or, search Yale Library holdings below:

Yale Library's Catalog

Yale Library's catalog; start here. Help | Search | Advanced

Yale Finding Aid Database

Finding aids for archival and manuscript materials. Help | Search | Advanced

Digital Collections

Thousands of partial and fully digitized items from a wide range of materials from the Beinecke collections. Help | Search | Advanced

Uncataloged Acquisitions

Brief records of material not found in Orbis or the Finding Aid Database. Help | Search

Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

Descriptions of Medieval and Renaissance manuscripts. Help | Search

Yale Papyrus Collection

Catalog of the papyri held at Beinecke; includes digital images. Help | Search
Celebrating Italian Festivals
Monday, September 24, 2007 to Monday, January 7, 2008

Celebrating Italian Festivals

Monday, September 24, 2007 to Monday, January 7, 2008

Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library

This exhibition of books produced between the 16th and 19th centuries documents religious, civic, and public festivals in the towns and provinces of Italy. Such festivals are as old as Italy itself, but the tradition of publishing lavishly illustrated books to record them began in the 16th century and was connected in most towns with aristocratic families and courts. Births and funerals, betrothals and weddings, elections and coronations, the visits of popes, princes, and princesses were the occasions for elaborate public events that included parades, dancing, singing, athletic competitions, mock battles, theater, opera, and banquets. Rulers of church and state competed to produce the most memorable events, and to this end they employed the best artists, architects, and engineers to design stage settings and floats; the finest actors and musicians for the performances; the best dancers for the ballets and riders for the equestrian demonstrations. Seeing these festivals as a reflection of their own prestige and a guarantor of their positions as rulers, they sought to document for posterity, and for personal propagandistic reasons, the splendor of their celebrations by having the leading artists and engravers produce the illustrations that embellish the festival books included in this exhibition. [ca. 65 items] 


Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library
121 Wall Street | New Haven, CT 06511
Campus Map

Tel: (203) 432-2977    Fax: (203) 432-4047

USPS: Mailing Address and Information

email: Ask a Librarian

Join our email list for the latest updates on exhibitions, events, and other library news.



Exhibition Gallery
Monday - Thursday: 9 am to 7 pm
Friday: 9 am to 5 pm
Saturday: 12 pm to 5 pm

Reading Room Hours
Monday - Thursday: 9 am to 6:45 pm
Friday: 9 am to 4:45 pm

Holiday Schedule and Closed Collections Schedule