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Name of Object:
The laboratories of the Institute of Sciences in Bologna
Also known as: The visit of Frederick Christian of Poland to the Institute of the Sciences of Bologna
Date of the object:
November/Dicember 1739
Antonio Alessandro Scarselli  (1684, Bologna-1773, Bologna)
Type of object:
Holding Museum:
State Archive, Bologna
Bologna, Italy
Period of activity:
Museum Inventory Number:
ASBo, Anziani Consoli, Insignia, volume XIII, c. 140
Material(s) / Technique(s):
Illumination on parchment
Place of production:
400x530 mm
Workshop / Movement:
Eighteenth-century Bolognese illuminator and engraver
Archive of the Bolognese Senate
The Insignia degli Anziani Consoli, bound in 16 volumes and housed in the State Archive of Bologna, are documents on parchment commissioned every two months, from 1530 to 1796, to celebrate the eight Anziani Consoli and the Gonfaloniere di giustizia, a group of magistrates ruling. From the end of the sixteenth-century the names of the magistrates were flanked by their coats of arms and by the depiction of a significant event that had taken place during the bimester of their charge: an extraordinary visual chronicle illustrating more than two centuries of the city's history with six pictures a year. This picture, referred to the last bimester of 1739, shows the inside of the Institute of Sciences of Bologna during the visit of prince Frederick Christian of Poland. The prince is sitting and examines a fortress plan; in the background are visible from the left: the anatomy room, the school of the nude, the Institute library. On the top the coats of arms of the eight Anziani Consoli and, in the middle, that of the Gonfaloniere di giustizia.
Current Owner:
(Italian government)
Original Owner:
Anziani Consoli of the town of Bologna
How date and origin were established:
The date of the illumination (1739, last bimester), the subject depicted and the patronage (the Anziani Consoli of Bologna) are inscribed in the caption, below the picture.
How object was obtained:
This illumination, like the whole series, has always been housed in the archive of the Bolognese senate, inside the municipal palace. It was transferred to the State Archive in 1874, when it was created.
Selected bibliography:
Plessi, G. Le Insignia degli Anziani del Comune dal 1530 al 1796. Catalogo-Inventario, Rome, 1954.
Matteucci, A. M. “La cultura dell'effimero a Bologna nel XVII secolo”, Barocco Romano e Barocco Italiano. Il teatro, l'effimero, l'allegoria (eds. M. Fagiolo and M. L. Madonna), Rome, 1985, pp. 159-173.
Zanni Rosiello, I. "Le Insignia degli Anziani: un autoritratto celebrativo", Società e storia: 52, 1991, pp. 329-362.
Crespi, L. Vite de' pittori bolognesi, Rome, 1769.
Cavazza, M. Settecento inquieto. Alle origini dell'Istituto delle scienze di Bologna, Bologna, 1990.
Citation of this web page:
Massimo  Giansante "The laboratories of the Institute of Sciences in Bologna" in Discover Baroque Art. Place: Museum With No Frontiers, 2015.;BAR;it;Mus13_C;37;en
Prepared by: Massimo Giansante
Translation by: Antonella Mampieri
This form is a provisional working version and has not been copy-edited yet.
MWNF Working Number: IT2 41