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Local antiquities, local identitiesArt, literature and antiquarianism in Europe, c. 1400–1700$
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Kathleen Christian and Bianca de Divitiis

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781526117045

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9781526117045.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM MANCHESTER SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.manchester.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Manchester University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

The Gaulish past of Milan and the French invasion of Italy1

The Gaulish past of Milan and the French invasion of Italy1

(p.102) 5 The Gaulish past of Milan and the French invasion of Italy1
Local antiquities, local identities

Oren Margolis

Manchester University Press

The foundation myths of late medieval cities and states were never simply about origins: they were above all about destiny. In the fifteenth century, the combination of humanist methods and models, newly available source materials, and changing domestic and international political circumstances provided the impetus for the continued development of these myths as well as the creation of new ones. Yet even in Italy, not all eyes looked to Rome. The Carolingian foundation myth of Florence, in which Charlemagne’s supposed rebuilding of the city was used to explain the pro-French orientation of the commune and its Guelph elite, is perhaps the most well-known of these myths, but also an example of an Italian city defining itself in relation to a foreign power. This essay focuses on another element of Quattrocento myth-making culture: the treatment of northern Italy’s Gaulish past in the writings of some of the region’s humanists (e.g. (Antonio Cornazzano and Alberto Cattaneo), and the role of these writings in Franco-Milanese relations before and during the outbreak of the Italian Wars and the French domination of Milan.

Keywords:   Renaissance France, Renaissance Historiography, Renaissance Milan, Antonio Cornazzano, Alberto Cattaneo, Renaissance foundation myths, Local Historiography in Renaissance Italy, Cisalpine Gaul

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