vocabulary with which they have their

greatest affinity. The proposal for a classical triumphal structure, though it

would have been known in Venice, was a great novelty for Vicenza in the 1530s. Works such as the monumental entrance to the Arsenal, dating from as early as 1457, had no visible

repercussions in Vicenza, resistant as it was to new architectural ideas.20 The only earlier work in Vicenza that is in any way comparable is the Garzadori altar in Sta. Corona. This altar was erected in the early years of the century on commission of Battista Gratiani, newly returned from a pilgrimage to Jerusa- lem. The likeness with the Dall'Acqua altar is only superficial, however, residing in the colored stones and marblework; the

elements of the Sta. Corona altar do not belong to the legitimate vocabulary of the architectural orders.21 Richness and variety in the composition are obtained here through a deformed, and deforming, vision, apparent in the columns, which are interrupted two-thirds of the way up their shafts by a sort of swollen cushion, and, in the squat proportions of the pilasters with their widened capitals. The overall ef- fect is undoubtedly a pastiche, late medieval in flavor, and makes improbable any direct assimilation of a triumphal arch motif. The Dall'Acqua altar, on the other hand, speaks a language that is completely Roman, and a series of stylistic signs allow us to identify its classical models. Let us begin with the unusual articulation of the bases, which Cevese describes as "abnormal and to tell the truth, not beautiful, [being] without anything comparable in classical architecture" [Figure 3].22 These are formed by a succession of torus, scotia, and double cavetto, then a large cyma reversa, torus, and plinth. In fact, an example from classical architecture, different only in the form of the cyma, is seen in the kind of base Giuliano da Sangallo draws repeatedly, both in his Taccuino Senese and in his Libro Grande [Figure 4].23 This is the base called a termine ("at the baths"), referring probably to the Baths of Diocletian. The form and position of the moldings in Giuliano's bases differ from those of the Dall'Acqua altar only in having a cyma recta.

The bases of the columns on the Dall'Acqua altar reappear, obviously, on their corresponding pilasters and these are further connected by an extension of their moldings along the wall (see Figure 3). This motif derives from the triumphal arch repertoire: it is to be seen in the Sergi arch at Pola, in the Argentari Arch in Rome, and at the Arch of Trajan at Ben- evento. It gives a dignity to neutral expanses of wall which is necessary to an architectural order. The same element can be seen also in the atrium of the Pantheon in Rome, where the walls become legible, through extension of the pilaster bases, as a kind of "triumphalized" wall. This motif was also used through the Middle Ages.Joined pilasters appear in fact on two of the major Romanesque monuments in Florence-in the second order on the facade of S. Miniato al Monte and in the scarsella and the outer part of the attic story in the Baptistery of San Giovanni, proof of the tangible link between Florence and the Roman model of the Pantheon.24 Linking up the bases of pilasters was common in the fifteenth century in Tuscany and Tuscan-influenced works.25 Leon Battista Alberti used this technique in his Doric order in Palazzo Rucellai, Florence, thus showing how well he understood the Tuscan character of the motif.26 It is not surprising to find the same solution used by Bernardo Rossellino in the Palazzo Piccolomini, Pienza, and to come across it time and again in the work of Giuliano da Sangallo, who employed it in his designs for the facade of S. Lorenzo in Florence.27 But before Giuliano took up this motif,


Page 6: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

FIGURE 3: Altar of Aurelio Dall'Acqua, detail of the bases of the columns and the pilasters

it was being used in the Veneto. Mauro Codussi used it on the

facade of S. Michele in Isola (1468), probably deriving it, along with the entire organization of the facade, from the Palazzo

Rucellai or its Rossellino interpretation in Pienza. From that

date on, it becomes a typical element in Venetian architecture

of the late fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries and appears in

buildings in the style of Mauro Codussi and Pietro Lombardo

alike, as the stonemasons of the time migrated from one

workshop to another.28

The Composite capitals on the Dall'Acqua altar have only one row of acanthus leaves below the echinus with ovoli from

which the volutes spring [Figure 5]. This was not a common

practice, although not unknown, in Florence. One of the half

columns in the apse of S. Miniato al Monte has a capital of the

same kind. Composite capitals with one row of acanthus leaves

were also part of the Venetian repertoire, or at least dating from

the example realized by Tullio Lombardo in 1512 on the wall

altar in the Zen chapel in S. Marco.29

The treatment of the entablature of the Dall'Acqua altar,

projecting markedly over the columns, is an all but standard

example of triumphal arch architecture and, more generally, it

approaches those classical prototypes of structures with free-

standing colonnades exemplified by the Septizonium, as repre-

sented by Giuliano da Sangallo, or the so-called colonnacce of

the Forum of Nerva.30 The balls above the terminal sections of

the entablature and of the attic story hark back to the architec-

tural dialect of the Veneto. A similar decoration makes Gugli- emo de' Grigi's interpretation of the triumphal arch in the

Portello Gate in Padua uncertain. It is used once again and by the same Bergamo master in the Emiliani chapel in S. Michele

in Isola, Venice.

More problematic are the sources of the crown of the attic

story [Figure 6]. Something similar to this Vicenza attic story is

found in a late medieval precedent, Lorenzo Ghiberti's martyrs'

sarcophagus, now in the Bargello Museum, Florence, and thus

another Tuscan element is added to this visual catalogue. A

drawing in the taccuino of Oreste Vannoccio Biringucci further

confirms the Florentine character of this motif. Starting from

what is probably an Albertian idea for the tribune of the

church of SS. Annunziata in Florence, he in fact gives a

triumphal structure to the whole, which, as Puppi rightly

points out, is very near to that of the altar in Vicenza cathedral.

The crowning piece of the central sector actually forms a

termination similar to that of the altar in Vicenza.31 The same

motif appears, still in Florence, in the crown of the Borgherini

chimneypiece, the work of Baccio d'Agnolo and Benedetto da

162 JSAH / 55:2, JUNE 1996

Page 7: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

Rovezzano.32 But a classical origin, or, more correctly, an ori-

gin in some classical fantasy, is to be seen in the drawings of

Giuliano da Sangallo, who adopted a similar form in repre-

senting the temple of Augustus at Pozzuoli, where he super-

imposed an acroterium in the form of a mixtilinear scaly crown.33 Even the elevation of the attic story in the center

section is a Sangallo trademark. Starting from the model for U

281A, for the facade of S. Lorenzo in Florence, this idea can be

seen time and again in Tuscany, from Jacopo Sansovino's

version of that same fa?ade to Michelangelo's preliminary studies.34

Preliminary analysis of the Dall'Acqua altar, then, has re-

vealed that classical references are linked to elements from

Florentine architectural practice. Some elements, however, derive from Venice and the Veneto. Thus, given these mixed

origins, it would be as well to examine what might have been

the channels of diffusion that led to Vicenza.

The most problematic of these elements is the termination

of the attic story. In the 1530s, in the same decade as plans for

FIGURE 5: Altar of Aurelio Dall'Acqua, detail of capital

FIGURE 4: Giuliano da Sangallo, sketch of a base in the Baths of Diocletian, Rome.

Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, Codice Vaticano Barberiniano Latino 4424, f.70v.

this altar, the mixtilinear form of truncated triangle appears

repeatedly in Spain, and particularly in association with the

imperial figure. Pedro Machuca alternates triangular pedi- ments with attic crowns over the windows of the piano nobile on

the western facade of Charles V's palace at Granada. The same

form is taken up by Diego de Siloe for the windows on the side

of Granada cathedral. One significant precedent for both

Granada examples is the crown of the chimneypiece in the Sala

di Psiche in the Palazzo Te in Mantua, decorated 1526-1528.

What is curious about the Mantua example is that, above the

crown, as a support for the gigantic feet of the figure of

Polyphemus, is a scaly element which recalls the motif adopted, or invented, by Giuliano di Sangallo in his drawing of the

Pozzuoli temple.35

Finding this solution in both Mantua and Granada lends

strength to Manfredo Tafuri's hypothesis that Giulio was

involved in the design of Charles Vs palace.36 Furthermore, the

interpretation of the raised crown as an imperial symbol seems

to be confirmed by a singular coincidence. Drawings for the

temporary triumphal structures set up in Bruges in 1515 for

the entry of Charles V into the town show steep, truncated roofs

with windows on one single arch and one triple one. These echo

the kind of roof typical of residential building in northern


Page 8: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

FIGURE 6: Altar of Aurelio Dall'Acqua, entablature and attic zone

Europe, blending in with the local architecture.37 All in all, therefore, these roofs are legible as arches with attic crowns, where the pitch of the roof occupies the space of the attic story. Let us consider the places and the circumstances in which this

type of attic appears and reappears. Triumphal arches with attic crowns were designed by Perino del Vaga for the first entry of Charles V into Genoa in 1529, and these were repeated, with variants, for the entry in 1533.38 Two years later, at Messina, the

emperor was to pass beneath a similarly formed arch, designed by Polidoro da Caravaggio [Figure 7], and the arch for Philip II at Ghent was of the same type.39 The codification of this motif and its diffusion on a larger scale was to come only with the

publication of Sebastiano Serlio's Quarto Libro (1534).40 The element that crowns the high altar in Vicenza cathedral

was not entirely new to the Veneto. The chapter doorway of the Ionic cloister at S. Giorgio Maggiore in Venice is crowned by the same element, probably designed in the 1530s and of uncertain attribution.41 A similar motif suggests authorship by Guglielmo de' Grigi. It appears no less than three times in the Emiliani

chapel in S. Michele in Isola in slightly different versions, and it comes up again in the high altar of S. Salvador and in the side door of S. Francesco della Vigna in the form of counterposed, elongated volutes, converging upward.42 These are typical cases of the easy and evasive manner of this Bergamo master,

blandly dissolving classicizing elements into joking linguistic distortions. But the thinness of the moldings and the propor- tions of the decorative elements make crowns of this kind

incompatible with that on the altar at Vicenza. A form similar to that of the Vicenza altar, on a grander scale, is to be found on the upper levels of the facade of Vicenza cathedral itself and, in fact, constitutes the crown [Figure 8].43 The termination of the altar would seem to reiterate, on a smaller scale, the upper part of the facade of the cathedral that houses it and thus might be ascribed to a specification from Dall'Acqua. But its association with a triumphal arch is unlikely to be casual. An exploration into the character of the patron and recognition of the program that underlies the altar will yield further clues.

The Dall'Acqua family, which probably originated in Lodi, appears in Vicenza from at least the thirteenth century. Daniele

Dall'Acqua, Aurelio's father, a lawyer with humanist interests of his own, possessed a considerable library, according to an

inventory taken at the time of his death.44 His son Aurelio studied law at Padua and then set to building a modest political career. He officiated several times as the vicario of the Podesta of Padua and of Verona and repeatedly as deputy ad utilia in Vicenza. What seems to be missing from his curriculum is a post that would have given him a position within the Vicenza

oligarchy.45 In 1509 he took part in the procession to greet

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Emperor Maximilian in Vicenza, but during the war of the

League of Cambrai, he fled with his wife, Lucia da Schio, to

Venice and settled in the area ofSta. Gustina (in confinio Sanctae

Justinae). It is there that Lucia wrote her will, dated 20 October

1513, asking that her mortal remains be kept in the church of S.

Francesco della Vigna while waiting for a final burial, after the

war, in her native city.46 In 1523 Andrea Gritti was elected doge. He had been capitano da terra in the years in which Venice won

back her dominion, and in the delegation sent from Vicenza to

pay him homage were the orator Giangiorgio Trissino and the

knight Aurelio Dall'Acqua. These two must have been more

than casual acquaintances because in 1534 they were sent once

again to Venice to represent Vicenza. In fact often through the

1530s we find Aurelio Dall'Acqua on missions to Venice.47

These are the years of the design and construction of the altar

in the cathedral.

Little has come to light about Dall'Acqua's Venetian con-

tacts, but the names of Pietro Bembo, the Franciscan Francesco

Zorzi, and Andrea Gritti crop up in his letters. Bembo had

shown Dall'Acqua approval and esteem in a letter of 1529.48

Zorzi, in a long and impassioned letter of December 1532 to

Dall'Acqua, commented on the latter's magnum opus, the

Catena Evangelica, written for his two sisters, nuns in the convent

of Sta. Chiara.49 This work is a synchronic rewriting, in Latin, of

the four Gospels. It is organized into 234 misteria (lengthy

FIGURE 7: Polidoro da Caravaggio, study for a triumphal arch for the entry of Charles V

into Messina

analogical chapters, literally "mysteries") in which the prophe- cies of the Old Testament are called upon to confirm the New


Zorzi, the Franciscan humanist who also wrote the memoriale

for Jacopo Sansovino's design for the church of S. Francesco

della Vigna in Venice, read Dall'Acqua's text at the order of the

government of the Serenissima. It was thus a matter of an

official duty, perhaps solicited by the doge himself.50 Zorzi's

commentary on the Catena is warm and enthusiastic. He writes

that this reunification of the four gospels is legitimate in that

they all come from the one source, as indeed is true of the four

rivers of Paradise; and the theme of the water of salvation, the

fount of eternal life, is taken up again and again as a tribute to

Aurelio's surname, Dall'Acqua. "With this reunification," Zorzi

writes, "even if others at various times have attempted it, nonetheless they did not reach that same concord (concinnitate) that you, inspired by the Holy and Harmonic Spirit, have

reached." The result "eliminates the apparent contradictions in

the Gospels... [and] in its resonance is a perpetual concert to

the ears of all who read and listen."51

References to "harmony," or concinnitas, in the Catena are

typical parts of Zorzi's vocabulary and found their way into the

inspirational language of Andrea Gritti as well.52 It was Gritti

who granted the text its printing rights and, in doing so, commented favorably on its structure and content. The patri- arch of Venice, Girolamo Querini, too, when asked for an

opinion on the text, came forth with a positive judgment.53 Around the modest figure of this Vicentine patrician, therefore, we find outstanding exponents of the Venetian humanistic and

administrative oligarchy.54 The provisional burial of Lucia da

Schio in S. Francesco della Vigna in fact shows that a link

existed even then with the Minor Friars ofVenice, and these are

just the years in which Aurelio, exiled in Venice, began to set out

the elements of his Catena Evangelica; Zorzi could hardly not

have had something to do with its creation, above all in the

organization of the work in misteria. The preference accorded to

the observant Franciscans, after all, is confirmed not only by

Dall'Acqua's two sisters' taking the veil in the order of Saint

Clare, but also his being first among the founders of the

convent at S. Francesco Nuovo in Vicenza.55

Lionello Puppi has associated Francesco Zorzi's alchemical

interests with Aurelio Dall'Acqua's extraordinary collection of

stones-an insight supported by Manfredo Tafuri, who sug-

gested that the collection was organized following Zorzi's De

Harmonia Mundi Totius.56 In such an environment, then, it is

not surprising to find, in the 1539 inventory ofAurelio's library, not only this work but also Zorzi's In Sacram Scripturam Prob-

lemata. Moreover, Dall'Acqua's library, in addition to predict- able works such as Opera Platonis and De Christiana Religione by Marsilio Ficino, contained books by Giovanni Pico della Miran-

dola and by Giovan Francesco Pico. Further, he possessed


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FIGURE 8: Vicenza cathedral, upper levels of the


works by the Dutch humanist Erasmus, including one on the

Gospels.57 His interest in Erasmus's interpretations of the

Scriptures, censured by the Sorbonne in 1529, was strong. No other contemporary writer in this inventory has four tites to his

name, and among the classic authors, the most mentioned is St.

Augustine, a significant choice as he is also one of Erasmus's most important sources.58

Even though the Catena Evangelica was written in Latin,

Dall'Acqua had a keen interest in vernacular translations of sacred texts. He owned what the inventory describes as liber actium apostolorum vulgaris (The Acts of the Apostles in the

vulgate) and Evangelia vulgaria (Evangelists in the vulgate)

perhaps the earliest Italian translation of the Gospels published in Venice by Antonio Brucioli in 1530. This is one of the texts

which, along with his translation of and commentary on the

Bible, led to Brucioli's denunciation in 1548, his trial for heresy in 1555, and his imprisonment in1558.59 The title that follows in Aurelio Dall'Acqua's inventory is Annotationes Antonij brutioli

(Annotations ofAntonio Brucioli), a scriptural commentary and

not, as Giovanni Zaupa suggests, a juvenile philosophical work.60 Brucioli's work relies heavily on Erasmus's published translation of Scripture.61 One last book in the Dall'Acqua inventory should be mentioned: this is the Conclusiones Vincentij Querini (Conclusions ofVincenzo Querini) which comes near to the core of Venetian reformational culture, of which Querini was one of the most significant representatives. Thus, Aurelio

Dall'Acqua stands at the outer limits of heterodoxy, rather than

tending towards heresy, and particularly close to Catholic Reformation evangelism, with its devotion to Erasmus.

Did Dall'Acqua actually belong to such circles? The best

evidence is found in two lines from the letter sent to him by Francesco Zorzi, lines which make clear his position on these matters: "Because the only announcement (the Gospel) has

been harshly turned into a prescriptive and punitive law, with

neither salvation, norjustification: as Paul says in Romans 3, no

one is justified by the law."62 These words recall the issue of

justification by faith, a doctrine at the heart of Reformation

polemics. The letter ends with an appeal: "Thus, my dear

Aurelio, I shall turn to all men of the Gospel, for whose

consolation you have worked, and I shall say, 'Men of the

Gospel, read the whole Gospel, brought into concerted har-

mony.' 63 This insistent exhortation to the men of the Gospel

(evangelici viri) suggests that Zorzi, and with him Dall'Acqua,

actually belonged to those groups of evangelical Catholics who were caught up in Erasmian speculation.64

Finally, there is a long letter of 1532 from Francesco Marino

Veneto, a Franciscan theologian, in praise of the Catena Evan-

gelica. Veneto expressed approval for the work and sustained its

arguments with further philosophical references.65 Between 1543 and 1550, Veneto, the so-called Erasmian Inquisitor, took

part in the Venetian Court of Inquisition, even intervening in the Brucioli case in an attempt to acquit him. That he formed

part of the Venetian Court of Inquisition, however, did not save him from coming under inquisition himself. In 1555 he would

be called to answer to the charge of having authorized publica- tion of one of Erasmus's works.66 But in the early 1530s, many varieties of religious practice and opinion were still permitted.67

Despite the ruling nulla osta ("no opposition") from the

Republic, from the papacy, and from the Emperor between

1532 and 1533, the Catena Evangelica was never to be printed, though this cannot be explained completely by Dall'Acqua's death in 1539.68 Perhaps its mystical (and mysterious) interpre- tation of Holy Writ made publication inadvisable, or perhaps there was a shift in Dall'Acqua's religious interests from the text to the altar of the Sacrament. From 1534, Dall'Acqua seems to have favored the altar, laden with the stones from his collection,

166 JSAH / 55:2, JUNE 1996

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to perpetuate his memory and testify to his faith. And the dissonance between Aurelio's self-celebratory program and the condemnation in which the adherents of reform culture held

sumptuous funeral monuments in the churches once again

brings out the ambiguity of his religious persuasions. No reconstruction of the personality of Aurelio Dall'Acqua

can leave out his repeated appearance by the side of Giangior- gio Trissino, and, as a signal example, his part in the delegation from Vicenza on the occasion of the congratulatory oration to Gritti in 1523. This relationship could be seen as expressing a

pro-imperial political tendency on the part of Dall'Acqua and one which he had in common with this great humanist. In fact Vicenza's choice of the once-exiled Trissino as orator to a doge, someone who was to distinguish himself for his centralizing and

imperialist policies, was well-calculated politics. Furthermore, the guiding role of the Trissino family, part of the Vicenza heterodoxical group, and in particular of Giulio Trissino,

Giangiorgio's Lutheran son-associated with Brucioli in the diffusion of heterodox literature and archpriest in the cathe- dral from 1525-made the association one to which Dall'Acqua would certainly have been attentive.69

Starting from the documented relations between Dall'Acqua, Gritti, and Zorzi, and alluding to the affinities of style between the high altar in Vicenza cathedral and the work of Jacopo Sansovino, Tafuri cautiously advanced the hypothesis of an attribution of the altar to Sansovino.70 In fact the closeness of the Proto of S. Marco to Catholic Reformation circles would

appear to be demonstrable.71 And it could have been Zorzi,

guiding spirit of the church of S. Francesco della Vigna, who was given the task of mediation between architect and patron.

One further circumstance might give us another reason to think that Aurelio and Sansovino knew each other. From 1534 Aurelio Dall'Acqua was a superintendent of the Palazzo della

Ragione in Vicenza, together with Giovanni Trento.72 On 28

September 1535, he was reconfirmed in this post with Fran- cesco Gualdo and they were given the job of "finding a way, using expert workmen, of repairing the aforesaid imminent ruin and working upon it."73 Thus a request for consultation over the restoration of the palace was given impetus. The arrival ofJacopo Sansovino was announced for 25 November of the following year. The possiblity that he was called under the

auspices of Dall'Acqua cannot be excluded. Sansovino, how-

ever, did not come to Vicenza until 1538, two years after

Dall'Acqua's appointment as superintendent ended. The circumstances we have examined up to now would

appear to have some relevance to an attribution of the

Dall'Acqua altar to Sansovino. None of them is conclusive, however. What becomes necessary at this point is to see whether or not such a hypothesis will stand up to a detailed formal

interrogation, and to do this it will be necessary to determine whether there are any equally cogent reasons for taking the

attribution away from Palladio. If, in fact, stylistic analysis remains one of the fundamental procedures in an inquiry such as this one, it becomes even more pertinent when documentary proof is neither exhaustive nor irrefutable. In such a case, it is the architecture itself that has to be closely questioned and examined.

Structures inspired by or deriving from forms of the trium-

phal arch are common enough in Sansovino's work, and it has often been pointed out how his predilection for this form reflects on the designs and works of his two masters, Andrea Sansovino and, more so, Giuliano da Sangallo. The young Jacopo Sansovino worked alongside Andrea on the two funeral monuments in the choir of the church of Sta. Maria del Popolo, during his first stay in Rome, from about 1506.74 In these funeral monuments, the structure of the triumphal arch seems to have been designed to be dressed with rich decorations; the forms flimsy, the structural elements weakly reflected in the arch itself. But it is in the design for the temporary fasade of Sta. M. del Fiore in Florence, prepared by Sansovino with Andrea del Sarto for Pope Leo X's entry into Florence, that this motif was reworked more vigorously. Wolfgang Lotz and, later, Arnaldo Bruschi have pointed out the debt that Sansovino's facade owed to Giuliano da Sangallo's designs for the facade of S. Lorenzo in Florence.75 The line of continuity between Giuliano's model and Sansovino's replicas, following his cathe- dral faSade of 1515, leads to the latter's designs for the facade of S. Lorenzo (1515-1516) and the Loggetta of the campanile of S. Marco in Venice (1538-1540).76 But before the Loggetta, Sansovino was a protagonist in a frustrated attempt to give a noble and triumphal character to the facade of the Scuola Grande della Misericordia, using freestanding columns. Sanso- vino's initial project for this facade turned out to be unusable because of previous agreements by the brothers of the Scuola and the Moro family, to exclude columns from the facade of the Scuola. Sansovino was asked to eliminate the columns in 1532, and construction began on the final design in 1535.77 Tafuri has

suggested that it was Sansovino who showed Antonio Abbondi, lo Scarpagnino, a triumphal arch model from which to com-

plete the facade of the Scuola Grande di S. Rocco in 1536. That Sansovino had a marked tendency to enter into collaboration with other artists might support the likelihood of this connec- tion. The altar of the Scuola Grande di S. Marco, of around 1533, in whose design both the Proto and the humblest stonemasons were involved, has paired freestanding col- umns.78 The date is important. In the early 1530s the three scuole grandi of Venice competed on many levels, and the

adoption or rejection of the triumphal arch motif was part of this competition. In 1534 the same motif makes its appearance in the high altar ofVicenza cathedral.

Structures deriving from the triumphal arch also character- ize the later work of Sansovino. There are pairs of freestanding


Page 12: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

columns on the Loggetta in the piazza of S. Marco (1538-1540), on the funeral monument to Doge Francesco Venier in the

church of S. Salvador (c. 1555-1561), on the Podocataro

monument at S. Sebastiano (1557), and on the monument for

Giovanni da Lezze and his family, now on the inner facade of

the Gesui (after 1560).79 On the facade of S. Giuliano, though, these take the form of paired half columns, shields with the coat

of arms of the patron filling the spaces between them, as do

those between the pilasters on the Dall'Acqua altar. In the

Doric, or first, order of the San Giuliano facade, we find another

of those elements that also characterize the Dall'Acqua altar.

This is the joining up of the moldings at the bases of the half

columns along the intervening wall. Without a doubt, Sanso-

vino knew both the Roman origins of such a solution and its

Tuscan Romanesque version-no less classicizing than the

former in the opinion of fifteenth-and sixteenth-century archi-

tects. And the attention that he paid to the forms of fifteenth-

century Venetian sculpture and architecture in the works of

Mauro Codussi and of Pietro Lombardo and his sons must have

revealed a style that he already knew well. Jacopo would more

than oncejoin up elements of the base of an architectural order

along a flat space of walling. This technique was used on the

facade of the church of S. Geminiano in Piazza S. Marco, now

demolished (1557); on the organ screen of S. Salvador (1530); in the pilasters of the Lezze monument mentioned above; and

in two other works of problematic Palladio-Sansovino attribu-

tion, the two Gritti monuments in the presbytery of the church

of S. Francesco della Vigna (after 1536) and the project for the

facade of the Scuola Grande della Misericordia (after 1535).80

The anomalous Composite capital on the Dall'Acqua altar is to

be seen again, albeit with different proportions, on the first

order of the S. Salvador organ screen in Venice, realized for

Girolamo Priuli by Sansovino's workshop in 1530.81 But, as

already noted, this capital motif had made its appearance in

Venice by at least the second decade of the century. A search for the motif of the attic-story crown within the

workshop ofJacopo Sansovino also brings some very interest-

ing results. Over the doorway of the church of Sta. Maria

Formosa a crown of this kind supports a funeral monument

celebrating the martial virtues of the Capitan da Mar Vincenzo

Cappello, who died in 1541 [Figure 9]. The statue of Cappello is

by Domenico di Pietro Grazioli da Salo, one of those sculptors who gravitated to Jacopo's workshop, but it seems likely that

the doorway is by Sansovino.82 The pulvinated frieze, in fact,

together with a variation of the Vitruvian Ionic base in the

columns that frame the doorway, suggest his hand. Other

variants of this base appear on the second order of the

Marciana Library (1536-1537), in the loggia ofVilla Garzoni at

Pontecasale (1540s), and in Palazzo Comer at S. Maurizio (end of 1530s and later). One further proof that the entire altar is

Sansovinian in conception can be seen in the notable motif of

FIGURE 9: Monument to the Capitano da Mar, Vincenzo Cappello, Sta. Maria

Formosa, Venice

the crown termination which turns up inJacopo's later work. It is there, with the addition of two volutes, on the side door of the church of S. Giuliano (1554), and it appears, with sculpted figures over one of the chimneypieces of Villa Garzoni at Pontecasale (1540s). The similarity between this chimneypiece and the one painted with Andrea del Sarto's Birth of the Virgin, in the Chiostrino dei Voti of SS. Annunziata in Florence, could be another pointer to the Florentine nature of the motif and to Sansovino.83 Finally, a splendid version with naturalistic decora- tions crowns the sacristy door of S. Marco itself [Figure 10]. This was begun in 1546 but completed only much later.84 The

Dall'Acqua altar, finally, brings us back once again to Jacopo Sansovino. The structure containing the tabernacle, placed beneath the large central arch, is remarkably similar to that

arrangement on the monument for Cardinal Francisco Quino- nes in the church of Sta. Croce in Gerusalemme, Rome (c. 1535), like the Dall'Acqua altar a funerary monument intended to function as a sacramental altar in a church of considerable

importance [Figure 11].85 In Rome, as in Vicenza, tripartite structures with flanking niches are surmounted, over the central part, by a triangular pediment whose jutting base is continuous with the cornice. Nonetheless, in Quinones's tomb,

168 JSAH/ 55:2, JUNE 1996

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there are half columns, whereas in the Dall'Acqua altar there are only two pilasters to contain the central part of the

composition [Figure 12]. Here, too, the niches seem to have

slipped downwards to accommodate two finely inlaid marble roundels which are set between the tops of the niches and the

entablature. It is almost as if the need to find a proper place for

these precious decorative elements had tempted the designer to sacrifice the visibility of the niches. Sansovino designed the

Quifiones monument in the mid-1530s, while he was working on the Loggetta, with which it shares not only its overall

articulation but also the Venetian taste for color. This is also the

period of the design for the church of S. Francesco della Vigna. Quinones, probably through the mediation of his friend Fran-

cesco Zorzi, had the design for his own memorial sent to Venice. Bruce Boucher suggests that the small round temple in

the center of this composition, along with the kneeling angel statues on either side of it, were made in Venice in Jacopo's

workshop and subsequently sent to Rome with the drawing for

the altar. The Quifiones monument would, therefore, not only be an interesting example of long-distance planning, but would

be compatible with the hypothesis of a two-part design process for the Dall'Acqua altar.

Though there is much that recalls Sansovino's language in

the Dall'Acqua altar we must still ask how it relates to the

language of the mature Palladio. In general, Palladio preferred engaged columns to free-standing columns. One significant

FIGURE I0: Jacopo Sansovino, door of the sacristy of S.Marco, Venice

exception is the Fregoso altar (1565) in the church of Sta.

Anastasia in Verona, claimed by the sculptor Danese Cattaneo, but attributed to Palladio by Howard Burs.86 It is known that

Cattaneo knew Palladio and that his formative years were spent in Sansovino's workshop in Venice. As the three versions of

Sansovino's will show us, relations between Danese Cattaneo

and Sansovino were at times stormy. In one of these wills, Cattaneo was left a sum of money and a share in the drawings in

the workshop; later he was disinherited, only to be reinstated in

a third version of the will.87 It is interesting, in the context of the

Dall'Aqua altar, to see pairs of freestanding columns in a work

possibly by Palladio, perhaps as a result of a sculptural interven-

tion by a pupil of Sansovino.

This issue becomes more complex when we take the wall

connections of the base moldings of any one architectural order

into consideration. Palladio prefers to connect these elements

using abstract strip-forms on the wall areas. There is, however, one series of examples in which sequential half columns are

joined along the wall only by a prolongation of the first torus

and the upper cavetto molding as, for example, in the Palazzo

Chiericati and the Palazzo Barbaran da Porto, Vicenza [Figure 13]. At first sight this type of solution would seem to come from

a reduction of the Roman and Florentine motif adopted by Alberti, Giuliano da Sangallo, and Sansovino. Its real origin, however, is elsewhere, as Palladio himself points out. In his

commentary on the Pantheon in the Quarto Libro, he voices his

appreciation for "the finejudgment of the architect... who, to

bind the architrave, the frieze, and the cornice of these taber-

nacles (the pilasters of the chapels not being as much out from

the wall as was necessary to contain the projection of that

cornice) he made only the cyma recta, and the remainder of the

member he converted into a fascia."88 Palladio, then, while

recognizing the origin of his abstract connecting strips in the

Pantheon, praises a well-known motif. The connection of the

cornices over the aedicules in the Pantheon also occurs in the

form of a flattened strip or band in the upper level of the Trajan market hemicycle. Such molding, adopted, almost simulta-

neously, by Giuliano da Sangallo, Raphael, and Sansovino in

Rome, can be seen in sheets U 276A and 281A for Giuliano's

facade of S. Lorenzo in Florence, in Raphael's faCade of Palazzo

Branconio dell'Aquila in Rome, and in Sansovino's for Palazzo

Gaddi at Canale di Ponte. The same motif is used again by Sansovino in the Veneto, in the Villa Garzoni at Pontecasale

and the side of Palazzo Comer in Venice.89 Palladio, in his

Quarto Libro, gives us his personal and theoretical interpreta- tion of this solution as seen in the Pantheon: The piers do not

project sufficiently to allow complete extension of the moldings

along the wall behind. This would seem to be the reasoning followed for the half columns in Palazzo Chiericati and Palazzo

Barbaran da Porto, where only one of the elements of the base

continuing along the wall, in order to keep the effect from


Page 14: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

FIGURE I I: Jacopo Sansovino, monument to cardinal Francesco Quinones, Sta. Croce in Gerusalemme, Rome

being too weighty and horizontally confined, as it would be if all

the base elements were involved. And if this is true for half

columns, it is all the more so for pilasters, which by definition

protrude very little. Though appreciating the solutions arrived

at for the aedicules of the Pantheon, Palladio declares that he is

against continuing the lower elements of pilasters; that is to say,

against precisely what happens in the Dall'Acqua altar. And,

though thirty-six years separate the design for the altar and the

publication of the Quattro Libri, the fact is that there are no cases

in which Palladio employs this motifwhen he uses pilasters.90 To complete our comparison, let us turn to the motif of the

attic crown. This, likewise, is not a motif Palladio used. That it is

used in the dovecote of Villa Trissino at Meledo is of little

significance; this work was removed from the Palladian cata-

logue some time ago.91 For the same reasons, we can eliminate

a similar crown on one of the chimneypieces of Villa Barbaro at

Maser, now attributed to Alessandro Vittoria or alternatively to

a design by Marcantonio Barbaro.92 The questions surround-

ing Burns's attribution to Palladio of the Leonardo da Porto

monument in S. Lorenzo, Vicenza, are rather more complex

[Figure 14]. This composition has two motifs in common with

the Dall'Acqua altar. These are the crowning element above

Leonardo's sarcophagus and the very similar Composite order

of the capitals. Burns dates the da Porto monument to the

mid-1540s, after the death of the patron, and the beginning af

actual construction as 1563, which is the date on the epitaph. This helps explain the anomalous form of the capitals, nothing like the work of the mature Palladio.93 The crown could

support a hypothesis that the Dall'Acqua altar was Palladio's, but it seems more likely that the young Andrea looked upon the

cathedral altar as a model, perhaps even at the request of the da


In conclusion, the mixed nature of the architectural ele-

ments on the Dall'Acqua altar and their recurrence in the

language of both Palladio and Sansovino tends not to favor

Palladio as the designer of the cathedral high altar. Yet we must

still reexamine the documentary evidence concerning the

tortuous matter of the positioning of this altar in Vicenza

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FIGURE 12: Altar of Aurelio Dall'Acqua, detail of

the tabernacle

FIGURE 13: Andrea Palladio, Palazzo Barbaran da Porto, Vicenza; facade detail

showing connecting bases of half columns. Note that Palladio extends the first torus.

cathedral. And in that matter the protagonists were Jacopo Sansovino and the Pedemuro masters.

In the early months of 1538, Pope Paul III was preparing the

inauguration of the Council in the city of Vicenza, and sent

Giovanni Rossi, Cardinal of Montepulciano, to hasten work on

roofing the tribune of the cathedral.94 On 28 March 1538, Rossi sent a letter to Cardinal Farnese saying that he was

leaving Venice immediately to go to Vicenza, but not alone. He

wrote, "This night I shall leave for Vicenza, to look to the

repairing of the cathedral tribune, which, as I understand, is

about to collapse.... I am taking master Jacopo Sansovino

with me, and all will be done for the best, and with the greatest

possible savings."95 So Sansovino went as a consultant, for a

second time, with the cardinal to Vicenza. He had been there in

January of the same year to give his advice on the loggias of the

Palazzo della Ragione. Giovanni da Montepulciano stayed in

Vicenza for only three days on this March visit but he left

Sansovino behind, to come to an agreement over the details of

the work to be done. On 2 April Rossi wrote a letter to Farnese:

"and having taken maestro Jacopo Sansovino architect with

me, it was decided... that the work should be given out on a

daily basis, to some Vicentine masters, who will do the wholejob for 730 ducats. And so I am waiting for the aforesaid maestro

Sansovino to come back to me tomorrow with the agree- ment."96 And these Vicenza masters, who were to come to an

agreement with Sansovino, were "Giovanni lapicida et m.o

Iseppo de Lantiis marangono... et m. Guglielmo marangono," that is to say, Giovanni da Porlezza, one of the two heads of the

Pedemuro workshop (a stonecutter) and two carpenters. A

notarized agreement was made with them on 5 April for the

works in the cathedral.97 Sansovino clearly had confidence in

this workshop. In a letter from Vicenza in May 1538, Girolamo Gualdo

informed Giangiorgio Trissino, then in Ferrara, that work on

the cathedral was progressing. Even at such a distance from


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FIGURE 14: Andrea Palladio, monument to Leonardo da Porto, S.Lorenzo, Vicenza

Vicenza, Aurelio Dall'Acqua's great friend wanted to know about a project that represented such an investment. From Gualdo's letter it is clear that one of the questions that had come up during discussion of the roofing was the actual

position of the high altar, which, as outlined in the agreement of 1534, had been placed at the head of the aisle, that is, the

space to be set aside for the college of cardinals during the

inauguration ceremony. Gualdo says that the altar was still

standing there, but was in danger because "those most rever- end nuncios have a mind to remove it."98 That there was

argument about the placing of the altar is confirmed in the actual contract with Giovanni da Porlezza, which declares, "hereabouts... there is no discussion to dismantle the altar of Misser Aurelio," which suggests that the question had been

brought up but that no definitive solution had been reached.99

Giving a literal reading to these two documents, one could

hypothesize that in spring 1538, with the opening of the Council imminent, one of the matters considered was the removal of the altar, as being too cumbersome and inhibiting at a time when work on the completion of the tribune had been started once again.

A document of 1 December1536 raises suspicions that, even

at that early date, the altar's position was causing trouble. The altar, so the document reads, was complete except for "the

upper part of the back, called the back of the crown."100

Separate designs for this part had been presented in 1534, but the cathedral clergy opposed their execution, saying that this had not been stipulated in the contract of 1534. Despite protests from Aurelio, they refused to modify the agreement. It

may be that their decision was based on a previous one, that is, to place the altar with its back to the perimeter wall of the apse, once that was ready. In that case no back to the upper levels of the altar would have been necessary. It was only after Aurelio's death in 1541 that the arguments about placing the altar began in earnest, even though the chance of a meeting of the Council in Vicenza was already nearly nonexistent. Thus the excuse of the Council visit does not supply a reason to keep the aisle

space free and to place the altar against the back wall of the

apse. In fact the very presence of the altar in Vicenza cathedral seems to have been a subject of discussion at the time. And it is difficult not to connect these questions about the altar with the failure of the Diet at Ratisbon and the general change in

religious climate that took place between the third and the fourth decades of the sixteenth century.

The contract of 1541 covering the altar's change of position was also made with the Pedemuro masters and stipulated the removal of two "perguli" for the reading of the Epistle and the

Gospel, elements mentioned in the agreement of 1534.101 It was also the intention to remove what was referred to as the cimiero, the attic story crown, "because it blocks the windows too much."'02 Obviously this was not carried out.

What did Sansovino contribute to the decision of spring 1538? His participation as Proto of S. Marco is explained by the

importance of the event for which Vicenza cathedral had to be

ready. Those involved in the negotiations assure us that a

meeting between Giovanni da Porlezza and Sansovino did take

place. And Sansovino, in arranging the kind of work and the methods to be used on the tribune with master Giovanni, probably also had his say about the placement of the altar. They may even have turned to Sansovino as a consultant because his

opinion was needed in both these matters, and perhaps, too, there was some personal interest on Sansovino's part in the altar, especially if he had been involved in its design phase.

In this hypothetical cooperation between Sansovino and the Pedemuro workshop, a trait ofJacopo's emerges, one that his earliest biographers bring out. According to Vasari, Jacopo made a wax bozzetto for a Deposition sketch for Pietro Perugino, now in the Victoria and Albert Museum: a model, then, for his painter friend.'03 Vasari also points out the strong relationship of reciprocity beween Sansovino and Andrea del Sarto in the

design of the temporary facade for Sta. Maria del Fiore in Florence: "conferring together about their uncertainties, Ja- copo would make models of the figures, and thus they helped

172 JSAH / 55:2, JUNE 1996


Page 17: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

one another enormously.104 Finally there is Vasari's anecdote that attributes to the young Sansovino the design of a wooden model for the king of Portugal's tomb. This model was deco- rated with wax figures and reliefs by Tribolo, yet another

precedent for the Vicenza altar, if we could substantiate Vasari's account.105 Even after his move to Venice, Jacopo preserved this propensity for collaboration. Charles Davies, in attributing three small reliefs on the Paschal Candle stand in the church of S. Spirito in Isola to Sansovino, also suggests that he worked on this object with others.106 Scholars have often discussed the collaborative relations among Lorenzo Lotto, Sebastiano Ser- lio, and Sansovino and their exchange of artistic and religious ideas.107 And the albeit unequal collaboartion between Sanso- vino and Scarpagnino on two occasions has also been com- mented upon: in the commission for the altar of the Scuola Grande di S. Marco and the completion of the facade of the Scuola Grande di S. Rocco.108 These two designs were pre- sented within three years of each other (1533 and 1536), and the model of 1534 for the Dall'Acqua altar provides an example that would confirm Sanosovino's decided interest in triumphal structures. In this same time period Sansovino's design for the columnar facade of the Scuola Grande della Misericordia was

rejected. True, even Palladio may have been involved in a collabora-

tion. He may have helped his friend Danese Cattaneo with the architectural drawing for the Fregoso monument of S. Anasta- sia in Verona. All this proves, however, is that artistic coopera- tion and the separation of architectural design and decorative

projects were not unusual. Who conceived the Dall'Acqua altar is still open to question.

But it is clear that Sansovino was completely familiar with classical forms, as well as with medieval Florentine and Renais- sance ones. In some way he reveals his Venetian roots, too, given that some of the forms on this altar had precursors in Venice. Sansovino certainly cannot be excluded. What this

inquiry sets out to do, however, goes beyond the question of attribution. It tries to reconstruct architectural trends in Vi- cenza in the years immediately preceding the arrival of Andrea Palladio on the scene. Giulio Romano is known to have been of considerable importance in the Vicenza of the time, both as author of the earliest plans for Palazzo Thiene and as the designer of Lavinia Thiene's monument in the cathedral. Michele Sanmicheli was certainly in Vicenza in the early 1540s: attribution of the doorway to Girolamo Trissino's house in Contra S. Stefano and possibly the Servite Church adds him to the architectutal scene in Vicenza at that time. Sebastiano Serlio, while at Giangiorgio Trissino's side, gave him ideas for the loggia of his villa in Cricoli, thus separating Trissino from an exclusive relation with Andrea di Pietro della Gondola.109 And in so doing, this "architecture professor," as he called himself, made his influence felt on the humanist and amateur architect.

Each of the great architects in Vicenza from the 1530s to the

early 1540s, then, leaves his mark in the form of a collection of

texts, a sort of architectural library, to be consulted and

developed. It is the influence of that extraordinary Roman

workshop of the first quarter of the century that appear in the late Gothic architecture of a province of the Serenissima. Around the not yet emancipated Palladio, then, there is a constellation of characters connected, in one way or another, with his apprenticeship. At the same time the presence of famous architects in Vicenza also prevented Palladio from

finding the patronage he was later to have. The Vicenza of these days was in search of an identity to allow it to compete, culturally and politically, with Venice, and no one of those master architects whose participation it invited was willing to settle there, none was willing or able to help change its image. Sanmicheli and Sansovino had official posts in Venice, the one as the military architect of the Republic, the other as Proto of S. Marco. Neither could be the interpreter of any collective reevaluation of Vicenza. Serlio's unstable architectural lan-

guage, too, must have raised doubts in the minds of Vicentines about his abilities: documents relating to the Palazzo della

Ragione make no comments on Serlio's design. Giulio Ro-

mano, in the end, was too busy with work for the Gonzagas, even though he does seem to have been the architect who held the most interest for Andrea Palladio's future patrons.

The assignment of work on the Palazzo della Ragione loggias seems to foreshadow the competition for the fa;ade of the Louvre, one century later. Among all the well-known

foreign architects who were called to Paris, it was the French- man Claude Perrault who carried the day as being most able to

interpret the national identity in architectural terms. If Palladio transformed Vicenza, it was the Vicentines who created their

architect, in order to establish their own political and cultural

emancipation. To return, then, to the question of attribution, the proposal

of Sansovino as the author of the Dall'Acqua monument seems to allow a plausible historical scenario for the period of work on the cathedral tribune, between 1534 and 1541. It could be that Francesco Zorzi, in close contact with Sansovino in 1534 over the design of S. Francesco della Vigna, suggested him to Aurelio as the designer of his monument. This would have come about when, through Zorzi's mediation, Sansovino was

designing Francisco Quifones's altar-monument. For Vicenza, Sansovino would have been capable of interpreting the desire for an image of triumph, as well as the religious and political interests of the patron. In the Dall'Acqua altar classical motifs are linked with the familiar forms of the Veneto and the Vicentino. In this way, the design is actually a work of media- tion, among Jacopo Sansovino, the Proto of S. Marco and

"sculptor florentinus," as he signed himself to the last, and the Pedemuro masters. And they, using the stones from Aurelio's


Page 18: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

collection, took the Roman and imperial architectural structure

and muted it, almost to the point of removing its true identity. But in Jacopo's tendency toward a linguistic hybrid-if, indeed, this intervention of 1534 intervention was his-we

perceive the beginnings of those elements that, much later, were to lead him to renounce his "Venetian epilogue."'ll

(Translation by Dorothy Hay, Venice)

Notes ' Lionello Puppi, "Gli 'altri' libri dell'architettura di Andrea Palladio," Bollet-

tino del Centro Internazionale di Studi di Architettura Andrea Palladio 22, part 1

(1980): 65-83. In the opinion of Manfredo Tafuri, Palladio lost interest in

obtaining public employment in Venice after the negative outcome of the

competitions for the proto of the Sal in 1554 and for the Scala d'Oro in the

Doge's Palace in 1555; see Tafuri, "I1 pubblico e il privato: Architettura e committenza a Venezia," Storia di Venezia: Dal Rinascimento al Barocco, ed. Gino Benzoni (Rome, 1994), 6:440 and n. 87.

2 See Amaldo Bruschi, "Bramante, Raffaello e Palladio," Bollettino del Centro Internazionale di Studi di Architettura Andrea Palladio 15 (1973): 68-87; idem, "Roma antica e l'ambiente romano nella formazione del Palladio," ibid. 20

(1978): 9-25, for a reconsideration of the great distance between Bramante and Palladio and a discussion of the relation between Palladio and Sansovino. See also Christoph L. Frommel, "Roma e la formazione architettonica di Palladio," inAndrea Palladio: Nuovi contributi, ed. Andr6 Chastel and Renato Cevese (Milan, 1990), 146-165.

3In the Quattro Libri Bramante is mentioned twice (1: 64; 4: 64) and Sansovino twice (1: 5; 4: 64), and Serlio, Sanmicheli, Peruzzi, Antonio da

Sangallo the Younger and Michelangelo are mentioned only once (4: 64). There is no mention of either Raphael or Giulio Romano (references from the Venice edition of 1570).

4 This account of Palladio's gifts has been treated with some suspicion. In the case of the Palazzo Thiene, Vicenza, scholars have noted the hands of at least two architects. For the attribution of the first project for the Palazzo Thiene to Giulio

Romano, see James S. Ackerman, Palladio (Turin 1966), 94-98; Kurt Forster and Richard J. Tuttle, "Giulio Romano e le prime opere vicentine di Palladio," Bollettino del Centro Interazionale di Studi di Architettura Andrea Palladio 15 (1973): 107-119; Howard Bums, "I progetti vicentini di Giulio Romano," in Giulio Romano (Milan, 1989): 502-509.

5 For Palladio's origins, see Giangiorgio Zorzi, "La vera origine e la giovinezza di Andrea Palladio," Archivio Veneto Tridentino, ser. 4, 2 (1922): 120-150;

Giangiorgio Zorzi, "Ancora della vera origine e della giovinezza di Andrea Palladio secondo nuovi documenti," Arte Veneta 3 (1949): 140-142; Antonio Maria Dalla Pozza, Palladio (Vicenza, 1943); Lionello Puppi, "La vera nascita di Palladio e la 'vita' scritta da Paolo Gualdo," in Vicenza illustrata, ed. Neri Pozza

(Vicenza, 1976): 222-225, and Giovanni Zaupa, L'origine del Palladio: Andrea di Pietro della Gondola da Padova a Vicenza e il Rinascimento veneto (Padua, 1990).

6 Paolo Gualdo, "Vita di Andrea Palladio" (Venice, Biblioteca Nazionale

Marciana, Codice Italiano X, 73, cc. 157), ed. Giangiorgio Zorzi, "Nacque il Palladio a Vicenza l'anno del Signore 1508 alli 30 del mese di novembre," Saggi e memorie di Storia dell'Arte, 2 (1959): 93-94; Ottavio Bertotti Scamozzi, Lefabbriche e i disegni diAndrea Palladio, 2 vols. (Vicenza, 1776-1783). Giacomo Marzari and

Imperiali also wanted Palladio to be a Vicentine. 7 For a reconstruction of Vicentine building types in the years of Palladio's

activity, see Donata Battilotti, Vicenza al tempo di Andrea Palladio attraverso i libri dell'estimo del 1563-64 (Vicenza, 1980).

8 See, among others, Erik Forrsman, Palladios Lehrgebaude: Studien uber den

Zusammenhang von Architekturtheorie bei Andrea Palladio (Stockholm, 1965); Franco Barbieri, "Palladio Lehrgebaude di E. Forrsmann," Bollettino del Centro Internazionale di Studi di Architettura Andrea Palladio 6, part 2 (1964): 323-324; Franco Barbieri, "II primo Palladio," ibid. 9 (1967): 24-36, now in Franco

Barbieri, Architetture palladiane (Vicenza, 1992), 47-55; Giangiorgio Zorzi, Le chiese e i ponti di Andrea Palladio (Venice, 1966), 11; Lionello Puppi, Andrea Palladio, 2 vols. (Milan, 1973), 2: 237; Renato Cevese, "Andrea Palladio architetto nella bottega di Pedemuro," Bollettino del Centro Internazionale di Studi

diArchitetturaAndrea Palladio 22, part 1 (1980): 159-66. On the identification of the Girolamo Trissino house in Contra S. Stefano, see Giovanni Zaupa, Andrea Palladio e la sua committenza. Denaro e architettura nella Vicenza del Cinquecento (Rome and Reggio Calabria, 1990), 49, where the Pedemuro presence in the

workshop is documented. 9 On Sanmicheli in Vicenza, see Giangiorgio Zorzi, Contributo alla stora

dell'arte vicentina neisecoliXVe XVI. Ilpreclassicismo e i prepalladiani, 2 vols. (Venice, 1937), 2, II, 143-144, doc. 18; Lionello Puppi, "Sanmicheli a Vicenza," Vita Veronese (1958): 449-453; idem, Michele Sanmicheli architetto di Verona (Padua, 1971), 83-85. For the Palladian copy after Sanmicheli, see Wolfgang Lotz, "Osservazioni intomo ai disegni di Palladio," Bollettino del Centro Internazionale di Studi di Architettura Andrea Palladio 4 (1962): 61-68.

10 Biblioteca Civica Bertoliana of Vicenza (hereafter BCB), Archivio Torre, Provisioni, VI, p. 316, 15 November 1541, quoted in Zorzi, Contributo, 143, doc. 17. Howard Bums has already proposed an attribution of the doorway of the Palazzo Trissino to Sanmicheli in "Le antichita di Verona e l'architettura del Rinascimento," in Palladio e Verona, ed. Paola Marini (Verona, 1980): 112 and n.29.

11 Zorzi, Contributo, 70-72; Zorzi, Le chiese e i ponti, 12-13; Franco Barbieri, "Le opere d'arte," in II Duomo di Vienza (Vicenza, 1956): 138-142; Barbieri, "II

primo Palladio," 26-27; Puppi, Palladio, 2: 237-238; Cevese, "Palladio archi- tetto," 160.

12 See Antonio Magrini, Notizie storico descrittive della chiesa Cattedrale di Vicenza

(Vicenza, 1848); Berardo Morsolin, "Nuovi particolari sul concilio di Vicenza," Nuovo Archivio Veneto, 4, part I (1892): 12-14; Zorzi, Contributo, 138-41 (doc. 35), 159-161 (doc. 140); Giangiorgio Zorzi, "L'abside della cattedrale di Vicenza e il contributo di Andrea Palladio al suo compimento," in Studi in onore di Federico Mistrorigo (Vicenza, 1958): 271-310, and in particular documents nos.

9,12,20. 13 Vicenza State Archives (hereafter ASVc), 17 March 1534, quoted in Zorzi,

Contributo, 153-156 (doc. 35) with an erroneous date. A contemporary copy of this contract is in BCB, Archivio Torre, Comune, vol. 51, n. 50. Concession of the site intended by the cathedral chapter for the altar is in ASVc, Notarile, Bortolo

Piacentini, b. 6134, 18 March 1534, with copy in BCB, Archivio Torre, Comune, vol. 51, n. 51: the latter quoted in Giovanni Mantese, Memorie storiche della chiesa

vicentina, 3 vols. (Vicenza, 1964), 3: part 2,934-5 with erroneous reference. 14 Manfredo Tafuri reexamined the relationship between public and private

in sixteenth century commissions. See his "Architettura e committenza a Venezia" (see n. 1).

13 "[S]ecundo la forma del modelo over desegno in carta de cavreto per essi dato al prefato Domino Aurelio." ASVc, Notarile Vicenza, Bortolo Piacentini, b.

6134, 17 March 1534. See also the concession contract with the cathedral

chapter, 18 March 1534: "iuxta modellum sive designum in capreto designatum et ostensum" (after the displayed model or parchment drawing).

16 "[N]on essendosi potute metter nel desegno le prede de precio che vanno incassade sono convenuti che circa tale incassatare se debia usar ogni diligentia e far consulti che siano ben composte et incassade, et che prima si facciano tavoloni over cartoni... sopra li quali... se habiano a presentar le prede et far le composizione de esse prede secondo el bon consulto et parere de dicti maestri." Ibid.

17 "[C]um le cole over gesso come se usa in Venezia in simil opere che al meter

in li loro fori over casse le prede fine a queli lochi destinate se reserva a quando apparera al prefato D. Aurelio per fugir el periculo de esser robate over rote da tristi" (We shall wait to put the stones in their designated places until the aformentioned Lord Aurelio wants, not to run the risk of having them stolen or broken by ignorant people). Ibid.

18 The incomplete status of this design on 17 March 1534 also emerges in another phrase in the contract: "Perch6 non si ha potuto poner el tuto minutamente nel dessegno prometeno dicti maestri li gradi de l'altar del corpo de Cristo" (For the reason that everything has not been put in minute detail into the design, the aforesaid masters promise the steps of the altar of the body of

Christ"). Ibid. 19 "Desideransque ad tantum et tale opus perficiendum prothos et lapicides

peritos habere qui valeant et sciant componere et ordinatim distribuere

preciosos lapides apponendos in ipso altare et habita notitia quae in hac nostra civitate magister ioannis et magister hieronimus lapicide habitatores in contracta

pedemuri ceteris prevaleat...." BCB, Archivio Torre, Comune, vol. 51, 17 March 1534; quoted in Mantese, Memonie, 935, with erroneous reference. The

passage quoted is not in the copy at the ASVc.

174 JSAH / 55:2, JUNE 1996

Page 19: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

20 On the Arsenal arch, see Ennio Concina, L'Arsenale della Repubblica di Venezia (Milan, 1984), 51-73.

21 Attribution of the Garzadori altar oscillates between the names of Tom- maso and Bernardino da Milano and that of Rocco da Vicenza. See Zorzi, "L'abside," 279-80; Franco Barbieri, Renato Cevese, and Licisco Magagnato, Guida di Vicenza (Vicenza, 1953), 146-147; Mantese, Memorie storiche, 3: 961, with a document which would have the altar designed by his patron "in Hierosolimitana peregrinatione dum in beatis Jordani fluvij ripis consisteret"

(during his pilgrimage toJerusalem, sitting on the riverJordan's banks). 22 Cevese, "Palladio architetto," 161. 23 Siena, Biblioteca Comunale, S. IV. 8, fol. 15v. (hereafter Siena, BC); Rome,

Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (hereafter BAV), Barb. Lat. 4424, fol. 70v. See Stefano Borsi, Giuliano da Sangallo. I disegni di architettura e dell'Antico (Rome, 1985), 245, 271.

24 Gabriele Morolli's recent reading of the architectural relationship between

Baptistery and Pantheon is flimsy. The article itself has no firm basis in either philology or written sources, and its proposal for various phases in the building is fanciful. See Morolli, "L'architettura del Battistero e 'lordine buono antico'," in II Battistero di S. Giovanni a Firenze, ed. Antonio Paolucci (Modena, 1994), 102-105.

25 The connecting of pilaster bases along the wall-especially in Bramante's work-has been analyzed by Christiane Denker Nesselrath, Die Sdulenordnungen bei Bramante (Worms, 1990), 18-19. For a recapitulation of sixteenth-century examples, see also Stefano Della Torre and Richard Schofield, Pellegrino Tibaldi architetto e il S. Fedele di Milano. Invenzione e costruzione di una chiesa esemplare (Como, 1994), 288.

26Joining of base elements along wall areas can be seen in the first order of the Ferrara campanile. The debate about its attribution to Leon Battista Alberti goes on. No clarification comes from the recent contribution by Joseph Rykwert, "Leon Battista Alberti a Ferrara," in Leon Battista Alberti, exhib. cat., ed. Joseph Rykwert and Anne Engel (Milan, 1994): 158-161. The absence of footnotes in his text is particularly vexing.

27 At San Lorenzo it appears in thejoining up of the astragals of the capitals. It is a recurrent feature of triumphal arches and also present in the Pantheon. See Uffizi U 177A, 278A, 281A. On the subject of joining column capitals by prolonging the astragals along the wall, see Manfredo Tafuri, "Raffaello, Jacopo Sansovino e la facciata di S. Lorenzo a Firenze," Annali di Architettura 2 (1990): 26-27 and n. 11.

28 See the upper part of the facade of S. Zaccaria church in Venice, with pairs of freestanding columns; the first order of the facade of S. Giovanni Crisostomo (only the upper part can be seen, the lower being buried); the facade of Palazzo Loredan-Vendramin Calergi; the stairway of the Scuola Grande of S. Giovanni Evangelista; the Lombardesque entrance hall in the same building; the choir of S. Maria dei Frari; and other examples.

29 Bertrand Jestaz, "L'apparition de l'ordre composite a Venise," in L'emplois des Ordres dans la Renaissance, ed.Jean Guillaume (Paris, 1992): 163.

30 BAV, Barb. Lat. 4424, fol. 30; Siena, BC, cod. S. IV. 8, fol. 10. 31 Siena, BC, cod. S. IV. I, fol. 142v. See Puppi, Palladio, 238 and ill. n. 274. 32 See Alessandro Cecchi, "Percorso di Baccio d'Agnolo legnaiuolo e archi-

tetto fiorentino dagli esordi a palazzo Borgherini 1,"Antichita Viva 29 (1990): 41, n.1.

33 BAV, Barb. Lat. 4424, fol. 6v. 34 For the Sansovino project, see Giuseppe Richa, Notizie istoriche delle chiese

fiorentine, 10 vols. (Florence, 1757), 5: 1; Raffaello da Montelupo, copy of a preliminary draft by Michelangelo for the S. Lorenzo facade in Florence: Lille, Musee des Beaux-Arts, 722; anonymous sixteenth-century copy of Michelange- lo's first plan for the S. Lorenzo facade in Florence, Casa Buonarroti, A 45 (c. 497r).

35 Konrad Oberhuber, "La sala di Psiche," in Giulio Romano (see n. 4), 343-346.

36 See Manfredo Tafuri, "El palacio de Carlos V en Granada: Arquitectura 'a lo romano' e iconografia imperial," Quademos de laAlhambra 24 (1988): 77-108; Howard Burs and Manfredo Tafuri, "La fortuna di Giulio Romano. Da Serlio all'Escorial," in Giulio Romano, 575-581; Manfredo Tafuri, Ricerca del Rinasci- mento. Principi, citta, architetti (Turin, 1992), 282-293.

37JacquesJacquot, "Panorama des Fetes et Ceremonies du Regne," in Fetes et Ceremonies au temps de Charles V, ed. Jacques Jacquot (Paris, 1950), pls. XL, 1 and 2.

38 See Elena Parma Armani, Penn del Vaga. L'anello mancante (Genoa, 1986),

83 and pl. 82; 84, pl. 83, with two semireclining figures in place of the two lateral connections.

39 See Pierluigi Leone de Castris, Polidoro da Caravaggio tra Napoli e Messina

(Naples, 1989), 132-4 and n. XI a.2 (Berlin, Staatliche Museen, Kupferstichkabi- nett, inv. K.d.Z.26451.79.D.34) and n. XI a.3 (Kupferstichkabinett, inv. K.d.Z. 26450, 79.D.34r.) See also illustration 59, p.134, from Berlin, a study by Polidoro of variants of the same arch. For the Philip II arch, see Jacquot, "Panorama," pl. XXIII.

40 See Sebastiano Serlio, Isette libri dell'architettura (Venice, 1584), 4: 158, with a Doric doorway with trigliphated bracket and a crown with lateral volutes. This same motif is taken up again in his Libro Extraordinario: see ibid., 7: 14. A later variant of the raised crown termination surmounts the central window of the triad on the flank of the Torre del Tormento at Vicenza (noted by Cevese in "Palladio architetto").

41 John McAndrew, Venetian Architecture of the Early Renaissance (Cambridge, Mass., 1980), 504 and pl. 31.18.

42 In the Emiliani Chapel, this is seen in the internal doorway decoration, the Assumption altar, and the crown of the wall between this chapel and the Codussi church. For the attribution of the S. Salvador high altar to Guglielmo de' Grigi, see Venice State Archives (hereafter ASV), Convento di S.Salvador, tomo 50, b. 25, p. 91. B. Cecchetti, "Documenti per la storia della fabbrica della chiesa di S. Zaccaria; della cappella Emiliana nell'isola di S. Michele e della chiesa di S. Salvador," Archivio Veneto 31 (1886): 496, connects this document to the High Altar of S. Salvador. Pietro Paoletti, L'architettura e la scultura del Rinascimento a Venezia, 2 vols. (Venice, 1893), I, part 2: 243, connects it to the S. Girolamo altar in the same church. For attribution of the side door of S. Francesco della Vigna to Guglielmo de' Grigi, see Luigi Angelini, Bartolomeo Bon, Gugliemo d'Alzana architetti bergamaschi a Venezia (Bergamo, 1961), 138-9; Manfredo Tafuri and Antonio Foscari, L'armonia e i conflitti. La chiesa di S. Francesco della Vigna nella Venezia del '500 (Turin, 1983), 88-89.

43 The crown termination of the Vicenza cathedral facade was rebuilt in 1950, using the original late fifteenth-century forms, as may be seen by comparing the view of the cathedral as seen in the background of Bellini's Pieta in the Venice Accademia, and in Madonna delle Stelle, painted by Fogolino around 1520.

44 Giovanni Mantese, "La biblioteca di Daniele Dall'Acqua nel secolo XV," in Studi in onore di Antonio Bardelle (Vicenza, 1964): 109-117.

45 For the biography of Aurelio Dall'Acqua, see Fedele Lampertico, "Aurelio Dall'Acqua e l'istituzione dotale detta mensa aureliana," Archivio Veneto 20 (1880): 255-273; Giovanni Mantese, "Aurelio Dall'Acqua cavaliere vicentino e la sua 'Catena Evangelica,"' in Studi in onore di Antonio Bardelle, 85-107, reprinted in Giovanni Mantese, Scritti scelti di Storia Vicentina (Vicenza, 1982), 85-107; Giovanni Zaupa, L'origine del Palladio (see n. 5), 65-69.

46ASV, Notarile, Girolamo de' Bossis; quoted in Lampertico, "Aurelio Dall'Acqua," 266.

47 See Lampertico, "Aurelio Dall'Acqua," 269-270. In 1533 Dall'Acqua went on a mission to Venice for fifteen days: having spent only thirteen days in his city's service, he gave back the payment for the remaining two days. In 1534, after his mission with Trissino, we find him in Venice yet again, with Pietro Valmarana, from 5 October to 3 November and, once again, from 20 November to 22 December. He was in Venice in 1535 from 15 January to 18 March, from 19 April to 21 May, and from 20June to 16July.

48 Pietro Bembo, II terzo volume delle lettere (Venice, 1562), 210. 49 BCB, Manoscritti, 474. Mantese, "Aurelio Dall'Acqua," 91, points to the

Diatesseron by Taziano as a possible source for the Catena Evangelica. 50 BCB, Manoscritti., 474, c.4r., "Vidi optime doctor, et eques opus mihi per

ill.mum Ducale Dominio venetiarum traditum examinandum" (Most honorable doctor and knight, I have seen the work that the most illustrious ducal government gave me to examine).

51 Ibid., c. 4v., "Circa quam (unionem) conducendam, etsi alii diversis temporibus elaboraverint, non tamen eadem concinnitate perduxerunt qua tu, spiritu illo sancto et harmonico te afflante, perduxisti." (As a result of Aurelio's achievement-"apparentia removet evangelistarum contraria"- after all "into- net concentus perpetuus in auribus omnium legentium, et audientum."

52 See Tafuri and Foscari, L'armonia (see n. 42), 23, and chapters 1 and 3 with relevant biographical notes dealing with Francesco Zorzi as a figure and with his connections with the Venetian and Italian humanistic milieu.

53 BCB, Manoscritti, 474, c. 2r.; cc. 2v.-3r. 54Among the many interests of Francesco Zorzi were his political and

diplomatic activity in the mainland cities during the War ofCambrai. As a part of


Page 20: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

this activity he came to Vicenza in 1510. See Marin Sanudo, Diarii, Bologna 1969-1970,58 vols, 11: 224. Relations between Dall'Acqua and the Zorzi can be dated back to at least 1513.

55 Lampertico, "Aurelio Dall'Acqua," 39. 56 Puppi, Palladio (see n. 8), 237-238; Tafuri and Foscari, L'armonia, 111, n.

126. 57 "Annotationes erasmi diversarum rerum... erasmi opuscula/alia erasmi

opuscula/questiones super Evangeliis" (Notes by Erasmus on diverse things/ pamphlet by Erasmus/further pamphlet by Erasmus/questions about the

Gospels) ASVc, Notarile Vicenza, Benedetto Castellini, b.6230, 15 March 1539. 58 "Augustinus super psalmis/Augustinus de civitate dei/liber primus retrac-

tionis divi Augustini/meditationes sancti Augustini coperte coreo rubeo/alia

opuscola sancti Augustini" (Augustine on the psalms/Augustine the city of God/first book of retraction of Saint Augustine/meditation of Saint Augustine covered with red leather/another pamphlet by Saint Augustine).

59 Those who denounced Brucioli as a Lutheran living in Venice included Don Pietro Manelfi, in his well-known Constituti of 1551, but Brucioli's religious position, like that of most of the Venetian "heretics," emerges as rather an

ambiguous one: see Carlo Ginzburg, I Costituti di don Pietro Manelfi (Florence,

1970); Silvana Seidel Menchi, "La circolazione clandestina di Erasmo in Italia," Annali della Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa 9 (1979): 573-601; idem, Erasmo in

Italia (Milan, 1987), passim; Aldo Stella, "Le minoranze religiose," in Storia di Vicenza, 3 vols. (Vicenza, 1989) 3/1: 199-219; Adriano Prosperi, "Ortodossia, diversita, dissenso. Venezia e il governo della religione intorno alla meta del

Cinquecento," inAndrea Palladio. Nuovi contributi, ed. Andre Chastel and Renato

Cevese (Milan, 1990): 27-31. 60 Zaupa, L'origine del Palladio, 68. The title "annotationes" also occurs in the

inventory to identify Erasmus' commentary on the New Testament. On the

figure of Brucioli, see also Giorgio Spini, Tra Rinascimento e Riforma. Antonio

Brucioli (Florence, 1940); Theodore W. Elwert, "Un umanista dimenticato: Antonio Brucioli, veneziano di elezione," in Rinascimento Europeo e Rinascimento

Veneziano, ed. Vittore Branca (Florence, 1967), 75-96; Giovanni Romano, "La Bibbia di Lotto," Paragone 317-319 (1976): 82-91; Seidel Menchi, "La circolazione," 573-601.

61 Seidel Menchi, "La circolazione"; idem, Erasmo, 89-90. 62 BCB, Manoscritti, 474, c.4v., "Quod unicum enuntiatun (Evangelii) fuit

duriuscule in lege preceptoria atque comminatoria citra salutem, et iustificati-

one, dicente Paulo ad Romanos III nemo iustificatur per legem." Explicit references to the Pauline theology ofjustification by faith and premises that are not compatible with Lutheran ones were also expressed in the Veneto by Gasparo Contarini accusing the "zelanti," religious conservatives, who lacked scientia, "who, because Luther said things about God's Grace and about free will, are against anyone who preaches and teaches the greatness of Grace and of human infirmity, and thinking that in so doing they are contradicting Luther ... actually deviate from Catholic truth." See Aldo Stella, "La lettera del

cardinal Contarini sulla predestinazione," Rivista di Storia della Chiesa in Italia 15

(1961): 412. 63 BCB, Manoscritti, 474, 5r., "Hinc domine mi Aureli ad omnes evangelicos

viros pro quoque consolatione adeo laborasti me convertam, dicamque legite evangelici viri evangelium totum in harmonicum concentium deductum."

64 See Cesare Vasoli, Profezia e ragione. Studi della cultura del Cinquecento e del

Seicento (Naples, 1974), 124; Aldo Stella, Anabattismo e trinitarismo in Italia nel XVI

secolo. Nuove ricerche storiche (Padua, 1969), 114; Tafuri and Foscari, L'armonia

(see n. 42), 10, 15 and n. 6, 22; Manfredo Tafuri, Venezia e il Rinascimento:

Religione, scienza, architettura (Turin, 1985), 92; Prosperi, "Ortodossia," 29 and n.

6; Seidel Menchi, Erasmo, 145. 65 BCB, Manoscritti, 474, cc.5r.-6v. 66 Seidel Menchi, Erasmo, 279-280. 67 In Venice and the Veneto there was a well-established network of humanists

interested in spiritual matters and religious reform. It was destined to fall apart because of that grave inefficacy for which, in his turn, Cantimori reproved the "Italian heretics" who did not prevent the failure of the Catholic Reformation. Delio Cantimori, "Atteggiamenti della vita culturale italiana nel secolo XVI di fronte alla Riforma," Rivista Storica Italiana 53 (1936): 41-49, reprinted in Delio

Cantimori, Umanesimo e Religione nel Rinascimento (Turin, 1975), 3 ff.

68BCB, Manoscritti, 474, cc.lr.-lv.; 3r.-4r. Both Mantese, in "Aurelio

Dall'Acqua," 95, and Zaupa in L'origine del Palladio, 175, n. 319, state that the Catena Evangelica was not published because of Aurelio's death, since he gave

exact directions about its publication in his will. However, a closer examination of the will itself, drawn up on 1 August 1531, shows that Aurelio had eight years to change his mind; he died in 1539.

69Achille Olivieri, "'Microcosmi familiari' e trasmissione 'ereticale': i Tris- sino," in Convegno di Studi su Giangiorgio Trissino, ed. Neri Pozza (Vicenza, 1980): 175-179.

70 Tafuri and Foscari, L'armonia, 44-45. 71 Tafuri, Venezia, 90-101. 72 Zorzi, Contributo (see n. 9), 149-50, doc. 29: the Provveditori paid the

stonemason Alvise Sbari for supplying the stone to build shops under the

palazzo vaults, "prope carceres" (near the prisons). 73 "[I]nveniendo modum, medio peritorum, reparationis praedictae imminen-

tis ruinae ac tractandi cum ipsi proposita." Ibid. 74 See Bruce Boucher, The Sculpture ofJacopo Sansovino, 2 vols. (New Haven

and London, 1991), I: 5. 75 See Wolfgang Lotz, "L'eredita romana diJacopo Sansovino architetto venezi-

ano," Bolettino del Centro Internazionale di Studi di Architettura Andrea Palladio 3

(1961): 82-88; Wolfgang Lotz, "The Roman Legacy in Sansovino's Venetian

Buildings,"JSAH 22 (1963): 3-12, reprinted in Wolfgang Lotz, Studies in Italian Renaissance Architecture (Cambridge, Mass., 1977): 140-51; Arnaldo Bruschi, "Una tendenza artistica medicea," in Firenze e la Toscana dei Medici nell'Europa del '500, 3 vols. (Florence, 1983), 3: 1005-1028.

76 On this subject see Boucher, Sculpture 1: 22-23; Tafuri, Ricerca, 150-155. 77 Deborah Howard,Jacopo Sansovino. Architecture and Patronage in Renaissance

Venice (New Haven and London, 1975), 102-103; Tafuri, Ricerca, 145. 78 See Pietro Paoletti, Rinascimento in Venezia (see n. 42), 2: 107. 79 Scholars disagree on attributing the Da Lezze monument to Sansovino. In

favor are Douglas Lewis, book review of Deborah Howard, Sansovino (which does not discuss the matter), The Burlington Magazine 121 (1979): 38-41; Tafuri and Foscari, L'armonia (see n. 42), 86; and Marisa Dario, "I1 monumento funebre ai

procuratori Priamo, Giovanni e Andrea da Lezze. Nuove considerazioni per un'attribuzione a Jacopo Sansovino," Arte Veneta 46 (1994): 62-69. Boucher, Sculpture, 2: 370, has excluded the monument from the Sansovino catalogue.

80 The Gritti monument in S. Francesco della Vigna has been attributed to Scamozzi by Deborah Howard, Sansovino, 173, n. 36; to Palladio by Franco

Barbieri, "Le chiese e i ponti di Andrea Palladio di Giangiorgio Zorzi," Bollettino del Centro Internazionale di Studi diArchitetturaAndrea Palladio 8, part 2 (1966): 35, n. 28; to Sansovino by Puppi, Palladio (see n. 8), 273-274. Tafuri, L'armonia, 87, favors neither Palladio nor Sansovino. The plan for the Scuola della Misericordia facade is now in the Museo Civico in Vicenza, fol.D. 18. A copy of the upper part of the drawing is kept at the Royal Institute of British Architects, London, VIII/12. Concerning attribution of this plan to Sansovino, see Lotz, "The Roman Legacy," 7; Manfredo Tafuri,Jacopo Sansovino e l'architettura veneziana del '500 (Padua, 1969), 13 and nn. 27 and 29; Manfredo Tafuri, "Facciata della Scuola Grande della Misericordia," in Le Venezia possibili. Da Palladio a Le

Corbusier, ed. Lionello Puppi and Giandomenico Romanelli (Milan, 1985), 28-29; Tafuri, Venezia, 146 and n. 51, with the earlier bibliography. For the attribution of the plan for the facade of the Scuola Grande della Misericorda to Palladio see Howard Burs, "I disegni di Palladio," Bollettino del Centro Internazio- nale di Studi di Architettura Andrea Palladio 15 (1973): 180; idem, "I disegni," in Palladio (Milan, 1973), 152-153; Howard Burs, "Project for the facade of the Scuola Grande della Misericordia, Venice," in Andrea Palladio: The Portico and the

Farmyard, ed. Howard Burs, Bruce Boucher, and Linda Fairbairn (London, 1975): 154-155; Puppi, Palladio, 395; Douglas Lewis, The Drawings of Andrea Palladio (Washington, D.C., 1981), 182; Lionello Puppi, Palladio. Corpus dei

disegni al Museo Civico di Vicenza (Milan, 1989), 112, n. 49. 81 For the statues on this screen, documents furnish the names of Danese

Cataneo and Jacopo Fantoni: see Caroline Kolb Lewis, The Villa Giustinian at Roncade (New York and London, 1977), 90; Boucher, Sculpture, 1: 144 and n. 16. Charles Davies in a review of Boucher's work .in Kunstchronik 46 (1993): 358, attributes the S. Salvador organ screen to Gugliemo de' Grigi. See also Zorzi, Le chiese (see n. 8), 13, who points out the affinity between the capitals on the

Dall'Acqua altar and those on the side doorway of S. Sebastiano in Venice. 82 See Boucher, Sculpture, 1: 114. 83 See Charles Davies, "Jacopo Sansovino and the Engraved Memorials of the

Cappella Badoer Giustinian in S. Francesco della Vigna in Venice," Miinchner

Jahrbuch der bildenden Kunst 45 (1994): 161, n. 10; 162, n. 38. 84 Bruce Boucher, "Jacopo Sansovino and the Choir of St. Mark's: The

176 JSAH / 55:2, JUNE 1996

Page 21: Morresi Vicenza Before Palladio

Evangelists, the Sacristy Door and the Altar of the Sacrament," The Burlington Magazine 121 (1979): 155-168, makes a connection between the sacristy door and the inversely curved doorway designed by Pirro Ligorio (Windsor, n. 10797), and also found in U 106A, attributed to Sallustio Peruzzi. See Boucher, Sculpture, 2:311-312.

85 Attribution to Sansovino is based on the famous letter of Pietro Aretino of November 1537, in Lettere, 5 vols. (Paris, 1609), I: 190-191; on the Quifiones altar see Gustavo Giovannoni, "Un'opera sconosciuta di Jacopo Sansovino in Roma," Bollettino d'Arte 3-4 (1917): 64-81, which, besides the general concep- tion of the monument, ascribes only the two prophets' statues to Sansovino, and holds that the design was executed in Rome; Vincenzo Golzio and Giuseppe Zander, Le chiese in Roma dal XI al XVI secolo (Bologna, 1963), 262; Tafuri and Foscari, L'arnonia, 54, 61; Boucher, Sculpture, 1:52-53; 2:325-326.

86 Giorgio Vasari, Le Vite de' piu eccellenti architetti, pittori e scultori italiani, ed. Gaetano Milanesi, 9 vols. (Florence, 1906), 7: 524-525. See Howard Burs, "Danese Cattaneo e Andrea Palladio, Altare Fregoso. Verona, chiesa di S. Anastasia," Palladio e Verona, ed. Paola Marini (Verona, 1980), 165-166.

87 See the two remaining copies of Sansovino's will in Boucher, Sculpture, 1:233-234.

88 The Four Books of Andrea Palladio's Architecture (London, 1738), 4:101. The

original text reads: "I1 bel giudicio, c'hebbe l'Architetto, il quale nel far recingere l'Architrave, il fregio & la cornice di questi Tabernacoli, non essendo i pilastri delle cappelle tanto fuori del muro, che potessero capire tutta la proiettura di quella cornice, fece solamente la Gola dritta, & il rimanente dei membri converti' in una fascia." (Andrea Palladio, I quattro libri dell'architettura [Venice, 1570] 4: 74.

89 For the diffusion of this motif see Tafuri, Ricerca (see n. 36), 151-152. 90 Half columnsjoined by continuation of their moldings along the interven-

ingwall may be seen in the frontispiece of Daniele Barbaro's Vitruvio and in some Palladian works of the 1560s. See the facade of S. Francesco della Vigna, that of S. Giorgio Maggiore, and the drawing for a funerary monument today in

Budapest (Art Museum, n. 1989), whose figurative part is by Paolo Veronese. 91 Puppi, Palladio (see n. 8), 386; Cevese, "Palladio architetto" (see n. 8), 164,

n.9. 92

Puppi, Palladio, 317, figs. 414 and 415. 93 Howard Burs, "Le opere minori di Palladio," Bollettino del Centro Interna-

zionale di Studi di Architettura Andrea Palladio 21 (1979): 19 and n. 31. Attribution of the da Porto monument to Palladio, despite the absence of documentary evidence, had already been made by Girolamo Muttoni, Architettura di Andrea Palladio Vicentino (Venezia, 1760), and by Ottavio Bertotti-Scamozzi, Lefabbriche (see n. 6) I, 113-115 and plates XLI-XLII, where the form of the capitals is discussed. In contrast to the Dall'Acqua altar, however, the volutes here are

parallel to the wall behind them, and the da Porto capitals have no abacus. 94 See Morsolin, "Nuovi particolari" (see n. 12), 12; Mantese, Memorie (see n.

13),89 95 "Questa nocte mi parto per Vicenza per andara ad remediare a la Tribuna

de la chatedrale, che, secondo intendo, minaccia ruina ... Menero meco el m.o

Jacopo Sansovino et si dara tutto a bon recapito e con piu sparagno che sara possibile," quoted by Morsolin ("Nuovi particolari," [see n. 12] 13, n. 2), who found the letter to the Archivio di Stato, Parma. Zorzi, having searched for it in vain, reports it as having disappeared ("L'abside" [see n. 12], 281, n. 45).

96"Et avendo menato con me el m.o Jacopo Sansuvino architetto, fu appuntato ... che si desse a cottimo a certi maestri vicentini, che faranno el tutto per 730 ducati. Demodo ch'io expecto che domane me manderanno el predicto maestro con la conclusione": Zorzi, "L'abside," 14, n. 1. According to Zorzi this document is missing from the Archivio di Stato, Parma.

97 ASVc, Notarile Vicenza, Bortolo Piacentini, b.6138, 5 April 1538; quoted in Magrini, Notizie (see n. 12) without reference numbers.

98 "[Q]uesti Reverendissimi nunzi sono in animo al tutto di levarlo"; quoted in

Magrini, Notizie (see n. 12), 67. 99 "In questo merchado non... se parla de desfare l'altare de M. Aurelio."

ASVc, Notarile Vicenza, Bortolo Piacentini, b.6138, 5 April 1538. 100 "[P]arte superiore a tergo, dictam el roverso della cima." ASVc, Notarile

Vicenza, Giovanni Matteo degli Orsi, b.6718. There is a copy of this document in BCB, Archivio Torre, Comune, vol. 51, n. 49: quoted in Mantese, Memorie, 936, with erroneous reference. See also ASVc, Notarile Vicenza, Bortolo Piacentini, b.6134, 17 March 1534, "el roverso della cima facto sopra un'altra carta pegorina minore" (the back of the crown, done on another, smaller parchment).

'10 ASVc, Notarile Vicenza, Bortolo Piacentini, b.6134, 17 March 1534: "dui perguli uno per leger la epistola l'altro lo evangelio secundo la forma de dicto dessegno" (two perguli, one for reading the Epistle, the other for the Gospel, according to the form of the said drawing).

102 "[P]erche ocuperia troppo le finestre." BCB, Archivio Torre, Provisioni, VI, cc. 221 ff.; quoted in Zorzi, Contributo (see n. 9), doc. 15-20, with the payments made to the Pedemuro masters.

103 Vasari, Vite, 7: 490: "gli fu da Bramante trovata una camera pure in Borgo vecchio... dove ancora alloggiava Pietro Perugino... perche, avendo visto Pietro la bella maniera di Sansovino, gli fece fare per se' molti modelli di cera; e fra gli altri un Cristo deposto di croce."

104"[P]erch6 conferendo insieme i dubbi dell'arte, e facendo Jacopo per Andrea modelli di figure, s' aiutavano l'un l'altro sommamente." Vasari, Vite, 7: 488.

'05 Vasari, Vite, 6: 58. Ulrich Middeldorf, "Sull'attivita della bottega diJacopo Sansovino," Rivista d'Arte 18 (1936), 260, recognizes U 142A as Sansovino's plan for the king of Portugal's tomb. This hypothesis has found support with John Shearman; see hisAndrea del Sarto (Oxford, 1965), 25, n. 4.

106 See Charles Davies, "Jacopo Sansovino and the Italian Plaquette," in The Italian Plaquette, ed. Alison Luchs, Studies in the History ofArt 22 (1989): 278-279. Sansovino's attitude toward cooperation with other artists is discussed by Charles Davies in "La grande 'Venezia' a Londra. Ancora note in margine della mostra (con alcune schede veneziane)," Antichitd Viva 23, 6 (1984): 32-44 and "Jacopo Sansovino and the Engraved Memorials" (see n. 83), 137-140. Concerning collaboration during this period, see Wendy Stedman Sheard and John T. Paoletti, eds., Collaboration in the Italian Renaissance (New Haven, 1978).

107 See Luisa Vertova, "Lorenzo Lotto: collaborazione o rivalita tra pittura e scultura?" in Lorenzo Lotto, ed. Pietro Zampetti and Vittorio Sgarbi (Treviso, 1981): 401-414; Franca Cortesi Bosco, "Lorenzo Lotto dal polittico di Ponter- anica alla commissione della Santa Lucia di Iesi," in Omaggio a Lorenzo Lotto (Jesi, 1981), Notizie da Palazzo Albani 13, 1 (1984): 56-80; Bruce Boucher, "Sansovi- no's Medici Tabernacle and Lotto's Sacramental Allegory: New Evidence for their Relationship," Apollo 114 (1981): 156-161; Tafuri and Foscari, L'armonia (see n. 42), 90-101; Davies, "Italian Plaquette," 279-282.

108 Tafuri, Venezia (see n. 64), 147. '09 Manuela Morresi, "Giangiorgio Trissino, Sebastiano Serlio e la villa di

Cricoli: ipotesi per una revisione attributiva," Annali di Architettura 6 (1984): 116-134.

10 Tafuri, Ricerca (see n. 36): 305-346.

Illustration Credits Figures 1,2,3,5,6, 8,9, 12, 13. M. I. Biggi, Venice Figure 4. Dipartimento di Storia dell'Architettura,Venice Figure 7. Berlin, Kupferstichkabinett, inv. K.d.Z. 26451, 79.D.34 Figure 10. Bohm, Venice Figure 11. A.Jemolo, Rome Figure 14. 0. Bertotti Scamozzi, Lefabbriche e i disegni di Andrea Palladio, I, tav. XLI