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18 May 2014

Boticelli in Esztergom

The news was first announced at an international conference in Florence in 2007 entitled Humanism and Renaissance in Hungary.1 Painting conservator Zsuzsanna Wierdl and I presented the major findings of art historical and conservation research which has been underway in Esztergom since 2000. The restorer has been cleaning the Renaissance frescoes discovered in 1934–38 of the marks of later interventions.2 These include, first and foremost, cement fillings applied during the excavation, petrified grains of soil remnants on the surface, the drawn and painted additions from the restorations of the 1950s and 1970s, and the paraloid coating. The exposed representations thus reveal the painter’s original ideas in a manner never before seen by art historians.

Restoration began in 2000, when the Centre for Monument Conservation solicited bids for the salvaging and conservation of the mediaeval and renaissance frescoes in the castle of the first capital of the Hungarian Kingdom, Esztergom. The competition was won by Zsuzsanna Wierdl, an ICCROM graduate, who first studied at the Conservation Institute of the University of Fine Arts in Budapest. Her references included laudations for her conservation work involving important mediaeval wall paintings in and around Rome. She was clearly the most qualified applicant for the job in Esztergom, as indeed her efforts over the course of the past ten years have demonstrated. Numerous unforeseeable complications have arisen since Wierdl undertook her work, and the cost of the project has exceeded the funds allocated in 2000, but her expertise and experience have enabled her to address these tasks with conscientiousness, enthusiasm, and selflessness. In cooperation with specialists from the mural painting scientific committee of ICOMOS, of which she is president, she explored the original details and subsequent additions of the frescoes, including the cement fillings and subsequently added layers of paint, using the most up-to-date methods of physical examination and photo-technical procedures (the latter of which were first applied to wall paintings here). Wierdl has been cleaning the figural frescoes alone for some ten years now. It should be noted that the call for bids in 2000 called for the restoration of all the painted wall surfaces of the Esztergom castle, amounting to several square meters and including hundreds of broad-stones with fresco fragments. In other words, the undertaking was not restricted to the renaissance frescoes. By now, the examination of the mural paintings in the castle chapel dating from five different periods has been completed, and much of the surfaces of these paintings has been cleaned.3

These works represent the highest artistic standards and technical craftsmanship of the time in Europe, in particular the late 12th century ornamental medallions with lions from the time of Béla III,4 parts of the half-length figures of apostles from the Angevin times, and the cycle from the life of Christ.5 We have not been able to identify the masters of the 12th and 14th century frescoes, since at that time artists did not yet emphasize their individual personalities  the way they did in the 15th century, when they often went so far as to include their names as well.

The allegories of virtues, appearing in situ under the arches of a painted loggia on the northern wall of the first-floor great hall of the royal palace, are products of an artist in possession of extraordinary philosophical and emotional wealth, a poetic disposition and dynamic, decorative drawing skills. The wall paintings are fragmentary, since the higher levels of the palace had collapsed during the Ottoman wars and the debris had been deposited in the first-floor rooms. The defenders of the castle also filled this level in order to create a gun-emplacement, so the frescoes were buried for 340 years, from 1595 to 1935. During this time the surface layer of the frescoes painted ŕ secco was almost completely destroyed. The pictures visible today are usually the underdrawings, applied with the impulse of inspiration onto the fresh layer of plaster. While cleaning the surface, the restorer has found several tiny details that are invisible to the naked eye: gold and azurite grains, remnants of the completed frescoes, which have signal importance in the identification of the artist. They offer no small compensation for the loss of the originally finished form of the fresco. The cleaned images reveal signs of the artist’s creative process, subtle lines scratched with the silverpoint, brush strokes tracing these lines, and the compositional changes through which the painter was trying to find the most adequate artistic solution to render the allegories of virtue as expressively as possible. For example, the first version of the figure of Temperance, depicted head held upright, was later changed so that the head is now tilted slightly to the left. This has resulted in a more concentrated composition suggesting a more intense focus on the act of pouring. The client who ordered the paintings probably made it a point to emphasize that the pictures of the fundamental, cardinal virtues, which ensured the happiness of the individuals and through them of society (as described in Aristotle’s Nichomachean Ethics), should admonish the mid-15th century scholars, statesmen, and visitors to the palace to follow them unwaveringly. Even the underdrawings of the allegories of virtue in Esztergom seem to proclaim this intention! It is to the credit of the client who ordered the frescoes that he found and picked (presumably from among many candidates) this very artist, who espoused the client’s goal and visualized the fundamentals of Man – the virtues that make him truly human – with captivating artistic force, sure craftsmanship, and extraordinary talent. The head of the allegory of Temperance is shown in at least three postures, as indicated by the shifts of the eyes, crown of hair and ear. The changes, drawn with a firm hand, seem not the work of an assistant slavishly imitating the master’s sketches, but rather the work of the master himself.

Who was this artist? The question has preoccupied specialists and hosts of visitors since the discovery of the frescoes seventy years ago. Professor Tibor Gerevich, president of the National Committee of Historic Monuments and director of the Archaeological Institute of Pázmány Péter University of Sciences and the Hungarian Academy in Rome (and also a noted expert on 14th and 15th century Italian art) offered no opinion on this question. In 1948 Jolán Balogh presented a document dated 1494 that included the name Magister Albertus pictor Fiorentinus, a witness in a legal procedure in Esztergom.6 There is no further information about this painter or his work, but the decisive argument against connecting him to the Esztergom frescoes concerns style: the formal idiom of the allegories of virtue and the painted architecture of the loggia surrounding them represent the style of the mid-15th century, in keeping with the requirements worded by Leon Battista Alberti.7

In 1962–70 former assistant of Tibor Gerevich Dr. Zoltán Nagy served as director of the Esztergom Castle Museum. His primary research interest was the art patronage of János Vitéz, archbishop of Esztergom. He only touched on the question of the master of the frescoes in passing, indicating to affinities with works by the master of the Tarocchi del Mantegna pictures.8

I also began my art historical career in the Castle Museum of Esztergom. I was the first to demonstrate connections between the allegories of virtue and the art of Filippo Lippi (1406–69).9 I did not attribute the frescoes to the master, but rather to one or more of his numerous pupils. The condition of the frescoes at the time did not allow for a more accurate attribution, since they still bore the additions of conservators from the 1950s–’60s.

The millenary year of 2000 marked a new phase in research concerning the Esztergom frescoes. Continuous cleaning has revealed novel surprises day by day. The beauty, decorative richness, youthful vigour and deeply poetic appeal of the emerging figures – all the features of form and content, that is – make it seem increasingly apparent that the frescoes are the work of Botticelli. The head of the allegory of Fortitude shown in profile and the Hora face in the Birth of Venus, for instance, are exemplary. The reproduction shows the infrared photo of the Fortitude figure before the recent cleaning, revealing the first drawing sketched into the fresh plaster by the painter. This bears startling affinities with the profoundly sensitive depiction of the Hora head. The subtle differences between the outlines of the two profiles prove that it is not a copy of the Birth of Venus, but a new, original creation by the same artistic hand. This is indicated by the slightly opened lips of the Fortitude figure and the somewhat more arched line of the nose, which can be seen in other Botticelli works, such as a slightly upward glancing female figure in the Temptation of Christ fresco in the Sistine Chapel of the Vatican.

Over the years Zsuzsanna Wierdl has studied the technical procedures of 15th century Italian painters, particularly the works of Filippo Lippi and his disciples, and she has established beyond question that the master of the Esztergom frescoes sketched the composition as a brush drawing typical of Filippo Lippi’s art. This brush drawing, however, is traced on a feather-light silverpoint drawing, which in turn is characteristic exclusively of Botticelli’s frescoes and may derive from goldsmith’s art.10 As is well-known, Botticelli began his artistic studies with his brother, a goldsmith, and continued with Filippo Lippi. The master thought so highly of his pupil that he entrusted him with the teaching of his son Filippino Lippi. Nonetheless, when Filippo and his pupils went to Spoleto to execute

a major commission – the decoration of the huge sanctuary of the cathedral – Botticelli was not among them. Yet no monographer of Botticelli has ever wondered why he did not go to Spoleto. Where was he, what was he doing at that time? It seems by no means improbable that he had received an even more momentous commission. One can only hope that thorough research in the archives will reveal relevant information, but the close connection between the gradually unravelled frescoes of Esztergom and Botticelli’s art is itself perhaps more significant. And by the same token, we hope to see more clearly the precedents to the commission of Botticelli’s first authentic work, the Allegory of Fortitude (Florence, Uffizi Gallery), painted in the Mercanzia of Florence in 1470.

The slightly turned head of the young female figure, her eyes gazing into the distance and her face, which emanates divine wisdom, are rendered very similarly to the allegories of virtue in Esztergom. The three-quarter face and the lifted arm with the pointed elbow – a feature recurring in several of Botticelli’s works – also bear strong affinities with the Temperance figure of Esztergom.

In May 1470, Botticelli was commissioned by Tommaso Soderini, an adherent of the Medici family and one of the six directors of the Mercanzia, to paint two allegories of virtue for the Tribunale, the courtroom of the Mercanzia palace. The widely acknowledged painter of Florence Piero Pollaiuolo (1443–96), who had received a commission from the Mercanzia to paint all seven allegories of virtue a month earlier (on 18th December, 1469), contested the new commission. He took the case to court. During the deliberation, Soderini, supported by the Medici, prevailed in his efforts to ensure that at least one of the seven allegories of virtue be painted by Botticelli, the Allegory of Fortitude, which was completed in 1470. This story is well known in art history, but no one has ever asked what made Tommaso Soderini commission a young painter unknown in Florence to paint pictures when he had already arrived at an agreement with the prominent painter of the town a few months earlier. Moreover, why was he able to get support for this unlawful commission at the court trial? Thus, the allegory of Fortitude by the young, then unknown Sandro Mariano was set next to the six paintings by Piero Pollaiuolo in the courtroom of the Mercanzia. Today, they can be viewed together in the Uffizi Gallery. Botticelli’s stands out among them by virtue of its intellectual superiority and deep spirituality, as well as its decorative quality, which far surpasses the rest of the pictures. One cannot help inquiring why the prominent client wished to disrupt the unity of the cycle. Why was he so eager to acquire at least one painting by a no-name artist for Florence’s Mercanzia palace, even at the cost and risk of a legal procedure? One possible explanation could be that at a place of prominence somewhere outside Florence this painter had already earned fame with his representations of the allegories of virtue. News of this achievement must have reached Florence in 1470, after the commission was issued to Pollaiuolo. It was important for the Medici – and even worth a court trial – to have at least one of the allegories by this painter near the town hall, the Signoria. Where had Botticelli painted the figures that had brought his name into such great repute, and who had commissioned the work? It seems unlikely that they would have been done in any other city state or ducal court in Italy, as none had the prestige of Florence or the leading Medici family. There were, however, neighbouring states of considerable importance to Florence. Florentine merchants and bankers had subsidiaries and depots in various countries in Europe, and through these channels a network of artistic relations evolved as well.

In the 15th century the Hungarian Kingdom was saliently important for Florence. Hungary represented a safe place for Florentines to accumulate wealth and earn fame, particularly following the career of Filippo Scolari (+1427), who turned from a merchant’s apprentice into the leading military commander and hence the mightiest lord of the kingdom in the service of the Hungarian king Sigismund of Luxemburg. It was natural for Masolino da Panicale to give up his commission to decorate the chapel of Felice Brancacci, Florentine ambassador to Cairo, and comply with an invitation to go to Hungary. Though no works created by Masolino in Hungary survive, it was there that he met cardinal Branda Castiglione, from whom he would later receive commissions in Rome and Castiglione d’Olona that contributed significantly to the consummation of his art.

In the eyes of the Florentines, the Kingdom of Hungary had stood in some esteem for over a century. Dante’s undying masterpiece of the early 14th century, the Divine Comedy, which has a whole chapter (Paradiso, Canto VIII) extolling the titular Hungarian king Charles Martel of Anjou (1271–95) and Hungary, was well known in the 15th century. Charles Martel, the first-born son of Charles I of Anjou, king of Naples and Mary of Hungary, the daughter of the Hungarian king Stephen V, was heir to the Neapolitan throne. He was received with great ceremony by Dante on behalf of the city of Florence in 1294. Charles Robert

I, the son of Charles Martel, was king of Hungary from 1308. I In the socio-economic and cultural reorganization of the country Charles Robert relied largely on the Florentines as well. One sign of this was the introduction of a currency on Florentine model, the golden florin. Throughout the 14th century Florence gave testimonies of its respect for the Hungarian Kingdom. One notable manifestation was the festive reception – despite the papal prohibition – of Louis the Great of Anjou on his way against Naples. From the early 15th century, when Sigismund of Luxemburg’s reign in Hungary had been consolidated, and later, during the 32 years when Matthias Corvinus was in power, the involvement of the Florentines in the economic and cultural life of the Hungarian kingdom increased.

Bernardo Vespucci of Florence, brother to Amerigo, spent many years in Buda during Matthias’ reign as a job agent for Florentines. Large numbers of Italian – mainly Florentine – merchants and craftsmen arrived in Hungary, including outstanding artists, such as Chimenti Camicia, Benedetto da Maiano, Giovanni Dalmata, and others.

As part of the search for clues as to the identity of the master of the Esztergom frescoes, a search that has been going on for years, art historians have thoroughly investigated the art of Filippo Lippi and his contemporaries and pupils. The findings were presented in a separate volume of studies.11

It will unquestionably take several more years for restorers to complete the work of cleaning the renaissance frescoes of Esztergom. Nonetheless, the research undertaken by both conservators and art historians so far offers persuasive evidence in support of the contention that the entire mural decoration of the studiolo was designed on the basis of a unified artistic conception. The whole room was decorated by a single artist, as the research of art historians and technical specialists clearly suggests. It seems likely, considering the aforementioned details of history and the relationships between the two countries at the time, that this painter was the young Sandro Mariano of Florence, who was twenty years old at the time.

It is highly likely that Sandro was also encouraged by Bernardo Vespucci to set out on the long road to the Hungarian Kingdom. The Vespucci family was in the highest echelons of society in Florence: they gave three gonfaloniers and 24 priors to the city between 1350 and 1524.  Their palace is in the Ognissanti neighbourhood of the city, in Borgo Ognissanti, next to the Ospedale di Santa Maria dell’Umilta, which they founded around 1382. Sandro Mariano’s father, master tanner Mariano di Vanni Filipepi, purchased a house in Via Nuova (today Via del Porcellana) opening at the side of the Vespucci Palace. The Mariano and Vespucci families became next-door neighbours. Later the Vespucci family commissioned Botticelli, already of great renown in Florence, to paint the fresco Saint Augustine in his Study for their family chapel in the Ognissanti. It is still one of the finest ornaments of the church.

In the light of all this, it would be no surprise to find the twenty-year-old Sandro Mariano among the hosts of Italian, particularly Florentine merchants and artisans who came to work in Hungary. Given the lack of written documents (so far), conjectures concerning his activity in Esztergom rest on observation of the form and content of the in situ frescoes, which however have as much persuasive force as any written mention.



Who commissioned the frescoes in Esztergom?


Recent findings confirm the hypothesis made by art historian Antal Leopold in the 1930s and 1940s, notably that the chancellor of King Matthias and archbishop of Esztergom János Vitéz was the client who ordered the frescoes for his study.12 He began his administrative career in King Sigismund’s chancery. After the death of King Albert in 1439, he became the leader of the group of magnates actually governing the country: they elected Vladislav I Jagiello king of Hungary to rule during the infancy of King Ladislas V and then put János Hunyadi at the helm of the country. Later, Vitéz also served as Ladislas’ chancellor, and when the king died he freed Matthias Hunyadi (Corvinus), who had been detained by Czech George of Poděbrady, and helped him to the throne. After six years of diplomatic wrangling, Vitéz got the Hungarian Holy Crown back from Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III. At the same time, Europe lauded him as Lux Pannoniae for his humanist erudition and patronage of the arts.

The surviving letters and orations of János Vitéz13 clearly reveal that the governing principle of his life was to promote the reign of virtues. The painted allegories of the virtues, known for some two-thousand years from Aristotle’s Ethics, survive on the walls of the first-floor room of the archiepiscopal palace, on the ‘piano nobile’. The attributes of the solemn female figures of the allegories and the inscriptions above them clearly indicate their identities: PRUDENTIA, TEMPERANTIA, FORTITUDO, and JUSTITIA. On the basis of the fresco fragments, research has established that the painted loggia ran around the studiolo on all four walls, providing room for at least twelve figures. 15–16th century literary and art relics usually feature exactly twelve virtues.14 Above the allegories of virtue of the Esztergom palace, allegories of the planets were designed in a triumphal procession, as suggested by the fresco fragments of the collapsed vault of the room, such as the armoured figure of Mars, the god of war, standing above a chariot wheel, lion legs, an eagle, etc. Architect Dezső Várnai already pieced together the archivolt of the vaulting in 1935. It showed the constellations, the twelve signs of the Zodiac. Thus, above the allegories of virtue the cosmos triumphed, in accordance with the program prescribed by the archbishop who ordered the work, just as it triumphs in Dante’s vision of the first seven spheres of Paradise, in which each virtue is controlled by a planet. Above the theological virtues Faith, Hope, and Love, the Moon, Mercury and Venus appear, while the cardinal virtues are governed by the Sun, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn. Prudence triumphs in the Sun, Fortitude in Mars, Justice in Jupiter and Temperance in Saturn.

Knowledge about the close connection between man and the planets was transmitted from the ancient East to Europe by Hellenism. It was disseminated widely from the 13th century with the translation of the Arabic astrological writings into Latin. This knowledge was greatly improved upon by the scholars – physicists, mathematicians and astronomers – of 15th century humanism. One of the European centres of this scholarship was the court of János Vitéz in Nagyvárad (today Oradea, Romania) and later in Esztergom. It was on his commission that Georg Peuerbach, professor of Vienna University, made tables that helped calculate the eclipses of the moon and the sun in advance. They are called Tabulae Varadienses, as they took the longitude of Várad as the prime meridian. Peuerbach sent his work to János Vitéz, bishop of Várad, together with an eloquent letter in which he extolled the bishop’s scholarly merits and outstanding library. The book was a standard manual of European astronomers for two hundred years. A pupil of Peuerbach, Regiomontanus was also glad to comply with Archbishop János Vitéz’s invitation in 1465 to come and teach astronomy in Esztergom at the Academia Istropolitana. The archbishop had an observatory built for him in Esztergom and had various instruments produced so that he could continue with his research. Regiomontanus worked out the tables of the paths, orbits and declinations of the planets in Esztergom and dedicated them to the archbishop.

His dedication includes the following: “Thou art adorned with an awe-inspiring measure of scholarship and virtuosity. Although thou art ready to learn from the practitioners of the sciences, thou surpassest all of them with the wealth of thy knowledge. We who have come to thee as teachers acknowledge that we are thy pupils.”15

Archbishop János Vitéz’s character, which also shaped  his activity as a politician, was admired throughout Europe. In a letter in which he dedicated his work on Man, De homine, to János Vitéz Galeotto Marzio writes, “Who could be a worthier possessor of this book on Man than the most outstanding one, who alone among all his contemporaries deserves to be called Man in the strictest sense of the word? Searching all over the world, I have found no one whom I could compare with thee.”16

Johannes Argyropulos, who was the first person to publish the Latin translation of Aristotle’s works, dedicated the four books on the sky to János Vitéz: “If outstanding works are to be dedicated to outstanding persons, who else can

I dedicate this work to but thee?... Father, it has reached us that thou art outstanding and perfect... thou art praised as one who is temperate, persevering, just and wise. Thy generosity and splendour, great intellect and rare amiability are blazoned... Receive, my wisest Father, this work, which I have translated from Greek into Latin for thee and for thy delight.”

Yet another facet of primate and royal chancellor János Vitéz’s character was his patronage of the arts. The thirty-six known volumes of his famous library17 and their splendid painted ornamentation – outstanding among the European libraries of his time – offer clear proof of the archbishop Vitéz’s versatile humanist culture and great artistic sensitivity. Aware of the formative impact of art on man and society, he must have deemed it important to depict the moral principles – the foundations of individual and society – at the highest artistic level in his representative first-floor working room, also the reception room, of the archiepiscopal palace.

It is noteworthy that the Signoria of Florence wrote two letters to the archbishop of Esztergom János Vitéz in 1469 asking him reverently to intercede with King Matthias as his chancellor and persuade him not to pay heed to the machinations of Venice and not to break relations with Florence. In tribute, the city of Florence also sent the archbishop a lion at the same time.18 This indicates that Florence was in direct contact with Archbishop János Vitéz and deeply respected his authority.

In 1943, towards the end of his life, the noted humanist Vespasiano da Bisticci (1421–98) of Florence – who provided for the mightiest personages of the cultured world from his large copying workshop and book trade and was personally related to most of them – recorded the lives of 120 humanists grouped by social rank. After the popes and kings, his narratives of the lives of the 28 archbishops and bishops also include a profound eulogy of the archbishop of Esztergom János Vitéz. He writes, “the castle of Esztergom, which he has formed in large part, was the finest one in the world.” He expresses his great admiration “for the famous Greco-Latin library in which all important works could be found. He invited painters, sculptors, marquetry artists and masters in all branches of the arts to elevate his country to higher standards. His career as statesman and politician has always been governed by the moral virtues.”19 The warm tone and intimacy of the biography suggests that Vespasiano da Bisticci knew János Vitéz personally. He embarks with deep pity on the archbishop’s political clash with king Matthias, in which he was led by his love for the country. The details of the description of Vitéz’s arrest and detention by the king and his subsequent death reveal that the narrative was written by an eye-witness. The fact that Vespasiano da Bisticci considered it imperative to record the events of Vitéz’s life some twenty years after his death offers further evidence of the respect he had for the archbishop.



When might the frescoes of Esztergom have been painted?


As noted above, on the basis of the critical analyses of the style of the frescoes one can date the representations of virtue the mid-15th century. Also, mention has been made of János Vitéz’s scientific work and role as a patron of scholarship, which earned him the Lux Pannoniae title. Again, it is common knowledge that he did much for the schooling of Hungarian youth, the best known of whom was Janus Pannonius, and that he was the founder and chief chancellor of the Hungarian university of the age of King Matthias, the Academia Istropolitana.20

The internationally renowned university of four faculties equipped with papal permission and equal rights to Bologna opened its gates in Esztergom on June 20th, 1467. Prominent scholars of Europe were only too glad to give up their chairs in Vienna, Paris, or Krakow for a teaching post in Esztergom, because they knew János Vitéz, who provided them with auspicious conditions for research and publication. One should keep in mind that Vitéz had an observatory built for Regiomontanus to promote his research in Esztergom. He lent considerable support to the natural sciences. The painted decoration of János Vitéz’s palace in Esztergom as the visual presentation of the program of the university was most likely completed by the festive inauguration of the university. Since János Vitéz was appointed archbishop in 1465, one can presume that the frescoes were painted between 1465 and 1467. This dating might also shed light on the beginning of Botticelli’s career, on the background of the artist’s first known commission (so far), the painting of the Allegory of Fortitude for Florence’s Mercanzia in 1470. When Botticelli appeared in Florence in 1470, he had not only won this significant commission, but had also founded a workshop of his own. His pupils included the son of his master Filippo Lippi, Filippino. He would not have had such great prestige and wealth had he not been in possession of great artistic achievements that had already won him considerable renown.




1 Prokopp Mária: Gli affreschi quattrocenteschi dello Studiolo del Primate del Regno d’Ungheria a Esztergom: una nuova attribuzione. Firenze, Villa I Tatti, The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies. The proceedings of the conference are forthcoming.

2 Prokopp – Vukov – Wierdl: Az Erények nyomában [In the wake of The Virtues],  Budapest, Studiolo, 2009.

3 Wierdl Zsuzsanna: Az esztergomi palotakápolna és a Vitéz János – Studiolo falképeinek restaurálása [Restoration of the palace chapel and the frescoes in János Vitéz’s Studiolo in Esztergom castle]. Műemlékvédelmi Szemle, XI  (2001), 1–2, 89–110. – Prokopp Mária: Új eredmények Vitéz János esztergomi érsek dolgozószobájának falképeiről [New findings about the frescoes of the study in archbishop of Esztergom János Vitéz’s study], Debreceni Disputa, 2007, V (2007), 7–8, 113–121. – Prokopp  Mária: Az esztergomi Vár falképeinek megtisztítása [The cleaning of the frescoes in Esztergom castle], Örökség, XII, 2008/1, 4

4 Prokopp Mária: III. Béla király esztergomi palotakápolnájának festészeti dísze. Az oroszlános freskó művészettörténeti vizsgálata. Tanulmányok Horváth István tiszteletére [The painted ornament of King Béla III’s palace chapel in Esztergom. The art historical examination of the fresco with lions. Studies in honour of István Horváth], Esztergom, 2010.

5 Prokopp Mária: Az esztergomi várkápolna falképeinek stílusvizsgálata [Stylistic analysis of the frescoes in the chapel of Esztergom castle], Művészettörténeti Értesítő, XXII (1973) 3, 187–198.

6 Balogh Jolán: Magister Albertus pictor florentinus. Annuario, 1947, Istituto Ungherese di Storia dell’Arte, Firenze, 1948, 74–80.

7 Prokopp Mária: Johannes Vitéz, arcivescovo di Esztergom e Leon Battista Alberti, in: In memoriam Hajnóczi Gábor, eds.: Nuzzo Armando, W. Somogyi Judit, Piliscsaba, 2008, 221–228. – Vukov Konstantin: Az esztergomi Studiolo falképe és a festett architektúra [The fresco and painted architecture in the Esztergom Studiolo]. Omnis creatura significans. Tanulmányok Prokopp Mária 70. születésnapjára [Studies  for the 70th birthday of Mária Prokopp], Budapest, CentrArt Egyesület, 2009, 171–176.

8 Nagy Z: Ricerche cosmologiche nella corte umanistica di Giovanni Vitéz. In: Rapporti veneto-ungheresi

all’epoca del Rinascimento. Ed. T. Klaniczay, Budapest, 1975, 65–93. – Nagy Zoltán: A Nap diadala a Mátyás Kálvária talapzatán [The triumph of the Sun on the foot of the Matthias Calvary]. In: Filológiai közlöny, 1968/3–4,  435–460.

9 Prokopp Mária: Vitéz János esztergomi palotája [The Esztergom palace of János Vitéz], Memoria Saeculorum Humgariae, 2: Janus Pannonius, Budapest, 1975, 255–264. – Prokopp Mária: Italian Renaissance Frescoes in the Castle of the Hungarian Archbishop at Esztergom, Renaissance Studies in Honor of Craig Hugh Smyth, II, Firenze, 1985, 365–379.

10 Prokopp – Vukov – Wierdl: Az Erények nyomában [In the wake of the Virtues],  Budapest, Studiolo, 2009, 36–74.

11 Prokopp Mária: Az esztergomi vár reneszánsz falképeinek stílusvizsgálata a 2000-től folyó restaurálással párhuzamosan [Stylistic analysis of the renaissance frescoes in Esztergom castle parallel with restoration work since 2000]. In: Prokopp – Vukov – Wierdl: Az Erények nyomában [In the wake of the Virtues], Budapest, Studiolo, 2009, 86–117.

12 Lepold Antal: Vitéz János esztergomi dolgozószobája [János Vitéz’s study in Esztergom]. Szépművészet, 1944, 115–119.

13 Boronkai Iván: Vitéz János levelei és politikai beszédei [The letters and political speeches of János Vitéz], in: Magyar Ritkaságok [Hungarian rarities], Budapest, 1987.

14 Knapp Éva: Egy XVII. század eleji vers képi hátteréhez [On the visual background of an early 17th century poem], Omnis creatura significans. Tanulmányok Prokopp Mária 70. születésnapjára [Studies for the 70th birthday of Mária Prokopp], Budapest, 2009, 375-382. – Jankovics József: “Akadtam egy picturára...” Rimay János és Madách Gáspár allegorikus versének képzőművészeti vonatkozásai [I’ve come across a picture... connections of János Rimay’s and Gáspár Madách’s allegorical poems with visual arts], Irodalomtörténeti Közlemények 86 /1982, 652-656.

15 Johannes De Königsberg: Tabulae directionum. Nürnberg, 1475. (The first printed publication)

16 Galeotti Narniensis: De homine, libro duo, Bazel, 1517.

17 Csapodi-Gárdonyi, Klára: Die Bibliothek des Johannes Vitéz, Studia Humanitatis, Budapest, 1984.

Földesi Ferenc (ed.): Csillag a holló árnyékában. Vitéz János és a humanizmus kezdetei Magyarországon [Star in the shadow of the raven. János Vitéz and the beginnings of humanism in Hungary], exhibition at the National Széchényi Library: 14 March–15 June 2008.

18 HAS Coll. of Manuscrips, Florentine document, collection of copies for the Historical Committee, Ms 4994/I.

19 Vespasiano da Bisticci: Vite di uomini illustri, First complete edition on the basis of the Vatican manuscript: Angelo MAI, Roma, 1839. – Gilmone, Myron P.: Vespasiano: Renaissance Princes Popes and Prelates, New York, Harper Torchbook, 1963. – Vespasiano da Bisticci: Vite di uomini illustri del secolo XV, a cura di Paolo d’Aancona ed. Erhard Aeschilmann, Milano, 1951, 169–172.

20 Prokopp Mária: Az egyetem-szervező Vitéz János esztergomi érsek [Archbishop of Esztergom János Vitéz, the organizer of the university], in: Változatok a történelemre, Tanulmányok Székely György tiszteletére [Variations on history. Studies in honour of György Székely], eds.: Erdei Gyöngyi–Nagy Balázs, Monumenta Historica Budapestiensis XIV, Budapest, 2004, 263–268.

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