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Grant number: RO-10527-70

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Williams College (Williamstown, MA 01267-2600)
Samuel Y. Edgerton (Project Director: May 1970 to present)

The Renaissance Painter Witnesses Violent Death

ABSTRACT: Study in central and northern Italy to show how scenes of death by Italian artist of 14th and 15th centuries often reflect a knowledge of anatomy and physiology not recorded in medical science until the mid-16th century. Artist of the Middle Ages and early Renaissance had familiarity with actual scenes of violent death--living in the midst of the plague, hand-to-hand warfare and public executions--causing them to be unusually observant of human anatomy at the same time they were becoming more empirical toward the world as a whole. Study illustrates interrelation of humanities and medicine at that time. Furthers study of art history as a whole, and PI's study of science and art in the Reanissance in particular, by examing the history of knowledge about human anatomy and its relevance to art of the period. Study continuation of research begun on NEH Summer Stipend (67-4222). Funds for support and travel.

Project fields:
Art History

Basic Research

Research Programs

Total amounts:
$4,460 (approved)
$4,460 (awarded)

Grant period:
5/1/1970 – 4/30/1971