Sforza caricature and the Pope

#1
Hello

this detail must have been discussed elsewhere but I only found scarce references on various boards and mailing list archives (I saw one allusion by SteveM on aeclectic and nothing here or on TarotL archives - maybe my search was too scarce too ?)

On page 75 of french translation of Kaplan's first encyclopedia, he mentions caricatures ordered by the Pope representing Sforza as an hanged traitor. The only source he cites is a book by Geoffrey Trease, The Condottieri. From what I've found online about Trease and this book, it appears that it is more of a fiction and Trease is presented as someone who does not cite many actual historical sources (only second hand).
Are there any actual sources concerning this caricature or was it only a fancy note Kaplan added ? My opinion is obviously that this is a fiction but I thought it might be worth checking with you - in case anyone else wonders and in case I'm wrong !

Any pointer welcome,

Bertrand

Re: Sforza caricature and the Pope

#2
Hi Bertrand!
In Vol I of Kaplan, indeed it does mention Geoffrey Trease- but in Vol 11 it does not- but here I will type out what he says.
By 1409, the great Schism in the papacy resulted in three rival Popes, each claiming to be the rightful wearer of the Papal tiara. Sforza saw service with the Popes, but the Papal treasury was in such dire financial condition that his services often went unpaid. Sforza decided to serve King Ladislas of Naples. John XX111 was furious at Sforza's desertion and he caused a picture to be made of Sforza as a traitor, hanging by one leg after the custom of the time, with the caption:
I am Sforza, peasant of Cotignola and traitor;
I have betrayed the Church twelve times,
Against my Honour,
I have broken promises, treaties and pacts.

The scene is strikingly similar to that shown on the Hanged Man card of the Pierpont-Bergamo Tarrochi pack.
This was Muzio Attendolo, Francesco's father. The Index in Vol 11, unlike Volume 1, does not mention Trease.
I have read the book, and while a great read it is not a scholarly work and I did not find the inscription in it- that Kaplan cites in Vol 11. I have no idea where Kaplan got the caption from. Reviewers of Trease say he was meticulous in conveying time and place especially for his young adult audiences. He, through his many great historical fiction books gave them a thirst for History. The book in question is one of the very few in English about Renaissance soldiers and in the main the facts are accurate, as far as I could tell.

~Lorredan
The Universe is full of magical things patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper.
Eden Phillpotts

Re: Sforza caricature and the Pope

#3
I know the story from Klaus Schelle, Die Sforza, a German book. So likely, it's an old story, not depending on an English author.

Muzio Attendola Sforza
http://www.condottieridiventura.it/cond ... ignola.htm
[May 1412]
Defeziona nel campo del re di Napoli per una serie di motivazioni, che vanno dallo sdegno per l’Orsini, al ritardo cronico nell’incasso delle paghe ed alla promessa di una maggiore condotta e di feudi nel regno. Chiede il commiato e parte da Roma: invia a Ladislao d’Angiò in ostaggio Micheletto Attendolo, Gherardo da Cotignola e Bettuccio Attendolo con una squadra di 300 cavalli. Si accampa sul monte Algido, fra Tuscolo e Velletri, al fine di proseguire verso Napoli. L’antipapa tenta di impedire la sua diserzione e gli invia 36000 fiorini per mezzo del cardinale di Sant’ Angelo, non a saldo delle paghe pregresse, ma per affrontare le spese causate dalla nuova condotta. Lo Sforza se ne sta sostanzialmente inattivo in attesa che scada la ferma, accontentandosi solamente di rifornire Roma di frumento e di foraggio che gli è garantito dai nobili romani suoi amici. Subito dopo si unisce a Cancello con le truppe regie comandate da Conte da Carrara e da Pieretto de Andreis e procede su Roma ed Ostia. L’antipapa (agosto) lo fa dipingere impiccato per il piede destro su tutti i ponti e le porte di Roma mentre tiene nella destra una zappa da contadino e nella sinistra un cartello che lo svillaneggia per dodici tradimenti fatti alla Chiesa. E’ sfidato a duello dall’Orsini: tutto finisce in nulla con una serie di lettere oltraggiose.
Huck
http://trionfi.com

Re: Sforza caricature and the Pope

#4
Hi Bertrand...

In A. Vitali:
Muzio Sforza Attendolo seems to have been sentenced to the same torment by Antipope John XXIII who in 1412 denounced him as a traitor for his alliance with the enemy, the king of Naples Ladislao. In his Annali d’Italia (Annals of Italy), Muratori wrote that the Pope felt so offended that he had him painted hanged by the right foot, under a sign in which he was found guilty of twelve betrayals. We receive more detailed information from the chronicles of the time: “On the order of our Pope, he was painted on all the bridges and on all the doors of Rome, suspended by the right foot from the gallows as a traitor of the Holy Mother Church, and Sforza Attendolo held a hoe in his right hand and in his left hand an inscription that said : I am Sforza peasant of Cotignola, traitor, that betrayed the church 12 times breaking my honour, promises, chapters and pacts”. This case is important for the number of things he was blamed for, corresponding with the Traitor of tarot cards. Whoever initiated this action knew that people would immediately connect that number to something known, so we must ask whether the XII as well as indicating the twelfth apostle, Judas, also reflected the image of the Hanged Man already present in the tarot cards. If this were the case, immediate recognition would have been much easier.
http://www.associazioneletarot.it/page. ... 08&lng=ENG
When a man has a theory // Can’t keep his mind on nothing else (By Ross)

Re: Sforza caricature and the Pope

#5
Thanks a lot - so I was wrong and misunderstood Tease reviews (and misjudged his work, shame on me)

Thanks to your replies I looked again and found the following at letarot.it, but my italian is much too rough to get exactly what it is about and where the informations come from.
Allo stesso supplizio sembra essere stato condannato Muzio Attendolo Sforza dall’Antipapa Giovanni XXIII che nel 1412 lo denunciò come traditore, per essersi alleato ad un suo nemico, il re di Napoli Ladislao. Nei suoi Annali d’Italia il Muratori scrive che il Papa si sentì tanto offeso che lo fece dipingere impiccato per il piede destro, con sotto un cartello in cui veniva condannato reo di dodici tradimenti. Una più dettagliata informazione ci giunge dalle cronache del tempo: “Per ordine del Signor nostro Papa fu dipinto su tutti i ponti e su tutte le porte di Roma, sospeso pel piede destro alla forca, quale traditore della Santa Madre Chiesa, Sforza Attendolo e teneva una zappa nella mano destra, e nella mano sinistra una scritta che diceva così: Io sono Sforza vilano de la Cotignola, traditore, che XII tradimenti ho facti alla Chiesa contro lo mio honore, promissioni, capitoli, pacti aio rocti”.
Kaplan's text in bold.

Bertrand

Re: Sforza caricature and the Pope

#7
I had no reason to doubt this story, but I couldn’t precisely answer the question about the source, so I started with the first person I knew who related it to Tarot – namely, Gertrude Moakley in 1966. On page 96, she says her source is Clemente Assum, Francesco Sforza (1945), p. 17. On page 42, note 6, she also notes Cecilia Mary Ady’s classic A History of Milan Under the Sforza (1907) for her information about Muzio, so there were two places to begin.

Assum’s book is not available for viewing anywhere that I can find, but Ady’s is available in full. On page 3, she tells the story: “As early as 1411, Pope John XXIII, furious at Sforza’s desertion of his service for that of king Ladislas of Naples, caused his enemy to be depicted hanging from his right leg and holding an axe in his hand, while the following lines were attached to the picture:-
Io sono Sforza, villano della Cotignola, traditore;
Che dodici tradimenti ho fatto alla
Chiesa contro lo mio onore.
Promissioni, capitoli, patti haio rotti
.’”

She translates:
“I am Sforza, peasant of Cotignola and traitor.
Twelve times have I betrayed the Church, contray to my honour.
Promises, treaties, compacts have I broken.”

And she adds – “To be hung from the right leg was a traitor’s punishment.”

Regrettably, she does not give a source for this particular story!

Another secondary source I had up my sleeve was Gherardo Ortalli, La peinture infamante du XIIIe au XVIe siècle (1994; this is a revised French translation of his original La Pittura infamante nei secoli XIII-XVI, 1979). Since it concerns a famous “shame painting” I was not surprised to discover that he mentions it (p. 37) and gives his source as Ludovico Muratori, Annali d’Italia, for the year 1412.

I hadn’t used this particular Muratorian source, but of course Internet Archives has it, complete, in several editions. The first edition I found was that of 1794. In volume 20, on page 377, he recounts the story and gives the first line of the inscription as “IO SONO SFORZA, VILLANO dalla COTIGNUOLA” (he doesn’t quote the rest). He gives his source in a footnote as “Bonincontr. Annal. T. 21. Rer. Ital.
(By the way, in the earliest edition I found at the Internet Archive, 1763, it is volume 9, p. 50. In the 1818 edition, it is volume 13, p. 117).

The abbreviation “T. 21. Rer. Ital.” is familiar enough – Tome 21, Rerum italicarum scriptores. But I had never heard of this “Bonincontr.” before. Therefore I guessed it might be Bonincontro, and the title “Annali”, and searched. A few leads led me to Bonincontri, Annales ab anno 1360 usque ad 1452, which was published in the RIS (=Rerum Italicarum Scriptores), vol. (=t for tomo/tome) xxi, pp. 1-125. This volume is not online anywhere I can find, so took another angle and tried to find information about this Bonincontri. Soon enough, I found he was called Lorenzo Bonincontri (da San Miniato), and he lived from 1410 to 1491. So he would be too young to have witnessed the event. He must have had a source himself.

In the meantime I had also come across another reference in English, that gave a different primary source, but also in Muratori. This was Mandell Creighton, A History of the Papacy During the Period of the Reformation (London, 1882), pp. 243-244.

He tells the history as follows:

“For some time Sforza served under Alberigo da Barbiano; then he led a band of his own, and fought for Florence in its war against Pisa. John XXIII. took him into his pay for the war against Naples, and conferred on him in 1411 the lordship of his native town of Cotignola. But Sforza quarrelled with the Paolo Orsini, who he saw was likely to get more from the Pope than himself. He listened to the overtures of Ladislas, and when, in the beginning of May 1412, John summoned his generals to Rome, that he might consult with them about future operations, Sforza abruptly retired from the city, and took up a position at Colonna. The Pope in alarm sent a Cardinal with 36,000 ducats to urge him to return. Sforza enquired whether he was to look upon this sum as arrears of old pay or earnest for new service. When the Cardinal answered that it was prepayment for a fresh engagement, Sforza replied, ‘Then I will not take it. I left Rome because I could not trust Paolo Orsini.’ On May 19 he quitted the Pope’s service, declaring himself on the side of Ladislas, and, after making a hostile demonstration against Ostia, rode off to Naples. John took his revenge by hanging Sforza in effigy from all the bridges and gates of the city; the figure was suspended by the right foot, and in one hand held a hoe, in the other a paper, with the legend –

I am Sforza, peasant of Cotignola, traitor,
Who twelve times have betrayed the Church against my honour;
Promises, compacts, agreements have I broken.

The Pope’s humour was coarse, but he knew the manners of the camp, and could answer condottieri after their own fashion.

((quoted from) Antonius Petri (Mur. xxiv. 1032):
Io sono Sforza, villano della Cotognola, traditore,
Che dodici tradimenti ho fatti alla Chiesa, contro lo mio onore:
Promessioni, capitoli, patti ho io rotti.


So who was this Antonius Petri? Muratori’s RIS vol. xxiv was also not online (incidentally, this transcription clears up what seems to be an error in Ady, the word “haio” – “ho io” makes a lot more sense).

Searching for “Antonius Petri” brings up some results, as does Italianizing it as “Antonio Pietro”. In any case, the text in question that he wrote is called Diarium Romanum, and it recounts, first-hand, events in Rome from 19 October 1404 to 25 September 1417. Muratori published it in 1732 as part 5 of volume 24 of his RIS. This must have been the source that Bonincontri used. Why Muratori himself, and other later authors besides Creighton haven’t referred to it, I don’t know. I have failed to find any other biographical information about Antonio Pietro, other than that he is also called Antonio Pietro dello Schiavo, and Antonio di Pietro Schiavo, a “Roman diarist”, by Margaret Harvey in her book The English in Rome, 1362-1420: Portrait of an Expatriate Community (Cambridge University Press, 1999).

To sum up, it appears that a contemporary witness in Rome is the origin of the story.

Moakley (1966) depends on Assum, and Assum depends on ?
Moakley might also depend on Ady, and Ady depends on ?

Ortalli (1979/1994) depends on Muratori (1732), who depends on Bonincontri in his note to the Annali d'Italia for the events of 1412.

Creighton (1882) depends on Antonius Petri (active 1404-1417), published by Muratori.

Lorenzo Bonincontri, himself too young to know first hand about this event, must have depended on Antonio Pietro.


If anyone has access to Muratori's RIS series, please look up volumes 21 for Bonincontri and 24 for Antonius Petri. For the latter, it is technically volume 24, part 5. If true to form, it should be listed chronologically in the margins, so just look up the year 1412. It should be close to the beginning, since all the histories that recount the story chronologically, like Muratori's Annali d'Italia, put it at the beginning of the year (since it happened in May).
Image

Re: Sforza caricature and the Pope

#8
Hi friend, god job! Thanks
Searching for “Antonius Petri” brings up some results, as does Italianizing it as “Antonio Pietro”. In any case, the text in question that he wrote is called Diarium Romanum, and it recounts, first-hand, events in Rome from 19 October 1404 to 25 September 141
I cant read this book...

http://books.google.es/books?id=1HEtAQA ... CD8Q6AEwBA

But, in this article:

http://centri.univr.it/rm/biblioteca/SC ... -Muzio.pdf

find this pasage in the note foot, page 8:

43 Vale la pena di riportare il bel passo cronistico del Diarium Romanum di Antonio di Pietro da cui è tratta
la memoria:«Die Mercurii 17. [1412] dicti mensis Augusti, fuit depictus de mandato Domini nostri Papae per
omnes Pontes et Portas Urbis suspensus per pedem dextrum super furcam tamquam proditor Sanctae Matris
Ecclesiae Sforza, et in manu dextera tenebat unam zappam, et in manu sinistra tenebat unam scriptam sic
dicendo: Io son Sforza Villano della Cotognola, Traditore, Che dodeci tradimenti ho fatti alla Chiesa contro lo
mio onore; Promissioni, Capitoli, Patti hajo rotti»; Diarium Romanum ab anno MCCCCIV. usque ad
MCCCCXVII. auctore Antonio Petri, in Rerum Italicarum Scriptores, XXIV, Mediolani 1738, a cura di L.A.
Muratori, coll. 1031-1032; Il Diario Romano di Antonio di Pietro dello Schiavo, a cura di F. Isoldi, ibidem,
24, parte 5, Bologna 1922, p. 75. Anche BALESTRACCI, p. 44.
When a man has a theory // Can’t keep his mind on nothing else (By Ross)

Re: Sforza caricature and the Pope

#9
mmfilesi wrote:Hi friend, god job! Thanks
Searching for “Antonius Petri” brings up some results, as does Italianizing it as “Antonio Pietro”. In any case, the text in question that he wrote is called Diarium Romanum, and it recounts, first-hand, events in Rome from 19 October 1404 to 25 September 141
I cant read this book...

http://books.google.es/books?id=1HEtAQA ... CD8Q6AEwBA

But, in this article:

http://centri.univr.it/rm/biblioteca/SC ... -Muzio.pdf

find this pasage in the note foot, page 8:

43 Vale la pena di riportare il bel passo cronistico del Diarium Romanum di Antonio di Pietro da cui è tratta
la memoria:«Die Mercurii 17. [1412] dicti mensis Augusti, fuit depictus de mandato Domini nostri Papae per
omnes Pontes et Portas Urbis suspensus per pedem dextrum super furcam tamquam proditor Sanctae Matris
Ecclesiae Sforza, et in manu dextera tenebat unam zappam, et in manu sinistra tenebat unam scriptam sic
dicendo: Io son Sforza Villano della Cotognola, Traditore, Che dodeci tradimenti ho fatti alla Chiesa contro lo
mio onore; Promissioni, Capitoli, Patti hajo rotti»; Diarium Romanum ab anno MCCCCIV. usque ad
MCCCCXVII. auctore Antonio Petri, in Rerum Italicarum Scriptores, XXIV, Mediolani 1738, a cura di L.A.
Muratori, coll. 1031-1032; Il Diario Romano di Antonio di Pietro dello Schiavo, a cura di F. Isoldi, ibidem,
24, parte 5, Bologna 1922, p. 75. Anche BALESTRACCI, p. 44.
Thanks Marcos, you found it. Creighton's version made it sound like it happened shortly after May 19, but it actually took until August until Baldassare Cossa (John XXIII) did it.

"Wednesday 17 [1412] of the same month, August, there was depicted by command of our Lord the Pope on all the Bridges and Gates of the City, suspended by the right foot on a gallows as being a traitor to Holy Mother Church, Sforza; in his right hand he was holding a hoe, and in the left hand he was holding a writing saying,..." etc.

I'm surprised to find "hajo" as well, which means Ady's transcription was more accurate (so, who was her source?).

I really appreciate this, thanks.

Ross
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