Italy has a long and interesting history of charity.The number and variety of charitable societies or fraternities was so great that in the 16th century in the History of Florence Benedetto Varсhi presented their elaborate typology. He emphasised their distinctive features: from those intended for a wide audience, massively receiving religious and ecstatic pleasure, including from realising themselves as part of a large and influential organism, to societies of fl agellants, reclusively scourging themselves in private chapels. Varсhi was not greatly interested in religious diff erences between charitable societies, but in social ones, for example, some were more “noble”, others more “vulgar”. In this study, an attempt is made to present the main charitable societies that existed in Florence in the 13th — 14th centuries. Their description takes into account certain features. First, the types of charitable fraternities are given in accordance with Benedetto Varсhi’s fi ndings and modern studies, in particular by Professor John Henderson, and secondly, with the aim of proving that these societies used arts to designate for society various aspects of their activity. Thus, one of the most memorable and vivid examples of such a “union” was the frescoes “Captains of Mercy transfer abandoned children and orphans to the family and adoptive mothers” by Niccolo di Pietro Gerini and Ambrogio di Baldese, as well as “Misericordia Domini” by Bernardo Daddi.
Bernardo Daddi, Orsanmichele, confraternity, art, fresco, fl agellants, laudesi, cross, Andrea Orcagna, Niccolo di Pietro Gerini, Ambrogio di Baldese, Misericordia, “Misericordia Domini”
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Parfenova Elena Place of work:
Bauman Moscow State Technical University; 5/1 Vtoraya Baumanskaya Str., Moscow, 105005, Russian Federation; Post:
Lecturer; ORCID: 0000-0001-7499-0359