Although we live in an era when vast sums of money are lavished on wedding festivities, we are t unique: in Renaissance Italy, middle- and upper-class families spent ermous amounts on marriages that were intended to establish or consolidate the status and lineage of one or both of the respective families. This lavishly illustrated book explores the social and ecomic background to marriage in Renaissance Florence and discusses the objects-paintings, sculptures, furniture, jewelry, clothing, and household items-associated with marriage and ongoing family life. By analyzing urban palaces and their furnishings, Jacqueline Marie Musacchio shows how families interacted with art on a daily basis. This began at marriage, when the bride brought a dowry and the groom provided the home and its furnishings. It continued with the accumulation of objects during the marriage and the birth of children. And it ended with the redistribution of these same objects at death. Through the examination of art, documents, literature, and more, this lively book traces the life cycle of the Florentine Renaissance family through the art and objects that surrounded them in their home.
Jacqueline Marie Musacchio is associate professor of art at Wellesley College. She is the author of The Art and Ritual of Childbirth in Renaissance Italy (Yale).